The Four phases of menstruation
By Francesca Canzano-Franklin
YIN PHASE (days 6-13): Yin phase. During this time, there are increased amounts of estrogen, causing the lining of the uterus to thicken and the follicles to develop. We encourage you to eat protein and mineral-rich foods (especially eggs and cooked leafy greens) to replenish blood and Yin.
Divine illustration by Rita Serrano
QI PHASE (days 22-28): Toward the end of this phase, levels of estrogen drop drastically. Serotonin levels drop with the estrogen, so there can be depressed mood and PMS symptoms. Feelings of frustration, easy tears, mood swings, as well as physical symptoms like breast tenderness and bloating are all symptoms of what TCM calls “Qi Stagnation.” Your body is ready to move all the blood it has gathered in the uterus and your hormones are about to shift drastically again as you head into the menstrual phase.
Our bodies are a part of nature. A woman’s menstrual cycle is a potent reminder of this fact; it has four seasons and moves with the moon. Just as we shift our behaviour, clothing, and foods from winter to summer, through being mindful of our own seasons we learn about our internal nature.
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