How Does the Moon’s Cycle Affect Your Period?
Sometimes the phrase “menstrual cycle” can be confused with the three to seven days for which women are menstruating. Our period is just a small part of the entire menstrual cycle. So when women say they’re on their “cycle” when referring to their period it’s actually a misnomer because, technically, we’re always on our cycle. The average woman’s cycle is about 28 days long from start to finish.
The Phases of the Menstrual Cycle
During our cycle we experience different phases as an egg matures and travels up the fallopian tube to await fertilization and then is passed through the vagina if it’s not fertilized. According to a recent video released by Glamour magazine, day 1-2 of your cycle coincide with the first days of your period. Your estrogen is low and as a result you experience fatigue. By days 3 – 7 your period finally ends and your estrogen begins to rise giving you a boost of energy as well. Through days 8-13 your estrogen spikes and you’re at your peak. This is when your body prepares for ovulation. Days 14- 18 are after you have ovulated and your hormones are fluctuating which can cause mood swings. Days 19-22 your estrogen level begins to drop. Around days 23-25 when your progesterone levels are high your libido also drops. Days 26-28 are when your body prepares to shed the lining of the uterus and you may notice your breasts enlarge and become sore. Then your cycle begins again, as does your period.
The Similarity between the Lunar Cycle & the Menstrual Cycle
Would you be surprised to hear that our menstrual cycle is very similar to another cycle in nature as well? The cycle of the moon is about 29.5 days and it also goes through a waxing and waning. The period itself can be likened to the phase of the waxing new moon. This is a period of renewal. The phase where we peak and estrogen is at its highest can be likened to the full moon. This is the time when we and the moon are blossoming. Around the days when your estrogen levels drop, this can be compared to the dark waning moon. Think of this period as the time for harvest and degeneration. And then finally the lunar cycle returns back to the waxing new moon or our periods.
Every woman menstruates at different times of the lunar cycle. Some women menstruate during a crescent moon, some during a full moon, some on a waning moon and still others on the new moon. It is said that women who live closer to nature have cycles that completely mimic that of the moon. (They tend to ovulate on the full moon and menstruate on the new moon.) However, because many modern women live in cities and are exposed to artificial light rather than moon light our cycles tend to be all over the place. Even so, in one study of a thousand women who had irregular periods, just sleeping with a light on during the ovulation phase (in an attempt to mimic the moon) actually made more than half the participants have a regular menstrual cycle. So maybe the “Man in the moon” is a misnomer, too. They should call it the “Woman in the moon.”