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Why Are Women Given Anti-Depressants to Relieve PMS?

June 8, 2011 - SAN FRANCISCO, CA

Nearly 10 years ago, the FDA approved the anti-depressant prescription drug Zoloft for the treatment of premenstrual syndrome (PMS) and one expert believes that's 10 years too long, especially when natural alternatives have been proven to reduce PMS symptoms without drugs.

Instead of pharmaceuticals, Michael Mooney, Director of Research and Education at natural health company SuperNutrition Life Extension Research (, cited six natural nutrients that have been shown to relieve PMS:

  • Vitamin B6 (pyridoxine) - According to a study of 630 women published in the "British Journal of Clinical Practice," 100 mg to 150 mg of supplemental vitamin B6 reduced PMS in about 66 percent of the women, while 160 mg to 200 mg of vitamin B6 reduced PMS in about 79 percent of the women.

  • Vitamin D - "The Archives of Internal Medicine" published a study in 2005 which concluded that women with a higher median Vitamin D intake of 706 IU per day had significantly less (or no) PMS than subjects who got a median of the least amount of vitamin D, 112 IU per day.

  • Chaste tree berry (Vitex) - This extract has been shown to reduce PMS, based on a randomized placebo-controlled 3-month study of premenstrual syndrome in 170 women (average age 36) which was published in the "British Medical Journal."

  • Calcium carbonate - "The Journal of General Internal Medicine" published the results of a randomized placebo-controlled study of 78 women showed a 58 percent better reduction in PMS with 1,000 mg of calcium carbonate than with placebo during the luteal and menstrual phases of the reproductive cycle.

  • Magnesium - Two double-blind, placebo-controlled studies published in the "Journal of Women's Health" showed that magnesium at 360 mg per day reduced headaches and pain, and at 200 mg reduced weight gain, fluid retention, swelling of extremities, breast tenderness and abdominal bloating.

  • Vitamin E - "The Journal of Reproductive Medicine" published a randomized, placebo-controlled study confirmed a previous study that showed all major categories of PMS symptoms are improved with a daily supplementation of 400 IU of vitamin E." In all 15 categories of symptoms, vitamin E supplemented women reported 27-42 percent reduction in severity.

About Michael Mooney

Michael Mooney is the Director of Research and Education for SuperNutrition Life Extension Research.

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Ginny Grimsley


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