A Woman's Best Defense

A maverick scientist contends that menstruation protects against infection

When I first learned about menstruation at age seven," says Margie Profet, "I couldn't believe it! Then when we watched these films when I was 10 or 11 -- remember those cartoons that showed the ovaries and the Fallopian tubes? -- I thought, This is really bizarre. And when they said, 'Well, the body gets rid of the uterine lining because it has nothing to do,' I thought that didn't make sense. It bugged me."

A quarter-century later, Profet, 35, thinks she has finally made sense of it all, and in a startling turnaround, it is her views that are bugging...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now

Subscribe
Subscribe

Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on TIME.com

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!