From Hilary Clinton haters to husbands all across the globe, a woman’s anatomy and menses have been the go-to for blame for centuries when it comes to women being outspoken, emotional or sometimes a little off their game. Of course anyone with ovaries is probably fairly confident that although we might toss an extra Hershey’s Cookies and Cream bar into our shopping basket once a month, most women can manage chocolate cravings and menstrual cramps and still carry on with business as usual. That goes for whether we’re balancing our household budget or the military budget of the United States.
But just in case there were any skeptics, a recent study published in Frontiers In Behavioral Neuroscience is shutting down any doubt. Health.com reports Brigitte Leeners, MD, professor of reproductive endocrinology at University Hospital Zurich, and her colleagues tested three cognitive skills at four times a month in 88 women, 68 of whom were assessed for two months. The women were monitored on their ability to remember things they’d seen, to pay attention to visual and auditory information at the same time, and to maintain conscious control over their thoughts. Researchers also determined their levels of estrogen, progesterone, and testosterone, the sex hormones that vary throughout your cycle. In the end it was found there was no connection between hormone levels and the women’s ability to do any of these tasks.
Do these findings mean PMS doesn’t exist? Dr. Leeners made it clear that although some women can indeed attribute a lapse in cognitive ability due to fluctuation in their hormones during their period, most women don’t experience any significant impairment during their period besides the hell that is summer, sanitary napkins and chaffing. In other words, although we may cuss out a few more people or become Grand Marshall of the Petty Parade for three or four days out of the month, it doesn’t mean we aren’t coming with receipts and cold, hard facts.
Dr. Leeners believes that past studies that proved otherwise were more than likely skewed by society’s personal beliefs more than any actual findings. So if you’re trying to come for any woman and her ability to be a boss and deal with sexist bias against her uterus, you might want to look past her Kotex and come correct, because you better believe we will, no matter the flow.
Do you feel like you don’t perform as well mentally while on your period?