Irregular periods are super common. I’ve dealt with it, you’re probably dealing with it or someone you know is. Irregular periods are normally caused by:
Puberty - it takes 6 months to two years to have regular periods at the very beginning
Menopause - occurs when a woman hasn’t menstruated in 12 consecutive months, before this they will begin to be irregular periods before they stop completely.
Breastfeeding - While some women don’t get periods at all during the months they nurse, some get irregular periods. This is because of prolactinis which is the primary hormone responsible for breast milk production, prolactin also prevents menstruation.
PCOS (Polycystic Ovary Syndrome) - We talk about PCOS a lot at The S’moo Co but a short answer for why PCOS is causing irregular periods is because of high levels of androgens (male hormones) and too much insulin which can disrupt the monthly cycle of ovulation and menstruation causing irregular periods or for them to stop all together.
Thyroid issues - Too much or too little thyroid hormone can make your periods irregular. There is also a condition called amenorrhea which is a thyroid disease that can cause your periods to stop for several months or longer.
Eating disorders - There is a strong connection between various eating disorders and reproductive health. Food in general can make a large difference on your periods and often cause irregular periods. About half of women who are going through an eating disorder have irregular periods.
Stress - we’ve talked about the impacts of stress and how they can change your body. They can cause irregular periods and much more!
What is a regular menstrual cycle?
A menstrual cycle is an average of 28 days but it varies from woman to woman and it should come every 24-38 days.
What is an irregular period?
Your period is considered irregular if the time between periods keeps changing and your periods come earlier or later… sometimes you might even skip one all together. Periods that occur less than 21 days or more than 35 days apart, missing three or more periods in row, and menstrual flow that is much heavier or lighter than usual are all considered an irregular menstrual cycle.
Treatment really depends on what is causing your irregular periods. It’s great to get as much information as you can so you can try remedies or go to a doctor with a little more information. I always think it’s a good idea to understand the possibilities and possible solutions.
Exercise: It can be yoga, dancing, going to the gym. Yoga has been around for 5,000 years and its been found to be an effective treatment for your menstrual issues. A study was done on women to see if yoga could help regulate their menstruation. It found that 35-40 minutes of yoga, 5 days a week for 6 months lowered hormone levels related to irregular cycles.
Weight loss can often help with PCOS symptoms. Exercise in general can help you maintain a healthy weight which is helpful for women with PCOS (polycystic ovary syndrome) and also help with menstrual pain for women experiencing dysmenorrhea.
It’s also been known to help with depression and anxiety which can reduce stress that comes with life and also that comes from your menstrual cycle symptoms.
There are some foods that women have been using to treat irregular periods though they aren’t scientifically based. Things like ginger, pineapple and cinnamon have all be used through history.
Ginger has been studied but not enough to say it’s proven to work. Still small studies have shown that it can reduce period pain and taken seven days before your period can help relieve moodiness, and some physical period symptoms.
Cinnamon, is also not scientifically proven but shown through time and small studies to reduce menstrual bleeding, help with menstrual pain from cramps and with PCOS.
Apple cider vinegar… yum 🤢. I remember trying this when I was younger, before I had S’moo to take instead. It was in a southern remedies book and it actually worked well for me but I couldn’t handle the taste. Drinking 1/8 cup (15ml) a day can help restore ovulatory menstruation in women with PCOS. It can also help your body with insulin levels, lowering blood sugar and help you lose weight.
Pineapples have so much history. When we went to New Orleans we found out that back in the day, southern hosts would leave a pineapple at the foot of their guests’ bed as a sign they had overstayed their welcome. Besides a bunch of strange historical meanings behind pineapples, when it comes to home remedies they have been used as an anti-inflammatory, and pain-reliever. It contains bromelian (an enzyme) that softens the lining of the uterus and regulates periods, though this isn’t proven scientifically.
It’s important to take the vitamins and minerals you need to help regulate your body this can be in supplement form or you can find a lot of them in some foods though it can be difficult to get enough of it in foods sometimes.
Vitamin D - A study done in 2015 linked low levels of vitamin D and irregular periods. Vitamin D can reduce depression symptoms, help with weight loss and lower the risk of certain diseases.
Omega-3 - If your body is NOT getting enough fatty acids, your cycle can be affected. Omega-3 supplementation could reduce levels of testosterone and regulate menstrual cycles based on a recent study on women with PCOS.
Inositol - also found in S’moo, is important for ovary function and helps with irregular periods.
Magnesium - Can help with menstrual cramps but can also reduce stress. Stress is a common reason for period irregularity, and this mineral will help to balance you.
S'moo - This is a supplements that was designed to help women with PCOS regulate their hormones but since it was released it has been helping even more women with irregular periods and PMS symptoms.
Irregular periods sometimes seem to rule our lives and it can be difficult to get our menstrual cycle regulated when so many outside factors can come into play like stress. Please seek medical advice if your irregular periods continue. Join groups and ask questions, try different vitamins, exercises to find the right balance for you.
Lifestyle changes and home remedies will work for some people to regulate their periods but everyone is different. Don't give up, try different things. You will find a way to get your menstrual cycle back on track and your periods regulated.