Do you ever feel like you have your life together and that you’re bringing your best self to everything you do? And then, three weeks later, you’re ready to give up, move across the country and just reinvent yourself (name and all)? You’re not alone. To be honest, our periods affect everything we do—our metabolism, appetite, sleep quality, and even our mental health.
Even though there is a lot we don’t know about menstruation, experts around the world are trying to work with what we do know to help us up our overall productivity and health. Alisa Vitti, a menstrual health expert, integrative nutritionist, and the founder of modern hormone health care company FLO Living, developed a method she coined ‘cycle syncing.’
What is cycle syncing?
Vitti’s method basically breaks down an average 28 day period cycle into four parts– menstruation (phase one), follicular phase (phase two), ovulation (phase three), and the luteal phase (phase four). This method aims to help you figure out when and how to eat, exercise, socialise, take up new projects, and just figure out how the different hormones can help you amp up your health.
How can I do this?
Menstruation phase: This is when your uterine lining is being shed and you’re bleeding. During this time, it is best to rest and give your body time to recover as your hormone levels are low. This is the best time to carve out time for some self-care. If you do tend to exercise, opt for low intensity training like yoga or pilates. Remember to be gentle with yourself and don’t commit to newer projects and ideas. Instead, take stock of how far you’ve come.
Follicular phase: This is the stage when you have stopped bleeding and your ovaries start producing immature eggs. Your energy and oestrogen will be soaring during this period, so it is the best time to start new projects and dream big. Map out your goals, schedule meetings, and unleash your creativity.
Ovulation phase: This is when your oestrogen and testosterone levels have spiked and your energy levels may be at an all-time high. This is the time to march ahead, finish up any pending work, give that speech, and smash those pitches. Any chores that feel like a drag–including cleaning and organising–will be easier to accomplish.
Luteal phase: This is when your oestrogen drops and progesterone increases. This may cause you to feel moodier as progesterone causes your body to produce cortisol (stress hormone). If you are already worked up and stressed, the additional cortisol can make you feel burnt out. As a result, you may feel the urge to rest and relax. Now is when you should wind down, take stock of everything you need to do that week, and plan out things.