8 Surprising Benefits of Getting Your Period

A monthly period can make life uncomfortable, socially awkward and even physically painful – but menstruation is surprisingly good for a woman’s physical, mental, and emotional health! These benefits of having a period will make you happy to menstruate.

“I’d always considered my period a nuisance,” says Dr Trina Read, author of Till Sex Do Us Part: Make Your Married Sex Irresistible. “When I was pregnant and later breastfeeding, it was a relief not to get my period. But after I had Andrew, I began missing it! It felt like a part of me went missing…and I was shocked by how happy I was to get my period back.”

Menstruation is good for a woman’s physical and emotional health. The benefits of having a period are especially good when your hormones are stable and your cycle is regular. Unfortunately, most women have irregular periods at least once or twice in their lives (which is why I write articles such as 9 Foods to Help You Get Regular Periods). But even if your menstrual cycle is unpredictable, you are still benefiting from having a period.

Before we dive into the benefits of getting your period, let’s acknowledge two serious problems with menstruation. One is premenstrual pain or PMS. Bloating and moodiness are uncomfortable symptoms of PMS – but the physical pain of menstruating can be extremely debilitating for some women (which is why I wrote 5 Proven Ways to Ease Painful PMS Symptoms). PMS is not an example of how menstruation is good for you!

I’ll save the second serious problem with getting monthly periods until the end of this article. Like bookends, or a sandwich; the best part is in the middle!

8 Surprising Benefits of Having Your Period

Some of this information can from gynecologist Dr Rebecca Booth’s The Venus Week: Discover the Powerful Secret of Your Cycle…at Any Age. She helps women feel less at the mercy of their hormones and more in control of their monthly cycles. In this updated and revised version, Dr Booth also reveals the surprising ways women can manage their body’s weekly hormonal shifts to their best advantage, no matter what age or stage of life they’re in. 

Okay, enough preamble! Here are the surprising benefits of getting your monthly visitor or “Aunt Flo”…

1. Your period can slow the aging process

Benefits of Getting Your Period
Surprising Benefits of Having a Period

Women age more slowly than men because menstruation causes iron loss, says to Dr. Thomas Perls, a leading U.S. longevity expert. Losing a lot of iron is not good because it leads to anemia, low energy, and other health problems. But too much iron feeds free radicals, which increase the risk of heart disease, stroke, and Alzheimer’s disease. When you have your period, you lose some iron every month. This can help lengthen your lifespan – and it may be one reason why women live longer than men. A longer life is a definite benefit of menstruation.

2. Your period offers hints that indicate and prevent disease

“When women menstruate, the color, odor, and texture of the menstrual blood can provide invaluable information as to the well-being of the woman,” says Dr Lauri Grossman, Chair of the Department of Medicine and Humanistic Studies at the American Medical College of Homeopathy. The benefit of paying attention to your menstrual blood is that it can offer early signs of developing illness and help prevent disease. It’s important to pay attention when you’re getting your period – even if it feels, looks, or smells gross. Your cycle may not be the prettiest discharge that leaves your body, but it can reveal what’s happening in your body.

3. Your period can lead to more satisfaction in the bedroom

When you’re menstruating, your testosterone (a hormone all women have, but most don’t have as much as men) increases and enhances libido. Testosterone makes bedroom activities better for some women, which can be a benefit for having a period. But should you have sex while menstruating? “There is no reason not to have sex while on your period,” says Dr Booth. “But, contrary to popular belief, pregnancy can happen if there is no contraception, because sperm can live for several days and fertilize the developing egg.”

4. Having regular periods gives you information about your hormones

A regular cycle isn’t just predictable, it offers the additional benefit of alerting you to a possible hormonal imbalance. If you normally get regular periods but you miss a month or two, your hormones may be out of balance (unless, of course, you’re pregnant, nursing or in menopause). A regular menstrual cycle shows that your body is working the way Mother Nature intended. “While most women associate premenstrual syndrome or PMS with their hormones, it’s actually the absence of hormones during this period (a few days before menstruation) that leaves them feeling less than ideal,” says Dr Booth.

5. Your period improves your mood and appearance

This isn’t true for all women – and of course, nothing is true for all women! But some women experience a happier mood and better appearance when they’re having their period. “The hormonal recipe that kicks in on or about day three or four triggers a significant improvement in how women feel and look,” writes Dr Booth in The Venus Week.

6. Getting your period reduces bloating

You may feel bloated and uncomfortable before you menstruate, but the benefit of actually having your period is less bloating and increased metabolism. “The period follows a drop in progesterone, a hormone that encourages water retention and slows metabolism,” says Dr Booth. “Usually a day or two after the period starts progesterone is low and most women lose water weight and metabolize carbs better.”

7. Your period is a natural cleanser for your body

Having a menstrual period is a natural cleansing process for internal system, which releases bacteria from inside the reproductive system and helps you discharge excess iron. This “cleaning process” can help lower the risk of cardiovascular disease. When you suppress or stop menstruation by using birth control pills, you may interfere with your breast and bone development. Your fertility levels are also affected when you don’t get your period for a long time. This is one of those benefits of having a period that isn’t visible or observable, but it is powerful.

8. Having a period can release pent-up frustration and anger

According to Traditional Chinese Medicine, the liver plays a pivotal role in both menstruation and whole-body health. When liver qi (energy) is stagnant, women experience irritability, tightness in the chest, and feelings of frustration and anger. Premenstrual symptoms or PMS are related to blocked liver qi. Having a period flow releases the liver qi that builds up every month; you benefit by feeling lighter, happier, and free!

At the beginning of this article I mentioned two problems with monthly menstruation, but only shared one.

Benefit of Getting a Period
Lena Menstrual Cup – a Benefit of Having a Period

The other serious problem with having monthly periods is the financial cost. Having your period every month is so expensive – especially if your flow is heavy and long! That’s why I’ve explored different ways to make menstruation cleaner and less expensive, such as Lena Menstrual Cup – Reusable Period Cup.

Another option for women who don’t want to pay for sanitary napkins are Heart Felt’s Sanitary Reusable Cloth Menstrual Pads. Reusing your menstrual pads may not seem like a benefit of having a period, but it’s so good for the environment! When you consider how much garbage a woman’s monthly period brings (used pads, plastic packaging, tampons flushed), you start to realize the benefits of reusing your sanitary supplies.

May your menstrual cycle be regular, your flow easy, and your body light. And may you enjoy the benefits of having a period – and hold on to the thought that one day they, too, will pass.


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26 thoughts on “8 Surprising Benefits of Getting Your Period”

  1. Meh, I still say menstruation might as well be a curse or punishment!
    I also noticed that you’re a Christian, “follower of Jesus.” Which reminds me, everything is the way it is because it’s how God made and planned it, correct? In that case, he created menstruation. If Heavenly Daddy dearest is so loving, wise, and benevolent, why didn’t he come up with a way for women to be able to have kids, that would be much more simple and not a major inconvenience and humiliation? But nope…
    We’re also taught that God creates us exactly the way we are, every single little detail. Correct? In that case, my being an “early bloomer” (I started developing breasts at age 10 and started my period at age 11, woo-hoo…) and even having autism, was his plan and will. Even though he knew darn well it would all be so challenging and humiliating, God decided it was best for me to be autistic and an “early bloomer.” Thanks a lot, Heavenly Daddy dearest… *sarcasm*
    Sorry for the brief vent. LOL

  2. This is very true, I have VERY SEVERE PCOS and at times feel like it’s ruined my life but I’m 19, and it’s never too late. I have to take progesterone pills for 10 days to induce my periods and I’ve realized the longer I go without one naturally (too much testosterone) then the worse off I feel mentally and physically… There’s a huge list of symptoms I have from having PCOS and being able to have a drug to force menstruation is so amazing, idk what I would do without it.

  3. I am a Christian too, i am from the light of the world. Thank you for this educational article on menstruation. God bless

  4. Hello ! 🙂 i just read the article , i searched if getting my period cleanse my body , and i got your article as a first answer , its great to know all those stuff !! .. im on it now and have a severe pain … but your article just made me feel a bit better , Thanks !! 🙂

  5. Thanks for your comments about the benefits of menstruation! I still don’t like getting my period, and look forward to menopause….hopefully without the hot flashes…

  6. I just got my IUD (mirena) tooken out, had it for 6 yrs, no cycle, i instantly felt my mood change..i was so moody before, and its good to hear all the benefits having a cycle, my body really needed this

  7. Thanks for your comments, Ally! I love hearing how getting your period improves your life.

    I too enjoy losing that water weight and bloating after my period is finished, and I am trying to look at my period as a sign of strength and power 🙂 In fact, I have read that women getting their periods are stronger than when they are not menstruating. I dont know if this is true, but I like believing it.


  8. I actually find this very helpful. I menstruate regularly, unlike most of my friends, and I’m actually glad to get mine every month because it reminds me I’m not going to be raising a kid anytime soon.. (I’m 21) My libido definitely goes up and my boyfriend actually doesn’t mind. I feel better a couple days in and definitely lose the water weight. And I’m actually in a better mood and happier and feel skinnier, even though I usually have a full 7 day long period! Lol 🙂

  9. I actually hate getting my period. I’m glad there are benefits to menstruating, but it’s my least favorite time of the month. I especially hate the bloating that happens before my period starts, and the messiness of my period. Gross.

  10. “Release anger and frustration”? Isn’t that just called PMSing? When it’s that time of month for someone I know she turns into this downright bitch before and during.
    Though I don’t become emotionally unstable, I actually look worse. No improvement in mood or appearance before or after, whatsoever. I guess it’s just the person, most of us unlucky ones just get pimples, and the opposite of bloat reduction. Food cravings, eat more, cramps=bloat.
    Ever heard of iron deficiency (most common in women)? Who exactly is turned on by their partner’s period? Things will be very messy if they do get together…
    As positive as this all sounds, few actually seem to apply from my experience.

  11. What surprises me most about periods is how they change! My periods today are different than they were 3 months ago, perhaps because I’m getting closer to menopause (I’m 42).

  12. Dear Arlene,

    Thanks for your comment! It is amazing how important it is to have a regular monthly cycle, isn’t it? As much of a pain it is, I do feel like it’s a powerful, healthy, good part of being a woman.

    I’m glad you’ve decided to stop Mirena, and hope you enjoy getting your period again 🙂


  13. Hi, I’m so grateful that this is a very positive outlook on menstruation and lately have been missing my menstruation due to having an IUD-Mirena for the past two years. It really works though where it doesn’t work is where I am experiencing feelings of being unbalanced. Not having my regular menstrual cycle has a huge impact in the regulation of my bodily functions and I would caution any woman who is thinking of menstrual suppression by any means (i.e.; IUD-Mirena or new pills-Anya also marketed as Lybrel).
    While it’s great to have choices women should weigh the odds of this dysregulation in their bodies. I recently decided to discontinue the Mirena and the great thing is, there are so many other options of birth control! I really liked that this article specifies the benefits of cleansing which I miss the most when I had my menstrual periods, currently, I do not feel this cleansing since I still have menstrual suppression.

  14. Hi, can I post this on facebook as a note for my female friends it is very informational and I will add your info so that everyone knws who wrote it.

  15. Thanks for this information. I am getting a IUD next week and my doctor suggest me Mirena. In the beginning I like the fact of not having period for 5 years, but at the same time my mother always says that “menstruation clean your body” and I think that she is right.Thank you!