Is premenstrual syndrome (PMS) to blame for your bad mood? Not so fast, suggest researchers from the medical school at the University of Toronto. When it comes to moodiness, they claim PMS is too often the scapegoat for general stress or lack of support.
Dr. Sarah Romans and her team of researchers aren’t saying that PMS isn’t real, but “that those symptoms are culturally over-attributed to the menstrual cycle, to the detriment of the medical community and those (more…)
It was a perfect afternoon for a bike ride, breezy and springtime bright. My husband, Bill, and I unloaded our bikes and passed them to our children, who stood waiting by our side.
“I need a new seat,” I said nonchalantly, handing my bike to our daughter, 11. “This one really hurts my pubic bone.” Last season, we had switched the offending seat from Bill’s bike, because, well …
“… it made my penis numb,” Bill jumped in.
“Daaadd!” our son, 14, whisper-shouted.
“Yeah,” I said, seizing the teachable moment — casually, of course. “I remember you saying you felt uncomfortable having a numb penis.”
“Mommm!” Our kids scanned the busy parking lot for earwitnesses.
I’ve always considered speaking naturally about our bodies — despite our clunky linguistic options and, these days, a budding pair of eye-rolling adolescents — a parenting basic. But that day, saying the word “penis” in a parking lot also felt vaguely like protest. (more…)
Vagina! Vagina! Vagina!
Sort of boring, isn’t it? After a while?
Boredom is an operational word to keep in mind while reading “Vagina,” by Naomi Wolf. It is always an achievement when an author makes sex a chore to read about. To get to the end, you have to have a high (more…)
I’ve been super busy these last few months, thus I’ve neglected you. My apologies. Much has happened in the world of vaginas since I last reached out to all of you. That said, here’s a question for you…would you get an injection in your vagina that cost upwards of $1,000 if it promised months of enhanced sexual pleasure and heightened orgasms?
I am writing to you tonight about rape. It is 2 AM and I am unable to sleep here in the Democratic Republic of Congo. I am in Bukavu at the City of Joy to serve and support and work with hundreds, thousands of women who have been raped and violated and tortured from this ceaseless war for minerals fought on their bodies. (more…)
In what may be the most shocking and disgusting tip ever given, a recent study suggests that a newly discovered protein found in mammal semen can cause female mammals to enter ovulation.
Though it has been proven to trigger a sudden period of ovulation, this protein, which was first found in llama semen by intrepid scientists and has since been found in multiple other species including humans, has an uncertain effect on how fertile a biological female is. (more…)
To All My Mommy Survivors,
“Mommy Uncensored: Confessions of a Real Mom” chronicles a mom’s uncharted journey through the crazy realities of motherhood. Watch as she exposes the hilarious experiences that change her familiar marriage, body and life forever. Tune in. This is a webisode you do NOT want to miss! Click here to view the trailer. Happy Monday, Survivors.
Young women who have a minimally invasive treatment for uterine fibroids are more likely to have a recurrence than older women are, a new study finds.
Fibroids are non-cancerous growths that form from muscle cells and other tissue in the wall of the uterus.
In the new study, Italian researchers looked at long-term results from one fibroid treatment option: uterine artery embolization, in which tiny particles are injected into blood vessels leading to the uterus, cutting off the fibroids’ blood supply and shrinking them.
They found that of 176 women treated with embolization, the “clinical failure” rate was 18 percent over seven years.
That meant that the women’s symptoms came back after initially getting better — typically after three years.
And women age 40 or younger accounted for a large share of those recurrences: They were almost six times more likely to see their symptoms come back, versus women who underwent embolization after age 40. (more…)
SYDNEY – Many women Olympic athletes go on contraceptive pills over worries that their period will fall on the day of a critical event and blight their chances of winning a medal.
For all but distance runners in the second half of their menstrual cycle competing on a hot day, their worries are misplaced, an Australian researcher said Thursday.
“There’ve been gold medals won and world records set at each stage of the menstrual cycle, so it’s not as if there’s clear evidence there saying you can’t win a medal when you’re having your period,” Newcastle University’s Xanne Janse de Jonge said.
And it could be that further research into hormonal changes will allow athletes to harness the menstrual cycle to actually improve performance because early work shows that they may be stronger nine to 13 days after the start of bleeding.
“The easiest way to split it up is the first two weeks and the second two weeks,” de Jonge said. “The second two weeks of the monthly cycle are when the temperature is higher, and that’s definitely where temperature regulation is a problem.” (more…)
In the study, college women were no more likely to say they had an intense desire for chocolate during the days leading up to their period compared with other days.
In addition, the stage of the women’s menstrual cycle did not affect their cravings for high-fat foods, or the amount of chocolate they ate, the researchers said.
The new findings contradict earlier studies, which found an increase in reports of chocolate cravings in the days before menstruation. However, these studies may have included women with eating disorders, such as bulimia, which could affect the results, the researchers said. The new study included only women without eating disorders.
In addition, past studies often asked women to think back in time, instead of asking about current cravings, as the new study did.
However, the new study was small — just 35 women — and so further research is needed to confirm the results, the researchers said.
Women came into the laboratory at two stages of their menstrual cycle: the late luteal phase, or seven days before menstruation at the most, and the late follicular phase, the time about midway through the cycle, before an egg is released. Participants were included in the study only if they had regular periods, and if they said they had craved chocolate at least once in the past six months.
The researchers validated the women’s stage within their cycles by measuring their levels of luteinizing hormone, a hormone that triggers ovulation.
The researchers asked the women about food cravings before and after presenting them with a bowl of chocolate. They noted that showing people food is known to increase cravings, and that the study did not examine whether changes in mood experienced outside the laboratory could trigger such cravings.
“Further research is needed to determine the role of food cravings in response to emotions across the menstrual cycle,” the researchers said.
The study will be published in an upcoming issue of the journal Appetite. It was conducted by Megan Apperson McVay of Louisiana State University and colleagues.