Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Understanding Your Cycle ~ Part 1

Have a Happy Period! What?! A Happy Period…? I saw a TV commercial advertising a feminine product and it uses that very line. I tell you…I just wanted to throw the TV out the window…a happy periodright. Who has a Happy period?!

Women have been getting a bad rap for a long long time due to our hormones causing crankiness, the feeling of sadness and other hormonal side effects. Whether we are in our prime or entering menopause, if we ‘tune’ in to our body and how it responds, we can enhance our health and happiness no matter what time of the month it is or what stage we are in our life.

Days 1 – 7

During this week, the three major reproductive hormones (estrogen, progesterone, testosterone) hit their low and this is when you would get your period. This slump in hormones reduces your brain’s output of neuropeptides (such as serotonin), which causes blue moods. Give yourself a pick me up. Pamper yourself. Give yourself a facial, a massage or enjoy a funny movie. You can perk up your neuropeptide output by giving yourself alittle TLC

Days 8-14

Our estrogen and testosterone production peaks during these days, but progesterone stays low. This phase encourages the maturation of eggs and our brain goes into high gear. This is a great week for brainstorming, keeping up energy and confidence. This is also a good time for romance.

If you are in your 20’s – 30’s, eat nutrient rich whole grains, such as pastas, breads and cereals. These foods will help fuel the emotional highs of this week. Grains prevent the overproduction of insulin, a hormone that can destabilize ovarian function and throw off hormone levels.

If you are in your 40’s, Take an Omega 3. Women who are going into their perimenopausal years have erratic dopamine and norepinephrine hormone levels.

Taking an Omega 3 can increase your physical and mental energy levels and boost your mood. Fish omega3 oils can increase production of antidepressant brain chemicals.

If in your 50’s, practice deep breathing. Even when menstruation ceases, the brain continues to increase production of dopamine and norepinephrine during this week.. Even though estrogen production is reduced after menopause, you can preserve the estrogen your ovaries can produce to maximize their well being.

By practicing deep breathing, you can reduce production of cortisol, a hormone that disrupts menopausal ovarian function. Take 6 to 8 calm breaths per minute for 15 minutes each day. This can boost alertness, productivity and happiness.

Coming Next: Part 2 ~ Days 15-26 Days 27-28


Carol King said...

Very interesting, thanks for sharing this information

suZen said...

I think the only "happy period" is NO period! This is the number one advantage to aging - perhaps besides the accumulated wisdom, its the ONLY advantage! Glad I'm done with it.