You period is a sign of your overall health.
Do you wish you had a monthly report card that could tell you what you need to know about your body? You have it already, and it’s your period! In fact, within the Chinese Medical school of thought (TCM) there exists the notion of the perfect period.
You can read this blog post to learn more about what a normal menstrual cycle looks like.
The Traditional Chinese Medicine Approach
First of all, I want to thank Dr Tanya from Urban Roots Wellness Centre for teaching me this valuable information. If you live in Calgary and need support to balance your period, I highly recommend Dr Tanya or Dr Erin Tremblay for acupuncture.
In Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), the uterus is nourished by all vital essences (blood, Qi, Yin and Yang). All organ groups and meridians interact with the uterus. If there is an imbalance with one of these groups or essences it will show up in the menstrual cycle. Therefore, analysis of period symptoms is the perfect window into women’s health.
As your menstrual phase approaches, your PMS and period symptoms will reflect which of your organ groups are out of balance.
Decode Your Period
Use these symptomology cues to tune in to where your body needs healing. You can use Eating For Your Cycle principles to gain a normal menstrual cycle, build or detox your hormones, and return to balance.
primary symptoms- clotting, dark brown blood, cramping, headaches, breast tenderness, mood swings, depression
secondary symptoms- wandering muscle pain, eye problems, a feeling of being bloated or swollen
related hormones- excess estrogen and thyroid
helpful foods- bitter greens (dandelion), lemon, avocado, schizandra berries, raspberry, turmeric, ginger and walnuts
primary symptoms- bloating, loose stools, diarrhea, craving sweets, pressure in lower abdomen, anxiety
secondary symptoms- tiredness, gaining weight, dull/yellow complexion, digestive disorders
related hormones- insulin and cortisol
helpful foods- warm/cooked foods, pepper, cardamom, cinnamon, ginger, coriander, root vegetables, and blood sugar balancing foods
primary symptoms- late or early period, flooding, excess vaginal discharge
secondary symptoms- hot or cold feet, diarrhea during your period, back pain, hot face, exhaustion, poor memory
related hormones- adrenal hormones and thyroid
helpful foods- black sesame seeds, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, black beans, blackberries, seaweeds
primary symptoms- insomnia, heart palpitations, anxiety, restlessness during PMS and period
secondary symptoms- feeling hot, tongue ulcers
related hormones- serotonin and thyroid
helpful foods- red foods (red beans, red fruits and vegetables), pear powder and reishi mushroom
Ultimately, when you pay attention to your body, especially your PMS and period symptoms, you will have an easy time bringing your hormones and menstrual cycle back into balance.