Is it even possible to be grateful while you’re trying EVERYTHING to conceive and it just feels impossible? How can you have gratitude when your period comes?
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See the full transcript below:
Today, I might not be in my fullest of games, but I’m here and I’m with you and, again, happy to be here. And we’re going to talk about gratitude for our periods. And before I get into that, for all of you that are new to me, welcome. I know we get a lot of new members, followers on a regular basis. I am Aimee Raupp or AimeeRaupp.com. I am the bestselling author of this book, Yes, You Can Get Pregnant, and then I’ve also authored a few other books, this one on auto-immunity and this one on general health. And they’re all awesome reads.
These are my two most popular ones. Obviously this one for all of the fertility girls is a very popular book, and thank you for making it a bestseller. It has helped thousands and thousands of women all over the world, and I myself have been working with women all over the world for many years, helping them achieve their dream pregnancy and helping them figure out how to optimize their health. The thing that I always like to point out is fertility is an extension of health and that’s it. Plain and simple. Period, pun intended.
And your period, your menstrual cycle… I’m a practitioner of Chinese medicine. I’ve been an acupuncturist and herbalist for 17 years. Prior to that, I was a biologist. I had a biology and chemistry degree. I’ve done master’s level education in neuroscience, and so a bit of a science nerd. But I will tell you that your period I know when you’re trying to conceive really sucks when it comes and is a reason to beat yourself up for most women of all the things you did or didn’t do right that month that didn’t lead to conception or question all the reasons why you didn’t conceive that month.
But your period is legitimately a vital sign. It is your body telling us many things about it and how it works and how it does it work and what kinks need to be repaired. I wanted to read to you from Yes, You Can Get Pregnant what a healthy menstruation phase looks like. But before I say anything, I want to also really remind everyone that we are not robots. Okay? We are not perfect. We can be imperfect and still get and stay pregnant.
And your period is not meant to be the same exact period every single month, because your life is not the same exact thing day in and day out. You don’t eat the same exact things. You’re not exposed to the same exact things. You don’t have no stress or a lot of stress every single day. Sleep impacts. Travel impacts. COVID impacts. The election impacts our cycle as a whole, and so to understand that a regular cycle should also have flexibility.
A woman can have a 28-day cycle one month and a 36-day cycle the next month and that is not a bad thing, as long as, in my opinion, as long as you ovulate and then have a 12 to 14 day luteal phase, you are doing good. I’ve had girls with polycystic ovarian syndrome, and sometimes they don’t ovulate until it’s like they’re 50. They could still get pregnant. We just got to nail their ovulation, right? To keep that in mind that we’re not robots.
When there’s this focus on being grateful for our periods, I think we can be grateful for a few things, grateful that it’s coming with some regularity, grateful that it tells us a lot about our body, grateful if you are trying to conceive that this is another opportunity to conceive, another month to give it a shot. In Chinese medicine, the period is when your body says, “I have enough. I have enough to give up. I have an overflow of blood, and I’m just so vibrant and vital, I’m spilling it out.” Grateful for that vitality.
It is really a vital sign. It truly is, and so grateful for that experience. It’s obviously sad when you’re trying to conceive and getting a period. I do think you can mourn that and you should mourn that sadness, that disappointment, but I do think it’s also an opportunity to reflect on the changes that you’re seeing in your body, especially if you’re following say like one of my programs or reading my book and following the dietary and the supplement recommendations, or you’ve been meditating more, or you are sleeping more.
You’re getting to bed between 10:00 and 11:00 and you’re seeing changing your cycle. Did I say meditating more, or you’re eating more healthy fats and cutting back on gluten or dairy. And you had less cramps, and you less clots and the color was brighter red, right? It’s a time to really reflect on the changes too and to not use it as an excuse to just beat yourself up. What I talk about in Yes, You Can Get Pregnant, your optimal menstrual cycle.
A regular menstrual cycle comes every 28 to 35 days, but I would put an asterisk next to that of like but you are not a robot and some cycles are different and it’s okay. The flow should be bright red and come and go in tapered fashion. That I fully believe should happen. The first one to two days are the heaviest, so you’re changing about six to eight regular tampons or pads or three to four super tampons or pads. And I really do strongly urge pads over tampons.
And the flow tapers off gently over the next two to three days where you’re using about two to four regular pads. There should be minimal clotting, slight breast tenderness, and very little cramping. Besides the cycle length, which the cycle length is basically the length between cycle day one, the first day of bleeding, and the next time you bleed. That can vary month to month and that doesn’t mean anything’s wrong, but everything else should be the same, that amount of blood, the color of the blood, very minimal clots, very minimal cramping.
Very important. If we’re seeing clots and we’re seeing cramping, we’re seeing dark colored blood, those are all signs that there are some kinks to fix in the system. Typically, too cold in the uterus, blood stagnation. These are from Chinese medicine perspective, and we need to enhance the quality of the blood. If you don’t have good quality blood as shown… A good quality looking bloody period is that bright fresh red blood without clots and without cramping.
If you have darker blood, brown blood, too light blood, too dark blood, too purple, too clotty with lots of cramps, it tells me right off the bat that the endometrial lining is just not as inviting as it should be for implantation of an embryo. And also though that the quality of the blood isn’t as healthy as it should be to really nourish and mature that follicle that you developed that you were hoping to become a child. That’s not to say, there’s women with heavy, clotty, crampy, purple menstrual cycles that kept pregnant.
But if you are struggling with trying to get pregnant and you do have some of those symptoms, those are things that you can work on. There’s gratitude there of learning about your body. I think that is the biggest takeaway. Like how can I be grateful for this process that my body gets to do every month? It’s a sign of health and vitality. And then how can I continue to shift and tweak my body to better support it so that if I am trying to conceive, so that I am more fertile and efficient ovulation too. So say you get your period.
You’re actively trying to conceive. You’re bummed. You’re pissed. What can you do about it? So again, how do you get good quality blood? Are these types of foods we eat? Yes. The number one way we build blood from a Chinese medicine perspective is through the food we eat and we say the air we breathe. Food, really important. I’m not going to get into it. I mean, I have tons of videos on my YouTube and on my IG Live on quality and things like that, but really get these books and follow them and then you will figure out what you need to eat from my perspective.
Go find my fertility plate posts that we always post regularly, probably at least once a quarter on Instagram and Facebook. Find that. It’s a pretty picture. Follow that. That’s the food recommendations. The air we breathe part is not just like good quality air. I hope we’re not living in a toxic environment or around a lot of environmental toxins. But the relationships we keep, like literally the way we take in our world. What are we taking in? What are we holding onto? What burdens are we carrying that we no longer need to carry?
That stuff weighs us down, weighs down our spleen. Our spleen is what makes the blood. Our liver stores the blood, so the spleen and the liver in Chinese medicine are very involved in blood quality. And the liver gets really impacted by frustration and anger, and the spleen gets really impacted by worry and pensiveness and second guessing. How are we taking in our world? I really think there is a mental, emotional piece to blood building, and then there’s this physical nutritional piece to blood building.
And also to point out that if you’re eating a diet filled with foods that you can’t digest, you’re not going to absorb nutrients and you are not going to be able to build good quality blood. You could be eating really good quality vegetables and all organic and your bone broth. But if you’re still consuming like maybe dairy, gluten or soy, those seem to be the most common ones, I’m not trying to be trendy, I’m just speaking from 17 years of clinical experience, those could be impacting your ability to absorb your supplements and the nutrition from all the other foods.
That is why it’s so important. And even if you’ve had any of those food sensitivity tests, I don’t think it matters, and you’ve shown no sensitivity to dairy or gluten. If you’re having trouble trying to conceive, or you have periods that are bad and the blood isn’t bright red and fresh, and you do have clots and cramping, you got to give it a shot. I’ll say that. And then if you are doing all those things and you still have issues, you’ve got to look at the emotional piece. I tend to like you to look at them both at the same time, but sometimes that can be too much.
In there, again, like say you get that period and you want to use it as a reason to beat yourself up, could you honor the sadness, because you’re trying for something, then it didn’t happen and that sucks. And I think you have every right to honor that and feel sad for yourself for a time being. You can throw a pity party. Maybe not for too long, but you can throw a pity party. And then I want you to say, “Okay. Well, what can I learn from this period? What can I learn from this cycle? What are things that then I could try to do differently next month?
Or maybe I’m doing everything I need to do. The cycle looked great. It just wasn’t my time. Maybe I just need to continue to surrender and be in the moment and trust the timing of my life,” which is really hard to do, but definitely really important. Or maybe it was a really heavy or a clotty period, or maybe there were really bad cramps or you got diarrhea during it or nausea, vomiting, headaches, migraines, your boobs felt huge, like all these things. These are signs that there’s hormonal imbalances, and there’s things you can work on.
To go back to I think my book, Yes, You Can Get Pregnant, is a really good starting point if you haven’t read that. And then if you have been doing that and it’s still not working, then go to my book, Body Belief, which is a little more aggressive on the diet front and I think on the emotional front and that’s where you go. Is FODMAP diet any good? Yeah. Again, it depends on your symptoms. If you have SIBO-like symptoms, which I’m not going to get into today, but you can Google that or search it, going low FODMAP can be very helpful for people.
It really just depends. What are your thoughts on using castor oil packs during your period, either abdomen or liver? I hear mixed thoughts on the issues. It depends. If I have someone that has a really painful, clotty, heavy period, I’ll have them use it during their period. But if they don’t and I don’t want to cause too much blood to come out, I might not use the castor oil packs. So it really is a case by case basis, but I always do recommend castor oil packs up until ovulation. Once you think you could be pregnant, don’t do them.
If you’re on your period and you’re feeling crampy or you’re craving the heat, hot water bottle is always great, and then you could do a castor oil pack. It really just depends on the case. I’m not against them by any means. If a woman doesn’t have a ton of blood and they’re lighter menstrual cycles, I might not use the castor oil pack, but it really just depends on the entire picture of the case, because sometimes they can cause heavier bleeding than necessary. So that’s what you want to be weary of. Thank you so much for your guidance.
I suffered a loss last week. I’m so sorry, Trish. Just purchased Body Belief and been reading. Sending you love, Trish. However we can support, but the books are a good place to start. What if it’s not bright red? What does that mean? It can mean cold. It can mean dry. It can mean stagnation. It kind of just depends, again, on other symptoms, but your goal is that bright red blood, fresh, bright red blood. Michelle Clifford, my fertility coach associate, she says like paper cut blood. That’s what you want to see, like that fresh, bright red blood.
I ordered my 2021 planner and designed the front to say, “I trust the timing of my life.” Love that philosophy, oh, I love that Fallon. Let’s see. Are hot packs better than cold packs? Yes. Some women crave cold, but very, very rare. But Chinese medicine, uh-uh (negative). We want that uterus to be warm and cozy and hospitable. We recommend warm and preferably hot water bottles, not heating pads because of the electricity. What constitutes clots? Mine are super tiny, like almost miss them if I wasn’t looking. Is that a clot?
No. Okay. That’s a good point. Thank you so much for that question. What looks like wet Kleenex or like tissuey stringy clots, totally normal. That’s the endometrial lining. But clots that are like dime, nickel, quarter, golf ball, not normal. Okay? I stopped carbs and I had a great period. Yeah, so that is a very common thing that we’ll see. Grains are highly inflammatory for many people. It’s not even just gluten, it’s grains, and can really help with the inflammation in your body basically and also help with absorption.
You remove them, you absorb your nutrition better. Your body gets what it needs. You have a healthier period. I throw up on my first day and have been for years. Any suggestions as to why? I’m generalizing here, Kristen, so I don’t want to diagnose you here because I’m not a medical doctor, but a lot of times I see that with endometriosis. I would really urge following the recommendations in this book, Kristen, to help you with that. It is not normal. You should not have cramps so bad that you can’t leave your house.
You should not bleed so heavily that you can’t leave your house. You should not throw up. You should not have diarrhea. You should not have a migraine. And I’m not shaming you if you have those things or saying that there’s something terribly wrong with you. It’s all fixable. I promise that. But you should not suffer with your period. It should come on gently and pass gently, and you shouldn’t feel too wiped out. I mean, we all have our off months. That’s okay, again, because we’re not robots and life happens.
Shit happens. Right? But generally speaking, it shouldn’t be that big of an ordeal. I usually have a five day period, but this last one was only two and a half days. Could that be a hormonal imbalance? Yes, 100% it could be a hormonal imbalance and it likely is. Again, we’re not robots, so one-off periods that are wonky, I usually never flag women. “Oh, I spotted this cycle, but then it never happens again.” Not a big deal. I have a lighter period. I just would usually look at like… I just had one woman and she had a lighter period.
Then when I did more digging, she was doing this intense cycling. What’s it called? Like a month of this intense program with friends and it was a big cycle day right before… It fell right before her period. She had a lighter period. A period blood in Chinese medicine is one of our yin fluids. It’s a fluid. It’s a substance. If you lose too many fluids in other areas, like in sweating, for instance, you will light in your period. So a lot of women, they overexercise and their periods are light.
I got to get them to cut back on the exercise and then the period will be abundant, and then maybe that will help them get pregnant. Going back to this subject of gratitude for your period, it’s a vital sign when it comes easily like the way I say. The blood is bright red, and you’ve had a good healthy luteal phase, and you saw a good ovulation, but you’re still not pregnant, yes, that’s disappointing. However, you should celebrate how your body is speaking to you. And it’s saying it has everything it needs and it’s working great.
And you should be proud of that. If it doesn’t have all those things and there are some kinks, then you should be able to reflect and, and gratitude for the things that you can continue to work on. Remember, fertility is an extension of health. Your hormones and their balance are an extension of health, so you go back to the drawing board. What can I try differently this cycle? Maybe that will be the missing link for me. And cycles that aren’t optimal, right? They give us these clues of like, what more can I work on in my body?
What further kinks can I work on healing? And every period is the start of a new month, a new opportunity to invite in this little one to stay. I love that experience, trusting the timing of your life, so letting go of the grip being so tight that this baby needs to happen right here, right now. My period starts and stops a day later. What does this mean? Are 36-day cycles normal? They can be. If that’s what happens for you, it’s normal, as long as, again, ovulation happens about 14 days before.
The start and stop sometimes is like either it runs out of energy, so it stops bleeding for a little bit. And then when it gets more energy when you rest a little bit, then bleeding comes, or it’s what we call in Chinese medicine liver cheese stagnation. There are some pent up emotions or frustrations that need to be worked on. I worried I get blood clots, but they are bright red. But also within these clots is attached skin or mucus. Is this normal? No, not necessarily. It’s telling me there’s stagnation in there. It could be phlegm or mucus in the endometrial lining.
Continuing to do all the things, especially I think in that case, like castor oil packs, acupuncture, Chinese herbs, really reducing the phlegmy style foods from your diet. Do castor oil packs help with clotting? Yes, 100%. Been hitting minimum 80 grams of protein a day. Is there anything else to encourage lush endometrial lining? Currently my periods are two heavy days with a day of spotting and bookends. Yeah. I mean, the castor oil packs. If you’re not doing them, Chinese herbs, if you have access to a good herbalist.
That’s another thing I would do. Make sure you’re getting in six to eight servings of vegetables. I said it recently on one of my calls, I think when someone follows a diet that I recommend it’s super easy to get the protein I think, but it’s not so easy to get in the six to eight servings of vegetables. That’s a lot of vegetables, guys, and you really need six to eight servings of vegetables to really help flush out your system. I would also make sure three to four grams of fish oil a day is another really good way to lower inflammation and enough methyl folate.
Make sure your vitamin D levels are in check. All those things, you want to work on all those things. I had light pink spotting for one day a week before my period. However, my period didn’t come. I’m nervous if it’s perimenopausal, or could I be pregnant? I’m two weeks late and I’m 44. Well, if you haven’t taken a pregnancy test, I would take one. And then the other thing is you could have like the follicular cyst from a cycle before and maybe it delayed ovulation, which then is delaying your period.
If you take a pregnancy test and it’s negative, I would do castor oil packs every single day. You could also consider going to your gynecologist for a transvaginal ultrasound and see what else is going on on the inside. Another thing too, the perimenopausal thing comes up a lot. I think good way to look at it is we’re all pretty much perimenopausal once we start menstruating, because we’re getting closer and closer to the end of our menstrual years, but most women menstruate into their late forties.
You could still have off cycles here and there, but it doesn’t necessarily mean doom and gloom menopause is here. I regularly get two-day medium, bright red bleeding and then it tapers off. Is this a sign of underlying issue? No, it might be a little light, so I would focus on the blood building that I talked about in the beginning. What is the best castor oil to buy? And does it have to be organic? I just recommend hexane free and whatever you can find, but just hexane free. Yes, You Can Get Pregnant recommends full fat dairy and butter, but Body Belief says no dairy.
Will you please share what is the recommendation? So it really depends on the person. Yes, You Can Get Pregnant recommends full fat dairy in moderation and mainly in the form of yogurt. It’s fermented dairy. Butter is also fermented, which is then easier to digest, but Yes, You Can Get Pregnant also does say, if you have reactions to dairy, do not consume it. It’s just saying if you don’t have any reactions to dairy and you don’t have an autoimmune condition, you could have dairy in moderation, but it must be full fat and it must be organic.
Body Belief is really geared towards people with autoimmune conditions, which I would also throw in there endometriosis and polycystic ovarian syndrome and maybe premature ovarian aging, because they all have autoimmune characteristics. And when treated like an autoimmune disease, they seem to respond very well. But also if a patient does have a known autoimmune condition that has been diagnosed like Hashimoto’s or celiac or Crohn’s disease or colitis or things of that nature, 100% need to be dairy-free. So it really just depends on the case.
And then I do have those certain cases that have tried everything, they’re still not getting pregnant. So then I say let’s try the Body Belief diet, because you’ve already been doing the Yes, You Can Get Pregnant diet and it’s not working. Let’s get a little more aggressive. And then sometimes that can work too. There’s an answer. I have a five day period, but this last one was only two. I already answered that question. Since having COVID, my cycle has gone wonky and my endo pain is flaring up. What would you recommend to try to get back to normal?
I would follow the purify phase in Body Belief and do regular castor oil packs. That’s what I would do. It seems to take a big toll on people’s bodies. I’ve seen it. I’ve had a couple of cases that have had it and their periods are really wonky after. So absolutely. Okay, guys, let’s see. I’m going to wrap up here because I’m just not feeling my best. You guys all know that I think there are ways to find gratitude for our period, and I went over them.
And then as well for being on and tuning in, I’m going to give you a free access to my Living In Harmony With Your Menstrual Cycle Guide. Instagram, just DM us and we’ll give you the link, and then Facebook, we’ll post the link here, but it is a guide to optimize each week and each phase of your menstrual cycle. It’s a really good starting point for so many of you that are worried about little kinks in your system during your period. Okay? So again, Instagram, DM us and we’ll give you access to it. It’s called Living In Harmony With Your Menstrual Cycle Guide.
It’s really cool. It’s got some dietary recommendations, some movement recommendations, some mantras. Really nice guide. And then Facebook, we’re going to post it here for you guys. Have you had any miracles with women getting pregnant with POF, but otherwise very healthy? Yes, I have. Thank you so much for taking the time today when you aren’t feeling. You are amazing. Oh, thank you, guys. Okay. Love you. Bye, guys. Bye, bye, bye.
Aimee Raupp is a licensed herbalist, natural fertility expert and acupuncturist in NYC, offering natural fertility treatment, care & coaching solutions to women who want to get pregnant! Get pregnant fast with natural fertility care, Aimee’s online fertility shop & coaching solutions. Aimee Raupp has helped hundreds of women to get pregnant naturally! Aimee and her team are experts in Chinese Medicine, Massage & Eastern Nutrition! Get pregnant naturally, achieve optimal health & vitality, take control of your health! Aimee is excited to work with you at one of the Aimee Raupp Wellness Centers NYC. Aimee’s Fertility Coaching Program is a personal guidance along your fertility journey. If you are trying to get pregnant naturally, this program is for you! Aimee Raupp offers holistic, wellness and natural fertility books. Learn how to enhance your fertility and get pregnant naturally with Aimee’s cookbooks and diet guides!
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