Apana Vayu is one of the vata vayu’s or “winds” located in the pelvic cavity and colon. It has a natural downward and outward movement. Apana is often seen as the seat of health. If Apana Vayu is weak, we can experience a lack of sex drive, difficulty conceiving and premature orgasm. Having healthy flowing Apana Vayu is key as It governs menstruation, labour, orgasms and excretion. Suppose there is obstruction or vitiation of Apana Vayu. In that case, it can turn retrograde, meaning it reverses direction to move up inside the body, leading to constipation, gas, bloating, painful sex, ovulation and periods.
Apana Vayu stimulates menstruation and directs the natural flow of menstrual blood. Menstruation is the body’s way of monthly cleansing. During Pancha Karma, no treatments occur during menstruation to not disrupt the subtle energies at play.
When we use tampons and moon cups, we are obstructing the natural flow of Apana Vayu.
Moon cups are a popular alternative to tampons because they are reusable. If you do not use organic tampons, you are more than likely putting pesticides and all sorts of harmful chemicals inside the body. These chemicals include dioxins from the bleaching process, which, although low, after a lifetime of use, your risk of disease increases as dioxins are a known human carcinogen. Fragranced tampons and pads can raise women’s exposure to phthalates, a known endocrine disruptor linked to developmental issues and low IQ. The vaginal mucosa absorbs tampon chemicals, and from there, can pass almost directly into your bloodstream.
If we have a weak pelvic floor, using moon cups can pull weakened muscles when we take them out, causing a prolapse, so it’s vital to remove them properly by squeezing them and releasing the suction first before gently pulling them out. See HERE for instructions on how to remove your moon cup safely.
According to Ayurveda, using pads or sanitary towels is the best form of period protection because you allow Apana Vayu to do its job and allow the free flow of menstrual blood out of the body naturally without restriction. Using single-use pads is like using single-use plastics. On average, a woman uses between 11,000 disposable sanitary products in a lifetime. Period panties and reusable pads are a great alternative to reducing waste and keeping unwanted chemicals out of the body. You can even get your period panties for local high street shops like M&S and Sainbury’s Tu!
Ecco Femme are a social enterprise based in Auroville, India, that makes washable cloth pads and provides menstrual health education. Your purchases & donations make cloth pads available to girls in need across India while providing a dignified livelihood to women who stitch the pads – It’s a Win-Win!!