The topic of whether the moon affects menstrual cycles has been the subject of interest and speculation for along time. If the moon decided to stop spinning around the earth would we still have periods?
While some people say they have experienced changes in their menstrual cycle in relation to lunar phases, scientific evidence supporting a direct relationship is limited.
Menstruation, the shedding of the uterine lining, is controlled by a complex combination of hormones within the reproductive system. The menstrual cycle or period typically lasts around 28 days (although there are natural variations on this). On the other hand, the lunar cycle lasts approximately 29.5 days, with different phases such as the new moon, waxing crescent, full moon, and waning crescent.
Anecdotal accounts and folklore have often linked the menstrual cycle with the moon's phases, leading to the concept of the "lunar effect." Those who subscribe to this argue that because the moon influences tides and the human body is composed of a significant amount of water, the moon could also affect bodily processes, including menstruation.
However, studies examining the relationship between the moon and periods have not yielded much to back this up. Many even when using larger sample sizes and advanced statistical analyses.
One study published in the journal "Acta Obstetricia et Gynecologica Scandinavica" in 2006 analysed data from over 1.5 million menstrual cycles and found no association between lunar phases and the onset of menstruation. Another study published in the "American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology" in 2013 examined the menstrual cycles of 74 women and likewise found no significant relationship with lunar phases.
The human body's hormonal regulation is very complex and influenced by factors such as stress, diet, exercise, and overall health. These are far more likely to have an impact on menstrual cycles than lunar phases.
I would like to add that the lack of scientific evidence supporting the lunar effect on menstrual cycles does not invalidate personal experiences or beliefs. Menstruation is highly individual and very personal. You know your body best and you may feel a strong connection between your cycle and the moon,
In conclusion, the current scientific consensus suggests that the moon's phases do not have a direct and consistent influence on menstrual cycles. Menstruation is primarily regulated by internal hormonal mechanisms and external factors that are unrelated to lunar cycles. While personal experiences may vary, the available evidence does not support the notion that the moon significantly affects menstrual timing or symptoms.
Have a look at our other POP TALK blogs.
Together, we can work towards a more sustainable and eco-friendly future for all.