There’s a new buzzword going around regarding women’s health: the infradian rhythm. Each woman has one. It refers to the internal clock of your menstrual cycle. Some women experience a 28-day cycle, while others are longer or shorter. Infradian rhythms are any natural rhythm that lasts more than one day. Your menstrual cycle is one example.
What is the Infradian Rhythm?
The infradian rhythm shows how your body changes throughout your menstrual cycle, which lasts for the entire month. Women’s bodies go through changes as hormone levels fluctuate. Your metabolism changes, as do cortisol levels, which affect feelings of stress. You require a different amount of sleep, may feel more tired throughout the day, and battle PMS symptoms that can bring you down.
Each of these things is due to your unique infradian rhythm, or your internal menstrual clock. Your infradian rhythm is broken down week by week of your menstrual cycle. According to Alisa Vitti, women’s hormone expert and founder of Flo Living, each week, your body’s physical needs change. Learning to monitor your infradian rhythm can help you determine the best eating and exercise routines throughout the month.
How to Get in Touch with Your Infradian Rhythm
To get in touch with infradian rhythm, and start balancing your mind and body, it’s essential to track your menstrual cycle. From the day you first get your period, to your time of ovulation, to the next day of menstruation.
Some women know where they are in their cycle based on changes in mood or the physical changes their bodies go through. One of the best ways to monitor your infradian rhythm is by monitoring your basal body temperature. But there are more cues to look out for.
Measure Your Basal Body Temperature
Your basal body temperature can tell you when you’re most likely ovulating. A woman’s temperature rises approximately halfway through her menstrual cycle, right after ovulation. This signals that it’s a good time to try to conceive, or a good time to avoid sex if you aren’t.
Other Changes to Note
Throughout your infradian rhythm, other changes will occur in your body. Vitti recommends that you take notes throughout the month and stick to it for a few months so that you can decipher patterns.
Do certain foods make you sick on certain days? Write it down. Do you have cramps out of seemingly nowhere? Make a note of it. Do you hit a three-day slump where you feel drained no matter how much sleep you get? That’s right, chart it.
What to Do with the Information
Women don’t always associate changes like varying energy level with their menstrual cycle. But when you start to take notes and compare them over months, you’ll likely see a pattern.
Vitti suggests that this is the key to making the most of your health. Once you identify the patterns, you’ll know what foods to avoid, be able to plan exercise routines you can stick to when cramps are expected, take steps to improve your mental health when you’re likely to experience a decrease in mood, and more.
Additionally, any bothersome symptoms that you didn’t formerly associate with your menstrual cycle can come to light. You can add them to the list of questions you should ask your gynecologist to gain better insight into your reproductive health.