Supporting your Hormonal Health with Seeds
If you clicked on this article, chances are your hormonal health has probably crossed your mind once or twice (or a million times!). Your menstrual cycles are completely irregular, you’re grumpy, you have acne, cramping, oh the list goes on. If any of this sounds familiar, boy do I have the perfect suggestion for you. Let me ask you, ever heard of seed cycling?
Why Does Seed Cycling Work?
Seed cycling is an easy and effective way to help balance hormones using the natural power of healing foods – seeds! This works by targeting two phases – the follicular phase, and the luteal phase. Day 1 of the follicular phase is your first day of menstruation. Egg follicles appear in your ovaries, but as this phase takes its course and estrogen gradually rises, only one egg matures as ovulation approaches and the others stop growing and die. In this phase, healthy levels of estrogen are a must, and pumpkin/flax seeds will certainly help with that, as they are high in phytoestrogens (the good guys!) and fiber to help with estrogen metabolism. In the luteal phase, after ovulation, that follicle that originally released the mature egg starts to release progesterone. Just like with the follicular phase, where estrogen is important, in the luteal phase we are concerned about optimal progesterone levels, which is where sunflower and sesame seeds are helpful.
How to Seed Cycle
This protocol only requires 4 different seeds, flax, pumpkin, sesame, and sunflower. Basically, from day 1-14 of your menstrual cycle, you want to be having 1 tbsp of ground flax and 1 tbsp of pumpkin seeds. Then, from days 15-28, you want to have 1 tbsp of sunflower seeds and 1 tbsp of ground sesame seeds. Easy, right? However, to get the full effects, you don’t want to be having seeds from the 1-14 day period (pumpkin and flax) when you are in the 15-28 day time zone, and vice versa. Within a few months, this could be a complete game changer for you!
Want to know where to add these seeds? There are lots of options! My personal favorite way is by adding them to my smoothie bowls, but you can also add them to salads, oatmeal, yogurt, whatever you prefer! If you don’t like the seeds on their own, you can absolutely have them in their buttered form! The whole idea is that we want the oils from these seeds, so you can do as you please! For example, sesame butter = tahini, which is wonderful on top of stir fry!