Do you experience your personal beauty best at a certain time of the month—the inexplicable few days when your skin glows, your hair looks lustrous, and you feel sexy and amazing? Turns out there's a science behind this concept, and Louisville, Kentucky-based obstetrician, gynecologist, and author Rebecca Booth, M.D., calls it The Venus Theory. "Mother nature uses our hormones as tools to help accomplish her reproductive goals, and we all feel the beautiful benefits a couple of days out of the month" says Dr. Booth.
The female menstrual cycle is dramatically different every day, but you've been programmed to feel the most biologically beautiful during your Venus Week, the pre-ovulatory phase when estrogen and testosterone hit their monthly highs. Day 1 of your cycle starts the first time you observe bright red blood, and your Venus Week usually kicks in around day 13, when hormone levels are elevated. What kind of positive effects does your Venus Week bring? Brighter skin, reduced food cravings, and an overall happier mood—you even look more attractive to the opposite sex! Some Beauties claim to feel the Venusian effects as early as day three, when hormone levels gradually begin to rise.
"Biologically, your body wants a baby, so it releases high doses of estrogen and testosterone before you ovulate to make yourself more attractive to a potential mate," explains Dr. Booth. "After those hormonally high days, your body then releases progesterone after you ovulate in anticipation for a baby—a hormone that really only effects pregnant women." But after your body realizes that it's not pregnant, the dreaded PMS kicks in.
Unfortunately, Mother Nature has a higher plan, and the body only has a couple of days to bask in its hormonal beauty. Venus Week may only occur one time a month, but Dr. Booth recommends these solutions to keep the glow going 24-7.
"Estrogen-rich plant proteins help offset the hormonal lows of your cycle," says Dr. Booth. "The reproductive part of a plant is rich in estrogen—found in seeds, nuts, tubors, and legumes such as chickpeas and lentils." She also suggests some sweet alternatives. "Eat healthy, flavonoid-rich berries such as raspberries, blackberries, and blueberries, and have some dark chocolate every day for your polyphenol fix!" For mood stabilization, Dr. Booth recommends omega-3, vitamin D, vitamin C, and calcium supplements. Exercise and meditation will also help to elevate chemical neurotransmitters in the body.
Natural estrogen activates the production of hyaluronic acid, collagen, and elastin in your skin when it encounters the hormone receptors built into your dermis. When estrogen naturally declines from age, facial skin gradually loses its supple texture and firmness. To counteract this loss, new skin care technology is formulated with phyto-estrogens derived from plant proteins to mimic the natural estrogen present on our skin. When applied topically through a moisturizer or serum, these tiny phyto-estrogens attach themselves to those large hormone receptors, reducing pore size and boosting collagen production in aging skin. Since estrogen also hinders acne, phyto-estrogens can be helpful for all ages. And while there's been recent controversy about hormone over-exposure, Dr. Booth believes there's a general misunderstanding about estrogen in food and cosmetics. "Topical plant estrogens do not affect the blood stream at all, so there's no risk," she urges. So whether you welcome Mother Nature’s beauty high naturally or supplement your daily dose of estrogen, use this knowledge to embrace the sexiest week of your month.
Dr. Rebecca Booth is one of Louisville, Kentucky's most cutting edge doctors, the author of The Venus Week: Discover the Powerful Secret of Your Cycle...At Any Age, and Co-founder of VENeffect anti-aging skin care. Recognized as a leader in women's health and hormonal wellness, Dr. Booth has made appearances on The Today Show and major media. She is a fellow in the American College of Obstetricians & Gynecologists, the American Society for Reproductive Medicine, and the International Society for Clinical Densitometry, among others.