When we think about our wellbeing, there’s a few factors that tend to come to mind—including our physical health, diet, fitness regime, sleep and mental health. But there’s one super important aspect of our health that most of us don’t give much thought to. Well, that is, until it surprises us right when we’re about to go to the beach or give an important presentation at work! I am, of course, talking about our menstrual cycles.
As annoying as periods are, they’re a great window into our overall health. Everything from their colour to the length, heaviness and frequency can give us signs as to what’s going on in your body. And if you don’t get them at all, that gives you an important insight into your health, too.
So, it was only a matter of time before wearable fitness companies added period-tracking to their repertoire. And it seems that Fitbit are the first to the party, as the health-tracking giants have just announced that this a feature in their latest device, the Fitbit Versa.
The new feature has come out of necessity, as a Fitbit survey revealed that 70% of women didn’t know how long an average cycle is and 80% didn’t know there were multiple phases in a cycle. They’ve also said that female health tracking was one of the most-requested features on their community boards.
So, how exactly does it work? Don’t worry, you’re not going to get a screeching alarm that says “Your period is here!!” when you’re on the bus or at work. The latest technology allows you to log your cycle dates, record symptoms and compare previous periods. Of course, there are already period tracker apps that allow you to do all that. In fact, the research from Fitbit shows that 24% of women are already tracking their menstrual cycle.
But what sets this device apart is the fact that you can combine it with the rest of your health and fitness data. For example, perhaps it being ‘that’ time of the month could explain why you were barely able to move off the couch all Sunday, or why your gym performance wasn’t as strong as usual.
Not only does tracking your period allow you to detect any changes in your menstrual cycle (which can be an early warning sign of uterine fibroids, ovarian cysts, other hormonal issues and even cervical cancer), it allows you to go to your doc armed with useful insights about your cycle. You’ll be their new favourite patient!
While the period-tracking feature is built-in on the new Fitbit Versa, it’s also now available on-device for Fitbit Ionic users, too, and to all Fitbit app users starting this month. The Fitbit Versa is now available from Fitbit.com at $299.95 and will be in store from April.