Years ago, a 19 year old woman and her family came to see me for “severe PMS”. I hear the word “severe” a lot, but none as profound as this one. This girl raged for 3 out of 4 weeks per month. Only the week after her cycle was she tolerable. For two weeks her rage isolated her from her friends and activities. But the week just before her cycle began was rage on steroids! She frequently ran screaming around her home, punching holes in walls, throwing and breaking things, pushing and battering her siblings and even her parents. As a result, her whole family (except for her) moved into a hotel the week before her cycle. They had tried everything from anti-depressants to birth control pills. Nothing worked. They came to me in desperation.
She did not want to be there. Her attitude was atrocious, but her mom and dad persisted. At one point her mother asked if her chocolate addiction could have anything to do with it. With that mere statement, she flew out of her chair and came within an inch of my face – we were basically nose to nose – as she vehemently spewed out the words “Don’t you TOUCH my chocolate!!!”. So we talked on, my trying to investigate deeper into the underlying cause of hormones so out of balance, her defending everything her parents said.
During the conversation it became quite evident that she had no intention of doing anything to help herself. She flat out said she would not do acupuncture, would not change her diet, would not take a single supplement pill or any other thing I recommended. So out of determination to help this girl whether she realized she needed the help or not, I finally said “Okay. I’ll make a deal with you. If you will do only one thing, I will not make you do acupuncture, change any other part of your diet, or take pills.” So she agreed, only if it was one thing. I emphasized that that one thing had to be of my choosing and she said she’d agree. So I told her she could have no chocolate in any form for 3 months. She flew out of her chair, losing her temper and stomping around. All in the room sat quietly and let her rage. Finally, she sat back down and agreed to it.
6 weeks later I got a call from her parents. They said she was a completely different girl. 80% of her rage was gone. All were happily stunned. Now she was reasonable enough to understand the impact just one thing as simple as chocolate had influenced her life and was ready for more treatment, and I am happy to say we got her hormones balanced.
There are many reasons for hormonal imbalance, but thankfully, some healthy choices to resolve it. If you are struggling with any pre-menstrual symptom – cramping, bloating, breast tenderness, sweet cravings, etc. come in and let us get to the cause of your hormonal imbalance so you can live life more happily during this time.
©2016 Holly A. Carling, O.M.D., L.Ac., Ph.D.