Researchers working under the direction of Dr. Sarah Romans of the University of Otago in New Zealand asserted that the correlation between an impending menstrual cycle and symptoms such as mood swings is far more tenuous than previously stated, according to Time Health & Family.So, what is everyone supposed to conclude, that women behave like irritable grizzly bears whose cubs have been stolen simply because they get off on it? I understand that Ms Romans would like to unconstrain women's activities, which is a reasonable goal, but this would appear to be a ludicrously counterproductive means of going about it. I mean, surely a scientist is capable of understanding that failing to find evidence of the explanatory cause does not eliminate the observed behavior.
“The human menstrual cycle … has historically been the focus of myth and misinformation, leading to ideas that constrain women’s activities,” authors of the study wrote. “We wished to examine one pervasive idea, that the [menstrual cycle] is a cause of negative mood, by studying the scientific literature as a whole. We briefly reviewed the history of the idea of premenstrual syndrome and undertook a systematic review of quality studies.”
In short, 85 percent of the studies did not observe what is classically known as PMS, and just over half off the studies found menstruation and mood to be related at all.... “Taken together, these studies failed to provide clear evidence in support of the existence of a specific premenstrual negative mood syndrome in the general population,” the study concluded, according to its abstract summary in Gender Medicine. “This puzzlingly widespread belief needs challenging, as it perpetuates negative concepts linking female reproduction with negative emotionality.”
Given the expressed motivations of the researchers, color me very dubious on this one. Especially since a relationship found in over half the studies would tend to be evidence in support of the existence of such a relationship.