Learn What a Healthy Period Looks Like
What a Healthy Period Really Looks Like
Welcome to BAZAAR.com's first ever Period Month, where for an entire four weeks we'll be publishing stories devoted to your period. Our aim is to delve into what really happens during a woman's cycle—and with the help of Flo Living founder Alisa Vitti, we'll teach you how you can harness your hormones as a path to success, power and global change.
If I could compare my period to something, it would be as dry the Sahara Desert.
I was 18 years old and in agony when my gynecologist handed me a packet of birth control pills to address my insane cramping, heavy bleeding and acne. “I have horrible cramps,” I told the nurse who chuckled and said, “Haven’t we all,” before handing me a packet of Advil. I was told too many times that cramping was a part of being a woman and to accept the painful side effects. So I was given synthetic hormones to mask the symptoms—rather than addressing the route of my hormonal problems—and after being on the pill for three years, I no longer get my period at all: something else I have been told by doctors is "normal."
"There is absolutely no reason you should suffer on your period."
What the doctor didn't tell me is that my unhealthy teenage diet could have actually been responsible for a lot of my symptoms.
Alisa Vitti, the founder of hormone center Flo Living, later explained to me that these insane cramps and nausea can be caused by a vasovagal, or stress, response provoked by prostaglandins—lipids that aid in recovery of tissue damage or infection. And if you are eating the wrong fats (like canola oil instead of olive oil), you might end up with too much prostaglandin, which can decrease relaxation while increasing cramps.
"There is absolutely no reason you should suffer on your period," says Vitti, explaining that my cramps, heavy bleeding and acne are actually curable symptoms.
Video: This is Your Period in 2 Minutes | Glamour
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