You know that exercise can be a factor in losing your period. But you feel as though you really don’t run or work out enough for it to be an issue for you. What’s going on?

Dr. Jennifer Gaudiani talks about assessing our own bodies and avoiding the comparison trap.


Read the transcript

[Tina]  I’m not a professional or even a competitive runner. Surely this doesn’t apply to me; I don’t train enough for my period to be missing because of that. So why is my period missing? 

[Jen]  It turns out that your wonderful body does not care whether you are running for medals or whether you are running for a weekend activity. It just assesses whether your unique body is getting enough fuel for what it’s being asked to do. So it cannot compare you to your neighbor, or your roommate, or your classmate, or your workmate who seems to be blithely doing all this and not eating that. All it’s assessing is you. It’s there for you. 

So if your unique body is giving you the physical signs that you’re not fueling enough compared with what you’re doing, we just have to believe it. And we can’t compare it to somebody else. It can be really easy in our era of comparison to say, “Well, this person says this is how they’re training and fueling and they seem to be fine; why do I seem to have a problem? Why do I have to do differently?” As we are all different and all we can say is, we’ve got to listen to the signals our own body is giving us. 

 [Tina] Thank you so much for that.

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Recovering from RED-S is hard. It’s even harder if you’re working through it alone. Even if you have professional support, they’re not available 24-7, and that can lead to going down search engine rabbit holes that have the potential to derail everything.

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more about Dr G:

Dr. Jennifer Gaudiani, CEDS-S, FAED, is an internist who specializes in eating disorders. She practices from a deeply anti-diet, weight-inclusive perspective and partners with therapists and dietitians around the country to ameliorate medical roadblocks in patients’ recovery journeys. Her book, “Sick Enough: A Guide to the Medical Complications of Eating Disorders,” is for patients, families, and practitioners. You can find Jen at

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