MENSTRUATION MATTERS

When Can We Write the Obituary for the Critical Timing Hypothesis?

What Happened? The highlight of last week’s meeting of the North American Menopause Society (NAMS) meeting was a presentation of the primary results of the KEEPS study (Kronos Early Estrogen Prevention Study). A press release describing the findings, along with a list of FAQ (frequently asked questions), is available on the Kronos website. KEEPS was designed to confirm the critical...

The woman, the serpent and the cycle

According to a recent study, women are best at picking out a picture with a snake during the days immediately before their period. You might think this would be a surprise, given the general idea of premenstrual compromise in women. Mind you, there isn’t much data to support poorer thinking or performance for women during the premenstrual period. However,...

Childhood abuse and menarcheal age

Last month I wrote about menarcheal age in Ethiopian girls, and that food insecurity leads to a delay in the onset of menstruation. This fits with the general response of the reproductive system to energetic stress – low energy leads to suppression of the hypothalamus, which interferes with ovulatation and, in stronger cases, with menstruation itself. But, it would seem,...

Food insecurity is associated with later puberty

Many girls in Africa have insecure access to food, that is, they worry about getting enough food, and they sometimes eat less than they want, or go without food. There are two theories about how this might affect the onset of menstruation (menarche). One is that the limitations in energy and nutrition might slow development, resulting in a later menarcheal...
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