Stress tends to be one of the most common reasons for delayed or missed periods. And today’s world is filled with stress, from the constant ping from our devices to the rushing from one task to another that defines our modern way of living.
Too much stress impacts our hormonal health, and our time of the month is directly correlated to the balance of our hormonal health. Cortisol, the body’s main stress hormone, is secreted whenever we feel stressed. Too much cortisol in the body results in a suppression of reproductive hormones, which can result in the body not ovulating, not menstruating, or simply being subject to a more abnormal ovulation or menstruation schedule.
That’s where natural methods of balancing stress, like meditation, can come in handy.
Meditation lowers cortisol levels in the body.
Mindfulness meditation—which is just a fancy way of saying taking 20 minutes to focus on your breathing—is a great way to regulate stress. Researchers have found that mindfulness meditation actually lowers cortisol levels in the blood, lowering stress and physical side effects of too much stress in the body.
By reducing cortisol levels and decreasing the body’s stress response, meditation is a natural and holistic way to begin to rebalance and regulate your menstrual cycle without the addition of pharmaceutical drugs or more aggressive methods of hormone therapy.
Meditation helps develop our ability to listen to the body.
Often times an imbalance in our cycles is the result of years or months of not listening to what our body is trying to tell us. In today’s world of hopping from one thing to the next, it is easy to ignore the signals from our body.
Meditation provides us the space to listen to our bodies by simply sitting still and watching our breath. Practicing a simple 20 minute body scan meditation can help cultivate this relationship with the body, while also decreasing levels of biological stress in the body.
Meditation can ease symptoms of PMS.
The week before our periods it is natural to feel more stressed, anxious, and emotional. Meditation is a natural way to help curb these overactive emotions. It is also normal to feel more depressed this week, and regular meditation is scientifically proven to help decrease symptoms and instances of depression.
So the next time you are feeling the pre-period blues take a few moments to slow down, sit with your breath, and destress.
Meditation improves your relationship with yourself.
Let’s be honest—most of the time we are our own worst critic. Over time, we judge ourselves and can be much harder on ourselves than we would ever be with a friend or loved one.
Meditation can actually improve the relationship we have with ourselves. Numerous reports cite an increase in self-esteem, self-compassion, and overall quality of well being from daily meditation practice.
By improving the relationship with oneself, stress levels naturally decrease as we become more comfortable and self-assured in our own skin. And when we stress less, our bodies can feel at ease, and our cycle begins to balance too.
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