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Period 10 days early


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I just go my period about 10 days early - no symptoms. I have read a lot of posts about progesterone and estrogen levels and am very familiar with the Take Charge of Your Fertility book. What I seem to be missing is how the foods I am eating and not eating are impacting the rise and fall of these hormone levels. In other words, why does the Whole30 diet affect my hormone levels? Can someone speak to that?

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It is natural to think it is the Whole30-style foods that are impacting the hormones because eating Whole30-style foods is new. However, the reality is that what was really affecting hormones was the old diet with soy, dairy, grains, etc. Whole30-style food is more benign and hormones are resetting to an environment that is not disturbing them.

If you have the ISWF book, it goes into more detail on which eliminated foods disrupt your normal hormonal balance.

FWIW, during my Whole30 in June, my period reappeared after not being around for 2 years (the latter was a 'normal' side effect of my birth control, per my gynecologist).  For me, I attributed the reappearance to removing soy (pre-W30, I would have soy milk daily in my morning coffee). As a result, I chose to not reintroduce soy and have been off it since.

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A clear example of what GFChris just said, was when, for certain reasons, I added in a bunch of dairy (pastured milk, raw pastured cheese and organic yogurt) to my diet that I hadn't eaten in a long time my periods became irregular and I had major PMS (very swollen breasts, fatigue, irritability) that I never had before. I also had breakouts specifically associated to drinking milk.

Now, I am only 6 days into my Whole30, but I should be only a few days away from getting my period and I wouldn't otherwise know (ie, lack of symptoms). I think with time, hopefully you will continue eating mostly Whole30 past the 30 days, you will find your period will normalize.

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Abigail, it's impossible for me to say how the Whole30 is affecting your hormones without doing specific lab testing. In general, diet plays a big role in female sex hormone balance, both directly and indirectly (through other hormones like insulin and cortisol). The foods you eat (particularly soy and dairy), environmental factors (like xenoestrogens) also play a role in hormone balance. So do lifestyle factors like exercise, sleep, and (a big one) stress.


I can't say how the Whole30 is affecting your hormones specifically because I don't know what things looked like going into the program. This is where the help of a good functional medicine doctor can come in handy - they can do a cortisol panel (looking at cortisol to DHEA ratio), and even a 28-day hormone panel measuring sex hormones throughout your cycle, and see where things stand. From there, you can infer how making positive dietary and lifestyle changes may impact your balance and your cycle... but without a good starting point, it's hard to say.


Sorry I couldn't be more helpful, but this stuff is complicated, and there aren't a lot of generalizations you can make.




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My periods were normal before this - every 28-30 days. So, getting it 10 days early I see as abnormal. I am not on any medications to moderate it so it is difficult to understand how going from normal without being on birth control, to abnormal, makes sense given that I am supposed to be eating healthier now than I was before.


It seems like some people are saying it will become normal again once my body gets used to this new diet. However, I was eating a very low grain, dairy, soy diet before this and hardly ate processed food in general, and I haven't seen much positive come out of the diet which I kind of attributed to not being on S.A.D. before I started.


The biggest physical change is not having sugar cravings, which is great. Other than that it has been more just understanding my relationship with food in a deeper way which has been interesting.

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Have you gone too low in carbohydrate? The Whole30 is not intended to be low carb, but some people inadvertently go too low when they cut out grain and legume based carbohydrates. Low carb can be a problem for women, much more so than men. Add in some sweet potato, winter squashes, carrot, turnip etc to your meals on a daily basis.

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