As women, our reproductive systems are the center of our power, the place from which our capacity to change the world around us radiates. With so much of our vibrant selves resting on the wellness of this part of our bodies, it is critical that we know how to best support and care for it.
General Regime for the Care of the Female Reproductive System
1. Practice your kegel exercises.
In terms of keeping the pelvic region healthy, kegel exercises are among the most important practices to do on a regular basis. Ensuring that the pubococcygeus is (PC) muscle, which supports the pelvic bowl, is strong helps to prevent a prolapsed uterus and urinary incontinence, and will improve vaginal sensitivity as well as vaginal lubrication (who doesn't want that?). Kegel exercises, which tone the PC muscle, can be done while working at your desk, reading on the couch or even standing in line at the grocery store. You can identify your kegel muscle by practicing stopping the flow of urine midstream. To perform the kegel exercise, squeeze the PC muscle repeatedly for ten minutes. Doing this regularly will result in a myriad of benefits for your reproductive and sexual health!
2. Learn to care for your cycle using the ancient wisdom of Ayurveda
In Ayurveda, the phases and symptoms of your cycle are characterized by the three doshas (vata, pitta, and kapha, each representing a unique combination of the five elements). By paying attention to the nuances of how you feel in the days leading up to your moon time, you can determine which elements are out of balance, and work to bring them back in to harmony within your body using specific foods and activities. Once you identify your PMS type, you'll be able to gain a clear understanding of how to easily implement the nuanced self care that works best for you. The result is a more comfortable pre-menstrual time and a more easeful cycle.
3. Do a yoni steam two to three times per month
You should do your yoni steam approximately 7 days before your menstruation begins, and another within the next couple of days (2 in the week before your period begins). The Vibrant Souls Devi Steam blend will help your uterus to tone and clean itself in such a way that it will not have to work as hard to release the material, thereby causing less pain. Do not be surprised if, when your period does come, it is heavier and darker. This is temporary and will relieve you from future pain and lessen your future flow. You may also consider yoni steaming the week immediately after your period ends, to ensure that all residual material is cleansed from your uterus. To learn more about yoni steaming download the PDF "How to Yoni Steam" Ritual Guide.
4. Increase calcium and magnesium intake
Magnesium helps to ease headaches, sugar cravings, low blood sugar and dizziness associated with PMS. Calcium helps to reduce premenstrual fatigue, cravings, and depression. It is essential that these two minerals are paired, as magnesium supplies the mechanism by which calcium levels are moderated in your cells. One great way to get these key nutrients into your diet is to drink at least 3 cups of a mineral rich women's reproductive support tea every day throughout the month, and especially in the 10 days before your menstrual cycle begins. The Vibrant Souls Vibrant Woman Tonic is specially formulated to prevent menstrual cramps, tone the system, and relieve uterine congestion. Other sources of calcium and magnesium are lentils, seaweed, sesame seeds, nuts, avocado, coconut, dill and leafy green vegetables. You can also absorb significant amounts of magnesium in through the pores of your skin when you take a bath with magnesium bath salts.
5. Have regular orgasms!
Orgasms cause a release of healthy hormones and cause your uterus to contract, which can help your body detoxify and relax. Your entire reproductive system will stay healthy and toned, plus its great stress relief and helps you sleep, which supports your overall well being. So have at it, sister! Learn how to have intense, prolonged, whole-body orgasms, reach your true sexual potential, and discover a more blissful and fulfilling way of living in your body with the wisdom discovered in the book The Multi-Orgasmic Woman.
6. Go outside and play!
Studies show that exercising 3 - 4 times per week, and getting enough Vitamin D (which comes from the sun!) can help reduce menstrual cramps. Vitamin D is also essential for the absorption of calcium and magnesium. So find a sunny place to do some yoga, walk to run. You'll feel great, and you'll look great too!
7. Treat yourself to a monthly hot/cold sitz bath.
Alternating hot and cold sitz baths has been used for centuries to clear pelvic congestion and restore tone to the pelvic region. It's a great monthly ritual that is both invigorating and excellent for keeping the reproductive system healthy. To do the sitz bath, set up two basins of water: one with very cold water, and the other with a very warm sitz bath herbal infusion (include comfrey, chamomile and uva ursi). Lower your bottom into the warm basin and rest comfortably for 5 minutes. Then quickly move to immerse your bottom in the basin of cold water, sitting for 3-4 minutes. Alternate immersions for another 4 rotations.
8. Treat menstrual cramps naturally
If, after you've taken great care to incorporate these steps into your routine, you still experience menstrual cramps during your cycle, try these tried and true remedies:
Drink a ½ cup of Vibrant Souls Moon Bliss Cramp Relieving Tonic every 15 minutes until cramps subside. Be sure to steep this special herbal infusion for 20 minutes before drinking in order to draw the properties out of the cramp bark.
Don’t eat or drink anything cold, as cold foods can exacerbate cramps.
Alternate hot and cold footbaths to improve circulation at the onset of menstrual cycle.
Place a ginger poultice over your womb.
Sierra Brashear, MA is a Certified Ayurvedic Practitioner, DONA-trained doula, herbal alchemist, wellness educator and founder of Vibrant Souls yoni steams. Inspired by the rhythms and elements of nature, Sierra weaves her knowledge of Ayurveda into the products and lifestyle design programs she offers. She invites you to join her 16-week program, The Art of Fertility | Journey to Conception — to clear toxins and nourish your mind and body in preparation for an easeful conception and healthy pregnancy. Sierra is also co-founder of Cultivate Balance and Moon Bath, and lives in Boulder, Colorado.
These are recommendations based on extensive research & experience. Please note that this is not medical advice. Always consult a medical professional if you have any questions about how these recommendations might affect you. Do not follow these recommendations if you think you might be pregnant.