Seed cycling is believed to help balance oestrogen in the follicular (pre-ovulation) phase and progesterone in the luteal (post-ovulation) phase of the menstrual cycle.
There are two phases for seed cycling:
Phase 1 of seed cycling involves eating one tablespoon of raw, ground pumpkin seeds and one tablespoon of raw, ground flax seeds from day one of your period until the day before you ovulate. Phase 1 should be about two weeks for most people, presuming the menstrual cycle is regular.
Phase 2 of seed cycling involves eating one tablespoon of raw, ground sunflower seeds and one tablespoon of raw, ground sesame seeds per day from the day of ovulation (this is around day 14 for most people with a regular cycle) until the day before the first day of your period. Phase 2 should also last about two weeks for most people.
These seeds contain specific vitamins, minerals, fatty acids and fibre which are believed to support hormonal function. Phytoestrogens are oestrogen modulating compounds – when oestrogen levels are too high, phytoestrogens will help to lower them. When oestrogen levels are too low, phytoestrogens will help to increase them.
These seeds are also an excellent source of fibre to help feed the microbiome which is responsible for detoxifying hormones in a healthy manner.