Athletic Women And Period Loss Must Be Addressed

Athletic women around the world are losing their periods due to exercise and energy imbalances. This is an issue that’s on the rise and I cannot understand why it hasn’t been addressed. Some girls are losing their period at very young ages, starting from just three to five workouts per week.

Generally, this condition starts to happen as a result of both intense exercise and a restrictive diet. It’s not uncommon either for those who are involved in fitness to cut back on portion sizes and certain foods. In fact, female athletes do this either because they’re trying to stay lean to compete or to maintain the ‘athletic build’ they think they need to maintain. Therefore, extreme weight loss often occurs leaving these ladies with very little body fat, which may cause disturbances to a women’s menstrual cycle.

The problem seems to be that many fit girls and women are simply ignoring the problem because they couldn’t be phased about missing a couple of periods. However, what they’re unaware of is the long-term effects it can have on your overall health.

Athletic Women Should Take Note

The absence of your period is known as Amenorrhea. While the name might sound a little foreign, it is actually a really common problem, which doctors usually associate with professional athletes. Unfortunately, a lot of people assume that not getting your period is a sign of being ultra-fit and that your body is adapting to high levels of exercise. In certain cases, this can also happen as a result of an eating disorders.

Nancy Williams, the professor of kinesiology and physiology at Penn State University says signs of menstrual dysfunction occur in as many as 60 percent of recreational athletes. However, everyday women are just as susceptible to losing their periods. Nicola Rinaldi, author of ‘No Period. Now What?’ found a wide range of exercise frequency and intensity among women who’ve lost their periods. This includes women who exercise three to four days a week for less than an hour and women who don’t exercise at all. This was a survey that consisted of over 300 women.

Sometimes the doctors struggle to establish the exact cause of the problem. Moreover, the issue becomes more confusing when your body mass index (BMI) says that you are a healthy weight for your frame.

How Does Exercise Cause Irregular Periods?