PMS 'a myth' says Professor

PREMENSTRUAL distress is largely a myth, and women who experience it usually have their blokes to blame. So says Jane Ussher, professor of women's health psychology at the University of Western Sydney, who says couples therapy is a potential treatment for severe cases of premenstrual moodiness. She says only a tiny minority of women - between 1.5 and 5 per cent - experience premenstrual mood changes, such as depression, anger or irritability, which can affect relationships.

According to Dr Ussher, the fact that premenstrual syndrome appears to be an exclusively Western ailment adds to the picture of it as a cultural construct because women studied in China, India and Hong Kong either don't report negative moods premenstrually or don't attribute them to PMS.

FIN Comment: Hmm. Dr Ussher appears to have overlooked an alternative explanation - that an exclusively Western ailment could be due to the Western diet, see reader report below.

If you suffer from food-induced PMS or know some one who does, please vote in the online poll on http://www.smh.com.au/lifestyle/life/mood-swings-on-pms-is-it-all-a-myth-20121221-2brjw.html#ixzz2FkNgDf5d  (closes Sunday evening 23/12/2012)

Thanks!

Sue Dengate

Food Intolerance Network Reader Report

"After my daughter was born, I took antidepressants for 12 months, then I spent 18 months weaning myself off them very slowly, because if I went any faster I had withdrawal symptoms. During this time I went on the elimination diet for myself. My PMS, other menstrual problems and depression all disappeared. Challenges showed that I am sensitive to nearly everything. If someone had told me when I first got postnatal depression that my problems were due to food intolerance, I would have gone on the diet straight away. I've been on this diet for months and now I can't really remember what it's like to be depressed." - from http://fedup.com.au/stories/2004/343-depression-female-hormones-and-depression-sept-2004