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What the Yuck: Can PMS change your boob size?
August 5th, 2011
04:08 PM ET

What the Yuck: Can PMS change your boob size?

Too embarrassed to ask your doctor about sex, body quirks, or the latest celeb health fad? In a regular feature and a new book, "What the Yuck?!," Health magazine medical editor Dr. Roshini Raj tackles your most personal and provocative questions. Send 'em to Dr. Raj at whattheyuck@health.com.

Q: Is it normal for my boobs to get a whole cup-size bigger during PMS? It's such a dramatic change that I need two different sets of bras!

Yep, breast inflation is completely normal. During the premenstrual phase, we have higher levels of the hormones progesterone and prolactin, both of which can cause breast tissue to swell and milk glands to increase in size.

Plus, our bodies retain water during that premenstrual period. The change in boob size varies from woman to woman and sometimes from month to month. Some women won't notice much difference in their ta-tas, while others get a monthly (temporary) boob job.

Though you can't stop this hormonal process, there are things you can do to make your PMS breast makeover less pronounced. To keep water retention in check, cut back on your salt intake. Keep an eye out for hidden sodium in soup, vegetable juice, and fast food. If that doesn't help, water pills can help with the water retention.

If the change is dramatic and it really stresses you out, talk to your doctor about going on oral contraceptives. By regulating the hormonal fluctuation, the Pill can help keep you in one cup-size all month long.

Follow @CNNHealth on Twitter

Copyright Health Magazine 2011


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Get a behind-the-scenes look at the latest stories from CNN Chief Medical Correspondent, Dr. Sanjay Gupta, Senior Medical Correspondent Elizabeth Cohen and the CNN Medical Unit producers. They'll share news and views on health and medical trends - info that will help you take better care of yourself and the people you love.