Tag Archives: Flo Living

Book Club: Woman Code Pt. 4

We’ve reached the end of our series on WomanCode by Alisa Vitti. If you’re anything like me, you’re feeling wildly inspired and wondering how you can start living in sync with your cycle.

Below, are some ideas for each phase. These are practices or rituals I plan to incorporate in my cycle moving forward. Many of these were pulled straight from the book or were inspired by some of the resources listed in Part 2. Feel free to contribute your own ideas in the comments below! After that, I’ve included a few printables to help us take our cycle syncing from brainstorming phase to practical application. Let’s get started!

Here are some actions and practices I plan to incorporate in my cycle:

Menstrual Phase

Lifestyle –

  • Spend some time with a journal
  • Plan for the month ahead
  • Add an extra hour to night’s sleep (or make time for an afternoon nap)
  • Gentle stretching every morning
  • Short, lazy walks in nature

Professional –

  • Wrap up loose ends
  • Schedule meetings focused on planning
  • Evaluate ongoing projects and determine next steps

Self-Care –

  • Beautiful accessories as adornment and celebration
  • Steer clear of social media and technology in the evenings
  • Cleansing, salty baths
  • Rose: essential oil, incense, quartz, maybe a whole bouquet!

Follicular Phase

Lifestyle – 

  • Tackle a new project in your home
  • RSVP yes to social outings
  • Try something outside your comfort zone
  • See a new movie or check out a new restaurant
  • Take a challenging exercise class

Professional – 

  • Dive into your most mentally challenging assignments
  • Plan brainstorming sessions with colleagues/clients who need your help
  • Start a new project you’ve been putting off

Self-Care – 

  • Restock your cupboards and fridge
  • Buy yourself flowers
  • Change your bed linens
  • Wear something daring
  • Play outside

Ovulatory Phase

Lifestyle – 

  • Attend events in your community
  • Have important conversations with loved ones
  • Go on dates
  • Stick to high impact workouts
  • Explore the great outdoors with a friend

Professional – 

  • Make any big asks
  • Collaborate as much as possible
  • Gather opinions and feedback

Self-Care – 

  • Listen to music and DANCE
  • Moisturize
  • Schedule those beauty appointments (haircuts, etc)
  • Book in for a massage
  • Focus on pleasure

Luteal Phase

Lifestyle – 

  • “Nesting” for upcoming menstruation —
  • ie. make your domestic space comfortable, catch up on laundry and cleaning, grocery shopping/meal prep
  • Schedule some “me time” with a good book or take yourself out for a solo meal or movie
  • Scale back intensity of workouts as the phase progresses

Professional – 

  • Prioritize administrative responsibilities
  • Take time for reporting (finances, operations, etc)
  • Check in with customers and clients

Self-Care – 

  • Detoxifying bath
  • Make time for meditation
  • Pop on a podcast
  • Drink lots of water
  • Bust out some Hygge essentials (this is inner-autumn, afterall)

Now, how can we make sure to implement all these great, cycle-specific ideas? I love the notion of keeping a cycle journal or binder to help plan for the phases. This would be a great habit to get into at the beginning of each cycle — map out the coming days and set intentions. Then, you can check in as you “flow” through each phase. You can also track symptoms, dates, and what resonates with you in each phase so you can continue to do right by your body.

I created a couple printables to do just that. One allows for an overview of the cycle. Use it to jot down an overall intention for the upcoming cycle and to keep track of over-arching needs and clues. The other includes a page for each phase so you can dig a little deeper.

Download them HERE and HERE!

Lots of love,
Beth

P.S. Make sure you SIGN UP to get a copy of the book club’s reading list. There’s an exciting book coming up next week!

If you enjoy my book club, please consider supporting what I do (and helping me keep my book-shelf stocked). Thank you! xoxo ☕

Book Club: Woman Code Pt. 3 (Cycle Syncing Meal Ideas!!)

As promised, today we’re going to dive in to what drew me to WomanCode by Alisa Vitti in the first place — FOOD. The idea that our body benefits from different foods at different parts of our menstrual cycle made a lot of sense to me. Certainly I’ve seen how my body reacts to food differently (in a more negative sense — hi bloating!) throughout the month, but was there a way to use food to nourish my body and give it more of what it needed in each phase?

Vitti breaks down the science behind syncing your cycle with food and I thought it would be fun to explore ways to incorporate this cyclical approach to nutrition in our own lives. On a very surface level, without getting into any discussion of micronutrients and vitamin supplementation, we can start by looking at each phase of the cycle as a season —

Menstrual Phase = Winter
Follicular Phase = Spring
Ovulatory Phase = Summer
Luteal Phase = Fall

The way your eating shifts as the seasons change during a calendar year can be mirrored as you make your way through your cycle. Foods we often associate with a (northern hemisphere) Spring-time meal; like leafy lettuce, eggs, grapefruit, and split peas — are great for the Follicular Phase. While things like squash and sweet potato, brown rice, apples and dates, foods we associate with Autumn, are ingredients we might consider during the Luteal Phase. Thinking of these seasons occurring as you pass through your cycle’s phases is a great place to start when syncing your cycle nutritionally.

To learn more about foods for your cycle, I definitely recommend picking up a copy of WomanCode (if you haven’t already). Vitti goes in-depth on the topic in Chapter 5, and there’s a handy chart on pages 159-60 with all sorts of food ideas for each phase. Using this info as a jumping off point, I decided to “cook up” some meal inspiration for us!

(Note: As I’ve been trying to incorporate these nutritional changes in my own life, my approach has been focused on additions not subtractions. I find this to be the easiest and healthiest way to make lasting changes. I would never advocate for highly prescriptive and restrictive eating plans and, in my experience, completely changing your eating habits can lead to throwing the baby out with the bathwater. Instead, I’m looking for ways to introduce cycle-supporting foods along with the foods I already enjoy/know work well for my body.)  

Ok, let’s get into the phases…

Foods for your Follicular Phase // Inner Spring 

The Follicular Phase comes after menstruation and lasts 7-10 days. At the beginning of this phase your estrogen and progesterone levels are at the lowest and then estrogen begins to steadily rise. Along with that rise in estrogen comes a rise in energy and creativity. You might feel like you want to get out in the world and try new things! So, what foods can help us through this rising trajectory? Lighter foods and energy-building foods. Stuff like green smoothies, salads, foods with active cultures, oats, cashews, sprouts, etc. These foods are also high in Vitamins A & B which help with healthy egg maturation (lookin’ at you upcoming ovulation!).

Follicular Breakfast Ideas:
Oatmeal with cashew milk and cinnamon
Artichoke egg cups
Avocado toast

Follicular Lunch Ideas:
Split pea soup with toast and a plum
Almond butter and sour jelly sandwich with an orange and a hard-boiled egg
Romaine lettuce salad topped with sprouts, avocado and lentils
Serenity Bowl

Follicular Dinner Ideas:
Roast chicken with broccoli and zucchini
Breakfast for dinner — scrambled eggs, chicken sausage links, grapefruit & avocado
Chicken and Barley soup
Marinara sauce served over zucchini noodles

Follicular Snack Ideas:
Brazil nuts
Pickles
Pomegranate seeds

Foods for your Ovulatory Phase // Inner Summer

Ovulation begins around day 14 and may present with some tell-tale signs: cervical mucus, a desire to be more social, and flirtiness (hint, hint).  As you might imagine, your natural energy is at it’s peak in this phase and your mood is pretty stable due to that estrogen rise. As a result, you might want to stick to lighter grains, stay low on carbs, and focus on lighter preparation of vegetables (steamed or raw). You also want to make sure you metabolize and eliminate surplus estrogen and for that you need fiber-rich veggies. Foods like quinoa, nuts, bell peppers, brussel sprouts, strawberries, and salmon are all great during ovulation.

Ovulatory Breakfast Ideas:
Almond croissant
Fruit Salad – cantaloupe, raspberry, and strawberries
Sliced banana topped with almond butter and shredded coconut
Smoothie made with coconut milk and frozen fruit

Ovulatory Lunch Ideas:
Tuna salad over spinach with dry-roasted almonds and raspberries on the side
Lamb Tacos
Spinach salad topped with feta, strawberries, pistachios and fennel, served with balsamic dressing

Ovulatory Dinner Ideas:
Red Lentil Dal over quinoa or red lentil soup
Eggplant Parmesan
Salmon served with asparagus and quinoa

Ovulatory Snack Ideas:
Tortilla chips
Pecan Pie Lara Bars
Chocolate covered strawberries

Foods for your Luteal Phase // Inner Autumn

During the Luteal Phase, progesterone starts to rise after ovulation. You may experience waning energy levels and near the end of the phase many women begin to notice PMS symptoms like mood swings, bloating, acne, and tender breasts. So in this phase you want to focus on foods that promote hormone health in a way that helps alleviate these symptoms. Foods like collard greens, spinach, and kale are rich in magnesium and help reduce bloating. Sweet potatoes, parsnips, and carrots help counteract irritability because they’re rich in B-Complex. And, similar to the ovulatory phase, you want to flush out excess estrogen (which can be the culprit of many PMS symptoms) with fiber; so brown rice, apples, dates, and root vegetables can all help decongest the large intestine.

Luteal Breakfast Ideas:
Roast sweet potato topped with nut butter, banana, and cacao nibs
Pumpkin overnight oats
Chocolate Omelette 

Luteal Lunch Ideas:
Hummus and Veggie plate with pumpkin-zucchini-carrot bread
Turkey sandwich served with an apple and coleslaw
Beef hotdog with carrots/celery and hummus and a peach
Taco mixture (rice, ground beef/beans, veggies)in a collard wrap

Luteal Dinner Ideas:
Beef fried rice
Baked cod with collard greens and sweet potato
Sweet potato, parsnip, and kale soup

Luteal Snack Ideas:
Date balls
Beef sticks
Roasted chickpeas

Foods for your Menstrual Phase // Inner Winter

The menstrual phase begins on day 1 of your cycle aka when you get your period. So, when you’re in the menstrual phase you’re losing blood. Therefore, it’s important to eat foods during menstruation that contain trace minerals and iron as well as help build blood. Essentially, foods for your menstrual phase should be deeply restorative to the blood and kidneys. These can include seaweed, beets, beans, water-rich fruits, and miso. Because your body is involved in an intense elimination process during this phase, you want to ADD nutrients back into your body through your food.

Menstrual Breakfast Ideas:
Kasha cereal
Smoothie made with protein powder and blackberries/blueberries
Bacon, kale & mushroom fry-up
Buckwheat blueberry muffins

Menstrual Lunch Ideas:
Brown rice sushi rolls with seaweed salad and miso soup
Tomato soup with grilled cheese
3-Bean soup and side salad

Menstrual Dinner Ideas:
Vegetarian Chili
Catfish and chips
Crab cakes with warm beet salad
Roast duck with wild rice and cranberry sauce

Menstrual Snack Ideas:
Grapes
Beet juice
Miso soup

What do you think? Will you try out some cycle-supporting foods in your coming phases // inner seasons? Let me know below! 

Check out last week’s post for tons of cycle syncing resources.

Stay tuned for PART 4!!!

If you enjoy my book club, please consider supporting what I do (and helping me keep my book-shelf stocked). Thank you! xoxo ☕

Book Club: Woman Code Pt. 2

Last week, I introduced you to the latest book in our Finding Delight book club — WomanCode: Perfect Your Cycle, Amplify Your Fertility, Supercharge Your Sex Drive, and Become a Power Source by Alisa Vitti. And the ladies in the crowd said, “YAAAS!” (Seriously; reactions from friends, comments on my IG, and replies to my emails all indicated that y’all are super down for this topic!)

Today, I thought I’d share some resources that I’ve found incredibly inspiring and informative on my own “menstrual cycle optimization” journey! If you’ve read WomanCode and want to dig deeper, these links are definitely for you. BUT — they’re also for those of you who HAVEN’T read the book. (My reading list is mile’s long and sometimes a topic interests me long before I have time to crack the spine of a book on the subject, ya dig?)

So, whether you’ve read WomanCode or just popped it on your Amazon wish-list for later, let’s dive in…

Continue Reading:

Books

Articles & Blogs

Continue Watching:

Instagram Accounts

Tuning in for the IG stories of a few “cycle awareness” accounts is a great reminder to take note of your own cycle!

Educational Videos

Continue Listening:

Podcasts

Playlists

Continue Experiencing:

  • Incorporate a new recipe for the different phases of your cycle — FOLLICULAR // MENSTRUAL // OVULATORY // LUTEAL (Note: There’s a specific recipe for each phase but each video also points out other optimal foods for the phase and the info is garnered straight from WomanCode!)  
  • Journal your cycle — HERE are some free resources to help!
  • …and for more experiences, stay tuned to FindingDelight.com. Part 3 of this series will feature a 3-day meal plan for each cycle phase and Part 4 will show you how to make a cycle syncing calendar!

Check out last week’s post HERE. ❤

If you enjoy my book club, please consider supporting what I do (and helping me keep my book-shelf stocked). Thank you! xoxo ☕

Book Club: Woman Code Pt. 1

Hello, fellow bookworms! Today I’m unveiling Book #2 in the Finding Delight Book Club. If you haven’t heard, I’m reading 12 books and sharing about them with you here. I plan to post 4 times for each book. For this book, the posts are going to look something like this — 1) about the book, 2) extended reading/listening/watching, 3) extended eating, and 4) final takeaways. So, let’s dive in for more on WomanCode: Perfect Your Cycle, Amplify Your Fertility, Supercharge Your Sex Drive, and Become a Power Source by Alisa Vitti, HHC.

For the full book list CLICK HERE. I’d love to have you along for the ride!

“Hormones affect everything. Have you ever struggled with acne, oily hair, dandruff, dry skin, cramps, headaches, irritability, exhaustion, constipation, irregular cycles, heavy bleeding, clotting, shedding hair, weight gain, anxiety, insomnia, infertility, lowered sex drive, or bizarre food cravings and felt like your body was just irrational? It’s not; it’s hormonal.” 

Synopsis

As a holistic health counselor, Alisa Vitti helps women. She founded the FLO Living Center in Manhattan because, after experiencing symptoms of polycystic ovarian syndrome for years, she was able to turn her health around through the power of foods and lifestyle changes and thought other women could benefit from what she found to be so life-changing.

Now, in WomanCode, Vitti shares the prescriptive program she used on herself and later with her countless clients. The book explains this proven set of guidelines that has helped thousands of women solve issues related to their cycle, skin, thyroid, mood, and fertility.

The program consists of five steps. Each step is mapped out in easy-to-understand detail so that readers can make changes as soon as they set down the book. Working through the program promises to help you:

  • Live in tune with your cycle
  • Learn how to reduce the impact of harmful ingredients found in your environment, food, and products
  • Lovingly support the function of your blood sugar, adrenals, systems of elimination, and reproductive organs
  • Use the power of your feminine energy

The information in WomanCode gives women a greater understanding of hormone health so they can naturally eliminate period problems, tap into the benefits of living cyclically, and feel great!

***

“Most women know very little about our hormonal biochemistry, and as a result,
we’re making choices about our menstrual care, fertility, and libido
that have long-term negative repercussions.” 

Initial Thoughts

I was first introduced to Alisa Vitti, and the idea of cycle syncing, when she was a guest on a podcast I listen to. The host of the podcast had recently adopted many of the changes outlined in WomanCode and wanted her audience to hear from the source. I’ll be honest, Vitti’s perspective really resonated with me. She discussed the hormonal peaks and valleys that occur throughout women’s cycles. How inherently cyclical we are.  While all the while, society so often asks us to exist in a linear fashion. What would happen if, instead, we tapped into that cyclicality? Or better yet–optimized it?

This optimization is what fascinated me most. Vitti went on to explain how she recommends different foods for each phase of a woman’s cycle. I’ve long believed in the idea of food as medicine. So this made a lot of sense. Why wouldn’t you choose foods that provide the nourishment your need at each point in your cycle? For example, foods rich in B vitamins are great for the Luteal Phase, while seafood and sea-based veggies during menstruation can help remineralize your body with iron and zinc. Sounds pretty interesting, right? And I love anything with the potential for meal plan creation…so her book went straight on my list.

That was several years ago, and in the interim I found (and became low-key obsessed with) another period coach. Claire’s Instagram stories really solidified WomanCode’s place on this book club’s reading list. How? She often shares cycle updates and talks about the different ways she adapts her self-care, business strategies, social life, and exercise to that specific cycle day. Honestly, mind blown! I knew that Vitti’s book would break down the science behind this type of holistic cycle syncing. So, here we are!

As you can probably tell, I’m deeply interested in alternative medicine, nutrition, and women’s health. WomanCode does not disappoint in these areas. I feel like it’s unlocking a whole new approach to my health & wellness and I’m so excited to get stuck in.

Next week, I’ll be sharing some really awesome websites, videos, Instagram accounts and all sorts of other goodies that will hopefully get you fired up about cycle syncing and menstruation! See you then!!

Read this if you’re interested in: Women’s Health, Nutrition, Chinese Medicine, Holistic Healing, Cycle Syncing

Read this if you loved: Moon Time by Lucy Pearce, The Optimized Woman by Miranda Gray, Adore Your Cycle by Claire Baker

Follow Alisa Vitti: Website, Instagram, Pinterest

Keep a lookout for Part 2! It’ll be hitting this site next week.

And don’t forget — if you want the full reading list CLICK HERE. You’ll basically become a card-carrying member of the Finding Delight Book Club! ❤