A collaboration post between Laura’s Natural Life and Healthfully Hannah
If you have no idea what seed cycling is, don't worry, you're definitely not alone.
The first time I heard about seed cycling was when I was working in a holistic healthcare office and I had a hormonal saliva test done. The doctor at the lab who ran my test suggested seed cycling for me, rather than supplementation to balance my hormones.
Basically, seed cycling is the easiest way to balance your female hormones. It doesn't involve taking supplements or using any hormonal creams. It's just eating seeds! It's really that easy.
Ok, there's a bit more to it than that, but it is still one of the easiest (and most natural!) ways to balance hormones.
How Seed Cycling Can Help
Seed cycling can help with a any number of hormonal imbalance symptoms like acne, abnormally light bleeding, heavy bleeding, fatigue, infertility, sleep issues, PMS and irregular periods.
The key is to ingest certain seeds during the different phases of your cycle. These seeds are high in Essential Fatty Acids, which your hormones love, and also contain lignin to help bind and escort excessive estrogen from the body.
If you have a regular 28-day cycle you will want to consume one set of seeds during the follicular phase of your cycle (the first half), and a second set of seeds during the luteal phase (the second half.)
However, most of us don't have a perfectly "regular" 28-day cycle - and that's ok!
If you have a far from regular cycle - don't worry! You can still use seed cycling to balance your hormones. Typically in this case you would want to start ingesting the first set of seeds when the next full moon occurs and 14 days later switch to the second set.
The first phase of the menstrual cycle is called the follicular phase. The phase starts on the first day of your period and ends with ovulation. During this phase of the cycle, the cycle is primarily running on estrogen, rather than progesterone. The estrogen builds up through ovulation. However, you need the progesterone to kick in in order to ovulate. For a textbook 28-day cycle, this would last from Day 1-Day 14.
Related: The Healthy Girl's Guide To Periods.
Many women have hormonal imbalance, specifically an excess of estrogen and too little progesterone. This can be from toxin exposure like from cosmetics, plastic and more.
How to Seed Cycle
During this phase, you would want to ingest seeds that have properties to bind excessive estrogen and encourage progesterone to release after ovulation.
The two types of seeds for the first half of your cycle are flax and pumpkin seeds. Flax seeds contain lignans, which help to bind excess estrogen so that it can be eliminated from the body. They are also known to protect against hormone- related cancers such as breast and prostate cancer. Pumpkin seeds are high in zinc, which support progesterone.
The second half of the menstrual cycle is called the luteal phase. This phase begins at ovulation and lasts through the end of your cycle.
During this phase, you would want to ingest sesame seeds to block excess estrogen - as they contain the special lignans to do so. The sunflower seeds are high in selenium, which is an essential nutrient for hormone balance.
For exact details on the best ways to consume seeds, how much you should consume to promote hormone balance, a chart to track your progress, and our favorite tips for making it simple, download the Seed Cycling Guide below.
Soaking seeds? If you suspect any type of digestive issues, consider soaking seeds before consuming them. This reduces the naturally occurring phytic acid, which can cause digestive stress and issues with absorption.
Keep in mind, seeds should be ground, not whole. Whole seeds often pass right through our digestive systems, which means we don't absorb their nutrients. Grinding seeds allows for greater absorption. You can either buy seeds that are already ground, or grind your own if you have a coffee grinder.
Related: The Surprising Benefits of Seeds
To make it easy on yourself, prepare a mixture that you can easily use when you're on the go! Just grind equal parts flax and pumpkin seeds for days 1-14 of your cycle and equal parts sesame and sunflower for days 15-28 of your cycle.
Lastly, seed cycling isn't a quick fix. You will want to give seed cycling a try for a minimum of three menstrual cycles before expecting to see changes.
Don't forget to download your free Seed Cycling Guide below!
Seed cycling is a fantastic method to balancing hormones naturally, without the side effects that come with conventional methods.
Do you plan to give seed cycling a try? Tell us below:
Hannah of HealthfullyHannah.com empowers others to live healthfully through Clean Eating, Natural Beauty, and Nontoxic Living. You can get access to her free library of resources that will help you eat well, transition to natural beauty, and detox your home.
Laura is the creator of LaurasNaturalLife.com, including The Crave-Free Cleanse and Clean Beauty Academy. When she's not creating exciting things on the internet, she can be found devouring an acai bowl and having one-sided conversations with her dog, Tedford. You can get your free Clean Beauty Boot Camp Mini-Course at LaurasNaturalLife.com