One of the most common questions we get here at Eve is around when to collect your sample. The answer to this question becomes much more accurate if you’re tracking the main events of your cycle.
But tracking your cycle isn’t just important if you’re doing an Eve Hormone Balance test.
In our humble opinion, tracking your cycle is one of the most important daily habits you get to implement for better hormone health and understanding. Let us explain why.
1. Knowing If, And When, You Ovulate
By tracking your cycle you can see if, and when, you ovulate; and ovulation is so much more than just the time in your cycle when you can get pregnant.
Ovulation occurs around the halfway point of your cycle when an egg is released from a mature follicle, which then slips out of your ovary and floats up into your fallopian tube.
Once this has taken place, the corpus luteum (cells that form in the ovary after the egg has been released) produce lots of lovely progesterone that plays many roles in our bodies.
Essentially, ovulation = progesterone. And progesterone is kind of a big deal. If you have ever had an anovulatory cycle (a cycle where you don’t ovulate), you’ll know that life without progesterone is zero fun.
Progesterone is a wonderful, balancing hormone that:
Low levels of progesterone can lead to all sorts of niggly PMS signs such as mood swings, bloating, headaches and weight gain.
It’s important for us to know how long these phases are. If the follicular phase is too short, the follicle may not have enough time to properly mature the egg before releasing it. Immature eggs cannot be fertilised.
If your luteal phase is too short, your body may not have enough time to produce adequate levels of progesterone.
2. Measure of Health
Ovulation is an overall great indicator of women’s health.
If you’re ovulating nicely and regularly around the middle of your cycle it’s a good sign that other areas of your health are also working nicely.
Inversely, if you’re not ovulating, or you are ovulating too early to too late in your cycle, this may be an indicator that other aspects of your wellness may need your attention.
All these things can affect when, and if, you ovulate:
- Life stress
- Gut issues (IBS, leaky gut)
- Food intolerances
- Poor diet
- Exercise (or over-exercising)
- Lifestyle choices that don’t serve you
If your ovulation could be healthier, ask yourself which of the health aspects listed above might be taking their toll on your body and take action.
3. Relationship with Body
Another bonus of tracking your cycle that we can’t emphasise enough, is that checking in with your body everyday helps you to rebuild a new relationship with your body.
So many of us feel detached from ourselves from the neck down and have relationships with our bodies that are built around frustration and resentment, rather than compassion and understanding.
Taking 30 seconds to check in with yourself every day, and getting a quick message from your body saying where it’s at helps to rebuild this relationship based on understanding.
It helps you to see where you are in your cycle, which can affect your mood and what you’ll feel like doing and therefore you can treat yourself more compassionately as you go through your cycle.
4. Fertility Management / Contraception
The final benefit of tracking your cycle is that whether you’re trying to get pregnant, or actively trying not to get pregnant, tracking your cycle is a great way of helping with that!
Contrary to popular misconceptions, you can only actually get pregnant around 3-5 days either side of your day of ovulation. This means that for the majority of the month you're actually not fertile.
Therefore, if you want to get pregnant or you don't, knowing when you ovulate is hugely helpful information to have.
Note: if you choose to use the natural fertility method as your choice of contraception we highly recommend getting guidance from a specialist who can help you figure out the subtle signs of your body so you can do this successfully. Most unwanted pregnancies in women using this method occur when the woman is missing some key details in understanding her cycle.
So Basically, Cycle Tracking is the Bomb
Whether you’re wanting to get pregnant, not get pregnant, feel your best, look after your body, optimise your health, work on your self-love and care or prepare to do an Eve Hormone Balance test; you need to be tracking your cycle daily.
Don’t forget to check out our blog 5 Common Signs of Hormone Imbalances to see if your hormones could be lower or higher than they should be, in a way that prevents you feeling your best.