The Connection Between Hormones and Menstruation
Have you ever wondered why you feel extra frustrated or antsy the week before your period? Or why randomly you’ll feel a burst of energy in the middle of your cycle? It’s because of hormones! If you brush off, ehh, hormones don’t impact much; you might want to think twice. Hormones and menstruation are intrinsically intertwined and are how your body knows what to do next. If your hormones are off, you’ll feel off.
What are hormones anyways?
Chapel Hill Gynecology puts it this way, “Hormones are integral in so many of your body systems and they regulate a lot of what your body does. Hormones regulate growth, sex drive, sexual development, reproduction, sexual function, metabolism, and thirst among other things. Simply, they let the body know what to do so it will run smoothly. They are integral to our digestive, immune, urinary, reproductive, nervous, cardiovascular, respiratory and skeletal systems.”
During your cycle, which technically starts on day one of your period, your Progesterone is high, and your Estrogen is low. So you may feel tired, a bit slower, and more sensitive. After your period ends, you’ll start the follicular phase, which is easy to think of as Springtime for your body. Your Estrogen is rising, energy is picking up, and there is hope for all your activities and getting things done. During Ovulation, your Estrogen will be at its peak, which signals to your body that it’s baby-making time and releases an egg to be fertilized. When the egg is not fertilized, the Progesterone starts rising again, which can cause a roller coaster of emotions as they trade places as Estrogen fades into the background.
When you don’t know this is how your body works, it can take you by surprise each month and cause you to over, or under-react in different situations.
There’s no need to shame yourself for needing a night to yourself if you know you are about to get your period and just need to breathe and rest. Whereas if you think you should feel top-of-the-morning -Estrogen-At-Its-Peak all month long, you’ll be disappointed in yourself. The world gives us enough baggage to work through, and you don’t need to add to it with self-shaming.
Tracking your menstrual cycle will also help you understand what your hormones are doing. When you observe your symptoms, don’t just write when you bleed. Write how you feel. What are your energy levels like? Do you have any bloating or cramps? Are your emotions steady, or are you feeling out of control? How is your mental capacity? (Let’s be honest. The high progesterone brain fog is so real). To track your menstrual cycle you can grab the App on Google Play here, or on the Apple Store here! Want another way to track and plan? Download our pdf planner of The Agenda. here!
Hormones can become imbalanced, and it’s worth talking to a doctor to see your next steps. Seed cycling can help some, and moving your body, eating nourishing food, and getting good sleep can all make an impact. Hormones and menstruation play a vital role in your health, start tracking and go with the flow rather than being taken for a ride.