Ever wonder why you want to eat all the junk food in the entire world the week before your period? Or why you feel like you are the coolest person ever a week after your period? Well I have. Here is a guide to see how your cycle is affecting your hormones which can affect every aspect of your life. I found it incredibly interesting, I hope you do too!
*This is based off of a 28 day cycle, however, healthy cycles range from 21-40 days
Week One (days 1-7)
This is the week of your period where you experience bleeding (which typically lasts 4-8 days), cramps, and other symptoms of your period. Your estrogen levels are at an all-time low on day one of this cycle which can cause moodiness, depression, and increased hunger. You likely aren’t feeling as social or active during this time due to your low energy levels.
On the bright side, after day one your estrogen levels begin to climb, likely causing your energy to increase and your mood to improve. Your appetite should also lessen as the week goes on. Don't be concerned if you still feel moody during the rest of this week. Although estrogen levels are rising, they are still relatively low.
Week Two (days 8-14)
These are the days leading up to ovulation (day 12-14, also the time you are most likely to get pregnant if you have sex on this day). This week is the prime of your month (for most people). Your estrogen and testosterone continue to climb until they peak at the end of this week causing you to feel energetic and more eager for new experiences. You feel social and overall more confident. In fact, you actually are more attractive during this week as the high levels in estrogen shift your features (ever so slightly) to make you more symmetrical. You’re also typically less hungry and more likely to eat healthy foods during this time.
The combination of testosterone and estrogen spike also increase your libido (sex drive) to an all time high, so you might be a little more horny than usual. The testosterone also has you feeling more competitive and up for a challenge, especially during the end of this week.
Unfortunately, the heightened senses during this week can also cause an increase in anxiety for some people.
Week Three (days 15-21)
This week has two parts to it. For the first part of the week, you will experience a drop in estrogen levels. This can result in a slight down slope in your mood. However, during the second half of the week they rise back up and level out which also levels out your mood.
Progesterone levels rise throughout this week in order to help the egg your body thinks it might have released. This results in some fatigue and can also cause you to crave some of your favorite comfort foods or an increase in appetite, in case you’re eating for two now. It can also make you more prone to the hangries (anger because of hunger) so make sure you eat on time!
Week Four (days 22-28)
This is the week right before your period, PMS week! If you aren’t pregnant, your estrogen, testosterone and progesterone levels drop leading to moodiness and sometimes anxiety and depression.
This week you are also hungry and likely to crave carbohydrate rich foods due to the decreased levels of serotonin as well as foods high in calories and fat because of the still relatively high levels of progesterone.
People that experience chronic health issues sometimes see them worsen during this week because of the low levels of estrogen.
Every person is unique and feels the effects of their hormones differently. Just because these are the symptoms that usually happen, it could be totally different for you! What’s important is to be aware of your body and the effects that the changing levels of hormones can have on you.