What your basal body temps are telling you


Your temperature dipped one day and you can’t figure out why. Or maybe your temperature bounces up and down and it’s hard to figure out when (or if) you ovulate. Join Rianna Poskin and I as we talk about charting from a Traditional Chinese Medicine point of view!

I had so much fun with this one – I almost forgot I was the one doing the interviewing as I listened to her share insight about what was probably happening in one woman’s cycle. Our charts are really interesting!

Charting from a TCM view

About Rianna

Rianna Poskin is a Mom of 3, an Entrepreneur, Lover of the Outdoors/Exercise/Nutrition, and Servicing others. Her mission is to make you the best by bringing you to your full potential in Body, Mind and Spirit!

Rianna and her husband dealt with Fertility issues, including miscarriages, which is why she is so passionate in helping others achieve their family dreams and stay healthy!

Rianna worked as a TCM practitioner focusing on Women’s Health and Fertility until having children.  Now she continues her work online consulting while being at home with her children.

Education: Master’s in Business (MSBA), Bachelor’s in Science (BSAT), Certifications in Acupuncture, Herbal Medicine, and Body Mind Nutrition.

Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist (CSCS)

Find her at RiannaPoskin.com (where you can sign up to get her free ebook and menu), on Twitter: @riannaposkin and Facebook: facebook.com/backtobasicsblogger

Top fertility tip

It’s so simple… breathing.

We tend to be shallow breathers and we don’t allow for that oxygen to go to the right places and feel our bodies in the right way. We need that to survive and if we’re not nourishing ourselves in that way everything else we’re doing will have a harder time bringing about good health.

Charting resources

Fertility Friend – Fertility charting with Fertility Friend thus involves observing and recording your fertility signs so that you can easily see your daily fertility status and identify your most fertile time.

Lady Comp Baby – If you would like to become pregnant without stress and avoid undergoing complex procedures, the intelligent fertility monitor of Valley-Electronics is for you.

iBasal – The ibasal is much more than just a basal thermometer – it’s an FDA-cleared fertility monitor that is able to calculate your precise ovulation date and peak fertile days based on your daily temperatures and a variety of other fertility indicators.

FairHaven Health – supplements, basal thermometers, and test strips among other items.

Show notes

Not an exact transcription, so check out the video for the entire conversation, but here are some of the main points from our talk!

How does TCM and charting go hand in hand?

So many women get hung up on every little temperature fluctuation and trying to figure out what each variable means. This becomes a constant stress int every day charting because it’s a constant reminder that the goal you’re reaching for has not yet been obtained.

My approach is to look at the whole thing together and create a strategy to implement without causing excess stress. You don’t want to bombard yourself on a regular basis with those minute details, it’ll drive you crazy!

Practice charting…but do it and then let it go!

Rianna goes in-depth into a specific chart – make sure you what the video for this!

Tidbits during the chart review:

  • Ideal follicular phase and luteal phase is about 12-14 days for each.
  • Checking out the tongue! By looking at the tongue you can see which organs may be having problems. This tongue was swollen has a white coating and red tip.
  • The symptoms listed in the charts match what the tongue and the temperature variations all point to the same thing.
  • 5 phases in Chinese medicine – all five are important to look at
    1. follicular
    2. ovulation
    3. luteal
    4. premenstrual
    5. menstruation
  • We can actually change our dietary and lifestyle habits during each phase to optimize each phase. Some recommendations are shown on-screen just before minute 10! (supplements , dietary changes and acupressure points)

Seriously – watch the video here as Rianna really gets into every detail of the basal body charts!

  • Alkalizing every day is important. (helps you detox without doing a full-blown cleanse)
    • 1/2 cup of juice with filtered water and a pinch of Himalayan salt first thing in the morning.
    • 15 minutes of quiet meditation
    • Get in your supplements! (Rianna gives her recommendations here)
    • Throughout the day, make sure you drink alkaline water (just a pinch of Himalayan salt. Fruit between meals will help to alkalize the body. Foods high in zinc are also important! (menu shown in video 18:00)
    • Possible supplementation for anyone trying to get pregnant and for advanced maternal age recommendations given (19:00)
  • Analyze your charts over a few months.
  • Take three months of dietary and lifestyle changes before conceiving as the egg has a 100 day maturation cycle.

The ocean of our fertility does not dry up, it just becomes still. And with help, it can flow once more.

– Randine Lewis, author of The Infertility Cure

  • Femoral massage for bringing blood flow to the ovaries. (shown later in the video at 32:00)
  • If you have a short luteal phase it will be difficult to get pregnant.
  • Low temperatures you might want to get your thyroid checked out. In TCM it’s connected to a “low spleen energy”.

What are some of the biggest issues you find with women’s charts?

Statistically…there’s a variation of errors. Consistency is hard and there are many variables that can throw temps off slightly, so don’t get consumed about it.

Stress = cortisol production = acidifying the body.

So make sure you chart, but don’t get so wrapped up in it! If you do give up on taking temperature, just don’t give up on writing down your signs and symptoms as they are really important for a holistic practitioner to help you figure out what is going on in each part of your cycle.

Those signs and symptoms as well as the emotions can pin point which organ needs focus.

We also had a great conversation about how you have to be comfortable with your practitioner! (34:00)

what your basal body temps are telling you

Donielle Baker

Donielle Baker

owner and editor of Natural Fertility and Wellness at Natural Fertility and Wellness
I believe women can learn how to heal their bodies & balance their hormones through natural methods. An advocate for natural health, I have a passion for nourishing/real food nutrition and natural living. My personal background includes both infertility and miscarriage and I started Natural Fertility and Wellness in 2008 in order to share all of the information I found helpful in my journey to heal from PCOS and overcome infertility.
Donielle Baker
Donielle Baker
Donielle Baker
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  1. Hillary

    I am intrigued by Rianna’s analysis of a tongue! I have had a geographic tongue for years. It is sensitive to acidic foods such as pineapple. What does TCM have to say about that being a possible indicator of deeper health issues I may have? Thank you!

  2. Renae Parsons

    Hi Rianna,

    How often should acupuncture be done?

    • Rianna Poskin

      Hello! Thanks for commenting and looking further into how TCM works! Here’s an example of what flavours mean to our body:Sour flavour can calm the body (liver/gallbladder). Bitter flavour can clear heat(heart/small intestine). Sweet flavour can tonify the body(spleen/stomach). Spicy flavour can expel wind and cold from the body(lung/large intestine). Salty flavour can help the body to dissolve stagnation(kidney/bladder). These would be flavours that would help the associated organ…if there is an aversion to a flavour or type of food then it can mean that the body won’t process it well, or it needs to work too hard to process it. Therefore it gives rise to a dislike to that particular flavour or food. The underlying issue can be investigated through a pulse analysis, thorough questioning, and more tongue evaluation. The signs and symptoms are then put together to determine the root cause of the imbalances. Treatments, dietary shifts, and lifestyle changes can all be implemented to then restore balance. As for how often acupuncture should be done…In practice I always talked it through with my clients to see what was realistic. If you’re implementing dietary, supplemental and herbal changes acupuncture may not have to be done as often. Within a 3 month period I’d recommend doing as much as possible if possible! 2 times per week for the first month, re-evaluate symptoms, then move to 1 x per week, eventually down to biweekly appointments. Progress should be happening. It can take some time but you should be moving in the right direction! If you can go more I’d recommend more. I’d recommend not having treatments done during menses unless signs and symptoms are really bad. I hope that helps! More implementations are better than none…so do what you can!

  3. Elie

    Hi Rianna and Donielle thanks for the article!
    I’d like to ask you about your opinion about the electronic devices and apps to chart fertility.
    I’ve been doing research and came to these two choises: daysy (https://www.usa.daysy.me/) and crearblue( sorry, can’t find the link right now) they work in different ways, but promise to make charting very easy.
    It would be helpful to hear your thought in choosing the right one because they are a little expensive.
    Thank you

    • Donielle Baker

      I haven’t used either of those as of yet (but have been considering Daysy myself). The only “smarter” thermometer I’ve used is the iBasal, which is better for the budget but not as high tech.

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