Do Women Burn More Calories During Their Period?

Updated on September 09, 2008
M.R. asks from Gilbert, AZ
8 answers

This is a silly question but I have tried doing a little research online and haven't found much info. Maybe someone out there can shed a little light on this subject for me......I read somewhere that women burn an extra 500 calories a day while on their period. I wasn't sure how accurate this was. I have never heard this before and wondered if anyone knew if this was actually true or not? It sure would make having your period a little more tolerable!

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answers from Los Angeles on

I've never heard of that. I have to comment on what Michelle said one the first post- I'm breastfeeding now and have seen several times that it's 300-500 extra calories for that.

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answers from Flagstaff on

I've never heard of this...I do know that your metabolism goes down as your age goes up.
I'd also guess that most of us have to slow down during or cycles so I'm not sure how we'd burn more calories...
I know during my cycle I feel extremely low energy...



answers from Albuquerque on

I can't say that I know for certain, but I do find it kind of hard to believe that you burn any additional calories just because you are having your period. Your body isn't working any harder while you are menstruating, you are just shedding blood and epithelial cells that are already present in your uterus. This does not require any expenditure of energy, it is purely hormonal.



answers from Las Cruces on

All I know is that during pregnancy you should consume an extra 300 calories per day, and breastfeeding it's an extra 500-800 calories per day. Breastfeeding was much more involved for me than my period is, so 500 sounds like too much, but who knows. If it is true I might not dread getting my period so much!



answers from Phoenix on

I have been working out with a trainer since January and that certainly has never come up. Heck I would give up cardio during that week if that's the case, LOL. I will ask him specifically but I have never heard that myself. HMM



answers from Albuquerque on

M. - I have heard the same thing from my gyno who told me it is normal to feel so hungry during my period - she was telling me this in relation to a side effect of the birth control that I am on. I've never done any research, but I can relate. She also told me that your body craves more protein due to blood loss, because protein rich foods are also usually rich in iron which is another thing you suffer from during menstration. If you are concerned about eating too much, I started taking a really good iron pill (not something I can do on a regular basis because it messes up my bowels) during the week of my period and it seemed to help curb the cravings. I also eat lots of lean cuts of red meat and broccoli - my family loves this time of the month!!!
Good luck to you, and if you do some further research, share!



answers from Phoenix on

From what I hear, yes, we burn more calories during our period. Check out She talks about our need for extra calories at that time of month in her book.



answers from Tucson on

I dunno how true it is or not but every time I'm on my period I weigh more during, and then when its gone I'll shed 2 or 3 lbs. Not to mention my breast swell up and get hard during the entire time.

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