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    feeling fat!
    An_241258 posted:
    I am wondering if its normal to have the 'fat' feeling, even when it isnt PMS?
    I started taking vitex chaste-berry about 2 yrs back (for irregular periods) and while my periods didnt really become regular, i noticed the acne as well as the fat feeling went.

    Since stopping the vitex (about 8 weeks back), i got a period and beforehand suffered really sore breasts, huge distended stomach. I thought the fat feeling would go away, but now i just feel 'fat' constantly.

    ive read that you shouldnt take vitex for long, even though i was on it for 2 yrs, with only a couple month breaks in there.

    Ive weighed myself and it fluctuates between 127 and 130 pounds (1 kg), i'm quite slim for my height and thats been my weight for a long time. I'm 28 and Im tired of feeling 'fat'! Any ideas?
    Jane Harrison Hohner, RN, RNP responded:
    Dear An: Usually the "feeling fat" symptom right before menstruation has been attributed to either mild fluid retention and/or slowed gut motility (due to luteal phase progesterone). As far as I am aware chasteberry/Vitex does not work as a diuretic/water pill nor does it increase gut activity.

    Alas, I have not bee able to find studies which might give you a more "for sure" answer. Here is description of the most often cited side effects:

    annony01 replied to Jane Harrison Hohner, RN, RNP's response:
    Thanks for your answer Jane, maybe it is just coincidence and nothing to do with the vitex.
    Could warmer weather contribute to some fluid retention? I just feel constantly full, and clothes are too snug, even though they fit the same as they usually do. It's uncomfortable!
    Jane Harrison Hohner, RN, RNP replied to annony01's response:
    Dear annony: With warmer weather, blood vessels can dilate to help release excess body heat. This, plus standing can increase swelling, especially to the lower limbs. Increased salt intake can prompt overall fluid retention. Increased activity can "get blood moving" which can decrease edema.

    As you can note, most of this refers to extremities not abdominal bloating. In my clinical experience, abdominal bloating is more often caused by fluid shifts in the gut and slowed gut motility/constipation. If your symptoms persist you may want to have an abdominal exam from your GYN or clinic.


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