As a lover of learning all things hormone related I recently came across “seed cycling” and thought I would share this interesting concept… as women we all know the woes of a menstrual cramp, mood swings and for some of us less fortunate PMS, low energy, back ache, irregular cycles and uterine fibroids – all of which simply boil down to hormonal imbalances (in particular an imbalance between the hormones progesterone and oestrogen). Seed cycling is all about correcting this imbalance by supporting the production of the right hormones at the right times in the cycle. To understand how this works you need to know two things:
1) Oestrogen levels increase during the first part of our cycle whereas progesterone levels increase during the last part of our cycle whilst oestrogen levels are slowing declining.
2) Hormones are balanced by lignans (which bind up excess hormones) and essential fatty acids (which support hormone production).
Different seeds contain different types and amounts of lignans and essential fatty acids and therefore different seeds will influence how our body binds excess hormones and which hormones are being produced. It is best to have flax and pumpkin seeds during the first part (day 1-14) and sesame and sunflower seeds during the second part (day 15-menstruation). Naturopathic doctor Kristy Vermeulen (author of Happy Hormones) recommends 1 tablespoon of both flax and pumpkin or sesame and sunflower daily. According to the research on seed cycling, marked improvements in menstrual related symptoms are noticed after about 3 months so it does take a while – but given all of the amazing nutritious value and health benefits of seeds why not give it a try!
If you want to learn more I have pasted a useful link to a guide below: