There's a Reason You're Extra Tired During Your Period

You're not just imagining it.

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When you're dealing with bleeding, bloating, cramps, acne, and all the other fun side effects of your period, you want to feel top-notch so you can power through it. But unfortunately, your flow can seem to drain your energy, and it sucks. It turns out there's an actual medical reason that explains why you get so tired on your period.

Detroit-based pediatrician Dr. Molly O'Shea broke down the science for U by Kotex.

In the 10 days or so before your period, your body is geared up in the hopes that the egg you sent down the old fallopian tube met some sperm there and landed in a plush uterus ready to grow a baby. When your uterine lining isn't invaded by a fertilized egg, the hormones sustaining the environment aren't needed anymore and the hormone levels plummet. When this happens, your body goes from high alert to nothing hormonally and that shift causes other changes too and all of those changes are exhausting. Until your hormone levels increase again, you are really tired.

Your hormones start to climb about a week after your period begins, and they hit their peak when you ovulate (typically about two weeks after the start of your period). As your hormones surge, so does your energy.

On days you're feeling more zombie than human, you can recharge by staying hydrated, exercising, eating regular healthy meals, and getting a minimum of eight hours of sleep. And if that's still not cutting it, just know that your energy is coming back in a few days.

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(Image credit: Marie Claire)
Hannah Orenstein