Does the Moon Affect Women’s Menstrual Cycle?

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Does the Moon Affect Women’s Menstrual Cycle?

For centuries, humans have been fascinated by the moon and its influence on various aspects of our lives. One area where this influence has long been debated is the connection between lunar phases and women’s menstrual cycles. While some believe that the moon’s pull can impact the timing and intensity of menstruation, others remain skeptical. In this article, we will explore the scientific evidence behind this controversial claim and shed light on the mysterious relationship between the moon and women’s menstrual cycles.

The Moon’s Phases and Menstruation

Before delving into the science, it’s important to understand the connection that has been suggested between the moon’s phases and menstrual cycles. The idea is based on the premise that, like the moon, women’s bodies operate on a monthly cycle. Just as the moon goes through a 29.5-day cycle from new moon to full moon and back again, women commonly experience a similar length menstrual cycle.

Proponents of this theory argue that since the moon influences the tides and menstrual blood flow shares some similarities with water movements, it could also affect the menstrual cycle. According to this belief, the moon’s gravitational pull during specific lunar phases may either accelerate or delay the onset of menstruation.

The Scientific Evidence

While the idea of the moon impacting women’s menstrual cycles may sound intriguing, the scientific evidence supporting this claim is limited and often contradictory. Numerous studies have attempted to establish a link between lunar phases and menstruation but have produced mixed results.

One well-known study published in the American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology in 1980 analyzed the menstrual cycles of 305 women and found no significant correlation with lunar phases. Similarly, a review conducted by researchers from the University of Sydney in 1996 analyzed 22 studies on the topic and concluded that there was no scientific basis for the proposed relationship between the moon and menstruation.

However, not all studies have dismissed the moon’s potential impact on menstrual cycles. A smaller study published in the journal Acta Obstetricia et Gynecologica Scandinavica in 2006 found a weak but statistically significant correlation between the onset of menstruation and the moon’s phases. Nevertheless, the researchers acknowledged the need for further investigation to confirm these findings.

The Influence of Lunar Phases on Sleep and Light Exposure

While the direct influence of the moon on menstrual cycles remains uncertain, researchers have explored other potential indirect mechanisms that could play a role. Two factors that have garnered attention in recent years are sleep patterns and light exposure.

Studies have shown that lunar phases can affect sleep patterns, with some individuals experiencing more disrupted sleep during the full moon. Changes in sleep patterns can, in turn, influence hormone levels and the stability of the menstrual cycle.

Additionally, lunar phases can also impact overall light exposure, especially during the nighttime. The amount of ambient light can have an effect on a woman’s circadian rhythm and, consequently, her menstrual cycle. Disruptions in the normal light-dark cycle may affect the regularity of hormone secretion, potentially influencing the timing of ovulation and menstruation.


While the idea that the moon affects women’s menstrual cycles continues to captivate many, the scientific evidence supporting this notion remains inconclusive. Multiple studies have failed to establish a significant correlation between lunar phases and menstrual timing. However, researchers are beginning to explore other potential indirect mechanisms, such as sleep patterns and light exposure, which could influence the menstrual cycle and may be affected by lunar cycles.

Ultimately, more well-designed studies are needed to settle the debate once and for all. Until then, the connection between the moon and women’s menstrual cycles remains a fascinating but unproven hypothesis.

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Does the Moon Affect Women’s Menstrual Cycle?