1 December 2020 - Anouk Schepers | If you've seen an acupuncturist for menstrual issues, you've probably been asked all kinds of questions about your menstrual blood. Do you have heavy periods, what color is your blood and do you have blood clots?

The more we know, the better we can understand your body and menstrual cycle. The color of the blood is not a gynecological diagnosis. It gives the acupuncturist instructions about the energy balance in your body and how we can restore this balance in case of menstrual complaints.

Rich red
The ideal color is rich red. The texture should be about the same as bleeding from a wound. It does not clot and is not watery or sticky. It is normal to see some small pea-sized blood clots as well, because you are also shedding your endometrium lining.

Light red / pink
Pale red or pink blood that is very thin and watery is a sign of Chinese medicine that the energy of the spleen is not optimal. If the blood is this color, you often lose less blood. This is often accompanied by a lack of appetite or difficult digestion or absorption of the nutrients, tiredness and a feeling cold in your body. Diarrhea is also a complaint that belongs in this list.

Bright red
If your menstrual blood is bright red, your body temperature can affect the quality of the blood. If your basal body temperature is above 36.6 ° C at the beginning of your cycle, your blood is usually clearer than normal. This may be associated with thirst, sore throat, yellow vaginal discharge, or pelvic pain. A higher body temperature can also interrupt the timing of ovulation, which negatively affects your fertility.

Dark red
Conversely, if your basal body temperature is too low, your menstrual blood may turn a darker red. Low body temperatures can cause slowness of blood circulation in the uterus and uterine contraction, which can cause cramps or increased blood clots. This may also be due to the stagnation of Qi in the liver, which stagnates the smooth flow of Qi. In such cases, you can get symptoms such as PMS, breast tenderness, irritability and can easily get stressed.

Purple or brown
This color gives the acupuncturist an indication that energy or blood is standing still. In addition to the dark color, you can also get larger clots in your menstrual blood. This color of the blood is often accompanied by menstrual complaints: a painful and heavy menstruation, many cramps in the lower abdomen or back pain. We often see this color in women with a history of fibroids and endometriosis. Women with very dark menstrual blood may have fertility problems and have difficulties to become pregnant.

Bright red / orange
Bright red blood that tends to orange, often thicker and slimy, indicates that there is heat in your system. This could be an infection. You may also notice that the blood smells sharp, you are feverish, or in pain. Other symptoms with this color of blood that also ring an alarm bell are: excessive thirst, dry lips, sores around the mouth or sudden nosebleeds. Make sure you take care of yourself when you see that your blood is this color.