Author(s): Brown SG, Morrison LA, Calibuso MJ, Christiansen TM
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Abstract Patterns of eating, exercise, sleep, and health were investigated across 180 menstrual cycles of 89 women who engaged in sex with a male (n = 45; cycles = 85), a female (n = 21; cycles = 37), or abstained from sex (n = 33; cycles = 58) from January 2005 to December 2007 (10 contributed to 2 groups). Cycles were divided into 5 phases based on their luteinizing hormone surges. Daily questionnaires and saliva for IgA and cortisol analyses were obtained. Women indicated that they ate more (p < .008) and did not sleep as well (p = .02) during their luteal and premenstrual phases. Participants were less likely to experience food cravings and did not satisfy their cravings when they were ovulatory (p < .001). Additionally, a greater proportion of lesbians skipped breakfast (p = .01) and exercised less than heterosexuals (p = .05). Sexually active women had lower cortisol and IgA levels than abstinent women (p = .02). Our study discovered, and confirmed, systematic differences in eating, sleeping, and health patterns across women's menstrual cycles.
This article was published in Women Health
and referenced in Journal of Sports Medicine & Doping Studies