“It’s a lot, and that’s coming from me, a person who takes 500 different, obscure vitamins every morning,” said Ariana Cleo, a 26-year-old founder of a wellness public relations firm.
A few years ago, Ms. Cleo took a fertility test and was told by a doctor that she had diminished ovarian reserves. She is now using Ms. Vitti’s period tracking app to monitor her hormones while also eating more food — specifically more carbs and protein — which is all in line with the Flo Protocol. When she feels the need to rest, she is trying to honor that, instead of pushing through a SoulCycle class like she would have in the past. “Alisa’s teachings are all about tapping into our feminine energy — being intuitive, compassionate and empathetic towards our bodies — and resisting the masculine drive to succeed at all costs and just go, go, go,” she said.
There are some who have serious reservations about the approach. Dr. Jennifer Conti, an adjunct clinical professor at Stanford University School of Medicine, wrote in an email that the fixation on so-called hormone imbalances may be “on-trend,” but “in reality, hormones are necessary, fluctuating chemicals our body needs for a variety of everyday functions.”
Women who have a condition like PCOS, she said, should “talk with their gynecologist about creating a shared decision-making goal for management.”
Still, many women feel supported by Ms. Vitti’s approach. After Nicole Gulotta, 37, of Raleigh, N.C., struggled to get pregnant and then suffered a miscarriage in 2013, she followed the Flo Protocol for a year. She became pregnant and gave birth to a boy in October 2015.
To her, there was a clear connection. “The program helped me uncover the root cause of my symptoms and also release some emotional blockages that were holding me back,” Ms. Gulotta said.
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