Seed cycling can be a gentle, tasty, and effective tool in balancing hormones.
Seed cycling is the rotation of two seeds, pumpkin and sunflower (or sesame), throughout the month. It is easy and inexpensive, giving biphasic support to balance hormones. Pumpkin seeds are high in vitamins and minerals that support the estrogen-dominant follicular phase. Sunflower and sesame seeds support production of progesterone in the luteal phase of the cycle. All the seeds provide healthy fats, which act as precursors to hormones, to the body.
The seeds can either be ground in a coffee grinder for optimal absorption or chewed thoroughly. Many people like to make seed cycling a part of their breakfast routine. The seeds can also be incorporated into meals, such as a topping for salads.
The point of seed cycling is to create rhythm because the body thrives on rhythm and routine.
For the entire month, everyone eats 1 tablespoon ground flax seed (can add to a little liquid).
If one is menstruating regularly, from days 1 (first day of period) to 14 of cycle, eat 1 tablespoon pumpkin seeds daily.
From days 15-28 of cycle, switch to eating 1 tablespoon sunflower or sesame seeds daily. (Sesame seeds must be ground up first because they are too small to thoroughly chew.)
For males and those not menstruating on a regular schedule, follow the moon phases, which change every two weeks. From new moon to full moon, eat 1 tablespoon pumpkin seeds. From full moon to new moon, eat 1 tablespoon sunflower or sesame seeds.
Why the moon phases? Because we have evolved to menstruate following the moon. New moon corresponds with the start of the period and the full moon corresponds with ovulation (and increased energy and libido).
If you don’t do well with seeds, don’t fret. Flax oil and evening primrose oil can be used in place of pumpkin and sunflower seeds respectively.
Also note, the first few periods after starting seed cycling can be worse than usual. That’s because the body is cleaning out. Let it do what it needs to do and we will be here to support you.
PS: The next New Moon is July 10 and the next Full Moon is July 24.