Do menstrual cycles synchronise?

There is no simple answer to this question. The suggestion that menstrual cycles synchronise was first published in 1971by Martha McClintock. Since then, several studies have been conducted to replicate the findings, with some failingand some succeeding3  to do so. According to a 2017 pilot studyconducted by a period-tracking app company, cycles are actually less likely to sync as time progresses. Mathematical analyses have suggested that overlap of menstrual cycles is just a case of statistical probability.

To learn more, read this 2017 articleby Oxford associate professor Alexandra Alvergnes.

  1. McClintock, M. (1971). Menstrual Synchrony and Suppression. Nature, 229.
  2. Ziomkiewicz, A. (2006). Menstrual Synchrony: Fact or Artifact? Human Nature, 17(4), pp. 419-432.
  3. Weller, A. & Weller, L. (May, 1993). Menstrual synchrony between mothers and daughters and between roommates. Physiology & Behavior, 53 (5), pp. 943-949.
  4. Clue Period Tracker (2016). Do menstrual cycles sync? Unlikely, finds Clue data.
  5. Alvergne, A. (July 14, 2016). Do women’s periods really synch when they spend time together? The Conversation.
Categories: Facts

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