Pre-menstrual syndrome describes the occurrence of a cluster of symptoms including bloating, tiredness, irritability, depression, breast tenderness and headaches, occurring most commonly in the week leading up to menstruation. There are three main causes: oestrogen dominance and relative progesterone deficiency – corrected by natural progesterone and avoiding sources of oestrogen; glucose intolerance, marked by a craving for sweet foods and stimulants; and deficiency in essential fatty acids and vitamin B6, zinc and magnesium, which together create prostaglandins, which help to balance hormone levels. While the need for these is greatest just before a period is due, it is wise to take the supplements throughout the month. If dietary and supplementary intervention do not result in significant improvement, consider seeing a nutrition consultant and having your hormone balance checked.
The most common prostate problem is prostatitis or benign prostatic hyperplasia, in which the prostate gland enlarges, interfering with the flow of urine. This is thought to be due to hormonal imbalances, possibly testosterone deficiency and oestrogen dominance, affecting prostaglandins, which have an anti-inflammatory effect. Reversal can be achieved through supplementing essential fatty acids and testosterone. Also important is zinc and a herb called saw palmetto. The prostate gland is also a common site of cancer, most likely triggered by hormonal imbalances with risk factor similarities to breast cancer.
This is a completely different kind of skin condition from eczema or dermatitis and does not generally respond as well to nutritional intervention. It can occur when the body is ‘toxic’, perhaps due to an overgrowth of the organism Candida albicans, digestive problems leading to intoxication, or to poor liver detoxification. Otherwise consider the factors discussed for eczema and dermatitis (see pages 000 and 000).