Do Men suffer from 'PMS syndrome'? Yes hormonal changes do happen in men.
A quarter of men believe they have monthly “man periods,” with PMS-like symptoms, including stomach cramps, mood swings, and hot flashes.
Stomach cramps, mood swings, and hot flashes are all tell-tale signs it’s that time of the month for women — and men. A new survey conducted by VoucherCloud (Think UK version of Groupon) found a quarter of men believe they experience monthly “man periods,” suffering premenstrual (PMS) symptoms from cramps to food cravings.
Jed Diamond, therapist and author of The Irritable Male Syndrome, has done some exploring on the existence of the man period in the past and believes “men have hormonal cycles just as women do.” Contrary to popular belief, men become violent when their testosterone levels go down, where irritability, depression, and withdrawal come with a deficiency of the hormone. Testosterone levels in young men can fluctuate as much as four times daily. However, what is less clear is how these levels vary day by day and week by week.
To explore this man period phenomenon, VoucherCloud asked the male survey respondents of over 2,400 (50 percent men and 50 percent women) if they frequently suffered the same common side effects of PMS that women experience during their menstrual cycle, including tiredness, cramps, and increased sensitivity. The results revealed 26 percent of men experience these feelings on a regular basis, while more shockingly, 58 percent of their female partners believed them. Men identified several PMS-related symptoms as signs of their "man periods," such as constant hunger to general irritability. Males (12 percent) confessed they were "more sensitive about personal weight," while some (5 percent) suffered from "menstrual cramps."
Furthermore, 43 percent of female respondents claimed they offered special support to their partners during this time of the month. When asked how they had done so, some ways included "try and cheer him up" (44 percent) and "walk around on egg shells" (39 percent). Out of those who didn’t believe their partners had man periods, 33 percent told their partner to "man up."
When it comes to spending during man periods, the average male spent an additional $124.62 on food and snacks per month, including takeout, compared to those who didn’t believe in the phenomenon. Men who believed they suffered from menstrual symptoms reportedly spent an extra $97.35 per month to combat their increased food cravings.
A similar 2009 study found a woman’s menstrual cycle does influence her spending habits. In the 10 days before a woman's period begins, she's more likely to go on a shopping spree and overspend about $27. The researchers suggest these women were shopping excessively as a way to deal with negative emotions they experience during their cycle. For example, stress and depression moved some women to shop to cheer themselves up and regulate their emotions.
So, perhaps there is some scientific validity to man periods. A 2004 study suggested men suffer from PMS symptoms as badly as women. The men scored higher than women in depression; lack of arousal; hot flashes and pain, including stomach cramps, back pain, and headaches. The researchers suspected the reason these men complained more than women is because of their difference in pain thresholds. Women could experience more pain, but don’t give it as much attention.
However, ladies should not fear having synchronized periods with men they’re in a relationship with. “In our research only women’s cycles synch with each other, men’s don’t synch with other men’s or women’s — so women in a relationship with each other can often experience that,” Diamond told The Daily Beast.
If you see a man cranky and incredibly hungry, offer him some greasy food and a beer, he may be on his man period.