PERIOD! Can you say it out loud? So, what turned out to be a personal informative workshop is now a public share of awesome information and brands that you seriously need to know about for your monthly cycle. I felt very compelled to share primarily to lessen the taboo stigma of talking about our periods and fertility. Even as grown women, we tend to just go with the flow without much questioning and assuming a major part of the responsibility. Do you recall how much your mom taught you about your period, fertility and sex? Maybe like many, she just told you that you were not dying, to put a pad on your underwear and don't get pregnant or you really will die. Well, thankfully those times are passing by and we, women are becoming more open in learning about our bodies--knowledge is power. This is what the 'Natural Fertility and Birth Control' workshop hosted by Jessa Blade, a makeup artist, natural beauty expert and herbalist based in Brooklyn was all about--giving us the power to be effective about our beautiful reproductive bods in a natural way. The event took place at the Whythe Hotel in Brooklyn and the special guests were Katinka Locascio[ licensed Massage Therapist, Herbalist, Bodyworker and Labor Doula] from Earth and Sky Healing Arts and Erin Borbet[ licensed practitioner in the fields of Acupuncture, Chinese Herbal Medicine and Doula Services] from Grow Wellness. Upon entering the dim ambiance, I was greeted by a pair of wonderful ladies and Jessa herself[gorgeous skin by the way]. I made my way through for an herbal cocktail[non-alcoholic] --I seriously smelled the wonderful fusion of herbs all the way into screening room where the workshop took place.
Natural fertility and birth control is not only appealing for those with religious restrictions but to the overall person who wants a good healthy and productive body. It's about learning to work with the rhythm of our bodies naturally and put a slow-down or even a stop to the pile of drugs and objects out there that contribute to the increasing and never satisfying need of wanting things fast and in abundance[this includes sex], which leads to the 'contraceptive pill' argument and its associated health risks. What are your views on this?
Aside the great information given to us by Katinka and Erin, we were introduced to some amazing brands. A special one, I would like to point out is THINX whom I learned about in a fashion showcase this past New York Fashion Week. Before proceeding I do want to pass on a few pointers that I picked up during the workshop. Foremost, fertility doesn't just mean trying to get pregnant only, it starts when we are very young[so if you are a mom, break the mold and fully inform your daughter prior to her first period] and it encompasses your period and the time around it. It is also a very good idea to familiarize yourself with the anatomy of the reproduction system, if you have forgotten from those precious high-school sex ed classes. It will help understand in clarity how our bodies work.
The workshop emphasized on 'charting' which is the tracking of our basal body temperature[taken when you first open your eyes in the morning] not only to get pregnant, avoid pregnancy but to also aid in spotting other issues like thyroid and cysts--this may be viewed in evaluating the length of temperatures in certain phases of our cycle. Learning to take your temperature does have some conditions and uses a specific thermometer; same time everyday, not sick, full night of sleep and so on. A bit of reading on this is recommendable prior to start charting or recording your temperature. By the way these are some of our cycle phases: follicular, ovulatory, luteal, menstruation and each phase has its proper care in terms of foods and physical activity as well.
Something I found to be very interesting was the topic of 'Energetics of the Menstrual Cycle' What is it? Prior to answering, do you sometimes feel a certain renewal energy at the end of your period? That's called the 'New Moon' phase. The Energetics of the Menstural Cycle follows a 'moon phase' cycle example and it explains why you feel in a certain way in different phases of your period. Taking the 'New Moon' example above during this time the communication between both sides of the brain hemisphere and our judgement is enhanced. Katinka and Erin advise us that in this phase to think warm and nourishing foods that build blood like soups and stews. It's a good time to set goals, journaling, and rest during this time.
The last pointer I want to pass on is food as a healer. Food can help in aiding, depending on our individual health circumstances and with the help of a practitioner, hormone balancing, optimize our fertility and/or preserve our fertility for future conceiving plans. Some of the workshop recommended foods for deep nourishment are liver/organ meats, cod liver oil, pastured animal protein, coconut milk/oil and my current favorite bone broth along with probiotics.
So, without further due, below are four brands that will help take care of that body of yours throughout the month. Hope this post has sparked some inspiration in not only caring for you body more naturally but to also educate your young girls and talk freely with them about their lifelong journey of womanhood.
THINX | A revoluationary underwear made with technology that will hold up to 6 teaspoons.
KINDARA | An app that helps track your temperature and other montly cycle aspects as cervical fluid, tests, menstruation and active sex days.
THE PERIOD STORE | Monthly packages with everything you need for your period--it includes art and chocolate!
TRADITIONAL MEDICINALS | herbal teas created by herbalists for your health and wellness
This post can only handle so much information. There is definitely more[recipes, shopping lists and further resources] of it and lucky us, this wonderful and informative workshop will be repeated again. Get more information and stay tuned for the next one along with other awesome natural beauty and living workshops at www.jessablades.com
Other great informative resources on natural fertility are:
The Doctored Oath
Sweetening The Pill: How we all got hooked on hormonal birth control