All about your period (and reasons to appreciate it!)

There is so much to know periods (besides the fact that they are visitors every month or so). The truth is that your period is an excellent indicator of your health status, giving us good reason to appreciate this monthly visitor. All of this information can tell you some things about your body and how it’s doing.

For example, did you know,

• A regular period is a sign of low to normal stress levels and other indicators of good health

• The level of pain you experience during your cycle could indicate something more serious than just usual cramping

• The color of your period and how light or heavy your flow is can also be indicators of healthy hormonal levels

Let’s talk about why your period might come to a halt. While getting pregnant and having your period disappear may be exciting news for you, if you are not pregnant, having your period stop or become irregular could indicate excessive stress. If your body is going through waves of too much stress, then this affects the hormone production in your hypothalamus. In turn, this may lead to a change in your menstrual cycle. Another not-so-good reason is low body weight, which may go hand-in-hand with eating disorders such as anorexia or bulimia.

The color of your period can be useful information. For example, a deep red, even close to a dark purple color, indicates high levels of estrogen while a very light red may indicate too-low levels of estrogen. Those of us that see in between these colors can assume their levels of estrogen are normal. If you see any abnormal change in color, you should always consult your doctor.

Period pain and your flow are related, as having nearly debilitating cramping is often contingent upon having a heavy flow. Women who experience this may be more susceptible to getting anemia, a deficiency of red blood cells, or endometriosis, a condition in which the tissue normally lining the uterus grows outside the uterus, because of the regular excessive loss of blood.

Did you learn anything new about your period? All this information might make you appreciate Aunt Flo a little more. She’s pretty knowledgeable!

 

Resources:

http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/amenorrhea/basics/causes/con-20031561

http://www.womenshealthmag.com/health/period-health-clues

http://www.medicaldaily.com/your-menstrual-cycle-exposed-6-things-your-period-can-tell-you-about-your-health-278028

Photo Credit: Mario

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