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Fertility Awereness

Understand your body and your fertility , Be empowered by recognizing what is happening in your body through your cycles.

Breastfeeding period can be especially challenging to recognize your body.

Our Fertility Awareness or Natural Family Planning ( NFP) programs are here to help you to achieve or avoid a pregnancy with the Marquette Method.

What does Fertility Awereness or NFP consist of?

Fertility Awareness helps you determine the fertile and infertile periods of your female menstrual cycle. Getting this information can help you get pregnant or avoid pregnancy.
When used as natural contraception, it will be necessary to abstain from sexual intercourse and genital activities during the fertile period of the cycle. 
You will need to develop your creativity to develop non-genital ways of expressing intimacy during fertile times.
Importantly, this information is based on scientific research and can help women better understand their menstrual cycle and make informed decisions about family planning.


There are different methods for monitoring and interpreting natural biological markers of fertility in a woman's body:

  • CALENDAR METHOD: The oldest of the methods or sometimes called Calendar rhythm or just rhythm. This method is based on knowing the length of the past 6-12 menstrual cycles and using a simple mathematical formula to determine the beginning and end of fertility. 

  • BASAL BODY TEMPERATURE or more commonly called BBT : is based on tracking the daily waking temperatures of the woman throughout the cycle. After a woman ovulates her body temperature heats up 4 to8 tenths of a degree. This is called the temperature shift and is a biological marker for ovulation. BBT is often combined with the calendar method and other natural biological indicators. 

  • OVULATION METHOD: is based only on cervical mucus changes. Cervical mucus is produced as a response to a female hormone called estrogen. The changing pattern of the cervical mucus indicates the beginning, peak and end of the fertile time of a woman’s cycle.

  • SYMPTO_THERMAL METHOD or STM: is based on a combination of BBT and cervical mucus change observation.

  • HORMONAL MONITORING used in the MARQUETTE METHOD: is based on a combination of multiple natural biological indicators and the hormones change detected in the urine.

Representation of the different phases of the menstrual cycle

You should know that together a man and a woman are fertile only 6 days per month: The day of ovulation when an egg is released AND the 5 days before ovulation. The reason that they are fertile 5 days before ovulation is because sperm can live for 3-5 days.  The 6 days of fertility are called the FERTILE WINDOW.


There are three phases in the menstrual cycle, the pre-ovulatory infertile phase, the fertile phase and the post-ovulatory infertile phase.

The pre-ovulatory infertile phase 

The fertile phase 

The post-ovulatory infertile phase 

It begins with the first day of the period.  These days are indicated in RED in the slide. 
There are a variable number of relatively infertile days after the period, shown here in GREEN.

It shown in BLUE, begins about 5 days before ovulation and ends 24 hours after ovulation. 
Recent reproductive research has confirmed that women have a six-day window of fertility during their menstrual cycle, namely, the day of ovulation and the five previous days. Determining the beginning and end of these six days and the peak of fertility is the goal of modern NFP. 

​It shown here in GREEN.  This is the more stable part of the cycle.

variability of the cycles

What is the main difficulty of natural family planning?

As you can see, although there is only a 6 day window of fertility, the days that this fertile window falls can vary from cycle to cycle.


In the three consecutive menstrual cycles on the picture:

The first cycle is 29 days in length, the second 25 days, and the third 34 days in length. 


This illustrates that the day of ovulation and the fertile window can vary from cycle to cycle.  It also shows that the post ovulatory period is the more stable time of the menstrual cycle and that most of the variability occurs before ovulation.  
The post ovulatory period in the above three cycles ranged from 12-14 days, while the pre-ovulatory period was from 11-23 days.

Copie de NFP -- Living With Your Fertility - 2020 (1) (1) Including Space Age NFP slides.p

Anatomical reminder of the female reproductive organs

Uterus: the pear shaped organ called the uterus or womb were a baby develops and grows.

The fallopian tubes come off each side of the uterus that serves as a passage for the sperm and egg.

The ovaries are the small almond shaped organs on each side of the uterus that contain all of the women’s egg cells.

The cervix: One of the most important parts of this slide of the female anatomy because this is where the mucus is made that the woman sees and feels to determine when she is fertile or not.

Cervix changes during the menstrual cycle

The cervix is important because it is the passageway into the uterus.  Along the passageway, there are special cells and glands that produce mucus under the influence of female hormones. 
At the time of peak fertility, the cervix is open and a watery type of mucus flows from the opening.  The female hormone estrogen stimulates the cervical cells to produce this watery type of mucus.  Sperm can live in this type of watery mucus from 3-5 days.


After the peak of fertility, the cervical cells produce a thick type of mucus after being stimulated by another female hormone called progesterone.  This mucus forms a plug and closes off the cervix.  At this time sperm are unable to enter into the cervix and uterus.


A woman’s fertility begins when an egg (or ovum) in her ovaries starts to ripen in a small vessel called a follicle. 
The follicle produces the female hormone ESTROGEN that stimulates cells along the opening of her cervix to produce mucus. The mucus at first appears sticky, tacky, and cloudy but progresses to a very watery, stretchy, and slippery consistency around the time of ovulation.

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Ovarian change during the menstrual cycle

Right before ovulation the follicle is stimulated by a female hormone called luteinizing hormone or LH.  LH causes the follicle to release the egg, which event is what we call “ovulation.”  LH also causes the cells of the follicle to (change) and become a corpus luteum, now producing the female hormone PROGESTERONE. Progesterone raises the woman’s body temperature and causes the mucus to dry up at the cervix. 


After ovulation, the egg only lives from 12-24 hours. Therefore, once a woman reaches her peak fertility and ovulates she is at the beginning of the end of her fertile window.


The reason that a woman’s fertility is about 6 days is because the sperm from a man can live in good cervical mucus for 3-5 days. If a couple has intercourse when the egg is ripening and the follicle is stimulating good cervical mucus then the sperm can survive and be around to fertilize the egg 3-5 days later.

Hormonal Changes during the menstrual cycle

Basically with NFP we are directly or indirectly measuring the three hormones: 

  • Estrogen: Rising estrogen levels in the follicle stimulates the production of cervical mucus.

  • LH or luteinizing hormone: , which can be measured in the urine, stimulates ovulation to occur

  • Progesterone: produced in the involuted follicle or corpus luteum, raises the basal body temperature and makes the mucus symptom disappear.

These graphs show where these hormonal changes occur in the woman’s cycle. The cycle begins with day 1 on the left side of the slide. Early in the cycle all the hormone levels are low. As the follicle matures under the influence of FSH or follicle-stimulating hormone, estrogen levels rise. The LH surge occurs 24-48 hours before ovulation. After ovulation, progesterone levels rise and stay up for several days. If the woman is not pregnant, the levels drop and the woman experiences a period. If she is pregnant, the levels stay up until the placenta is developed enough to support the pregnancy.

women's menstrual cycle

How can I help you?

I offer different options for you:

Free Masterclass

  • Video presentation about the different methods of observing cycles to choose the one that suits you

  • Fertility chart to download

Fertility Awareness package 3 MONTHS follow-up : $89

  • Video presentation of the method 

  • Video presentation during breastfeeding

  • Presentation during special situations: perimenopause, post-miscarriage

  • Fertility charts to download 

  • 1X45 minute initial visit  

  • Follow up by email for 2 month

Fertility Awareness FULL PACKAGE
1 YEAR follow-up : $249

  • Video presentation of the method 

  • Video presentation during breastfeeding

  • Presentation during special situations: perimenopause, post-miscarriage

  • Fertility charts to download 

  • 1X60 minute initial visit 

  • 3X 30 minutes follow-up visit at 1 month, 3 months, and 6 months 

  • Learn to recognize your body 

  • Follow up by email for 1 year 

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