Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Seed Cycling For Natural Hormonal Balance



Rotating of seeds is a valuable way of restoring hormonal balance for men and women.   Seed cycling is so effective because the hulls of the seeds contain chemicals called lignans, which help modulate the hormonal pathways of the body while the seed oils are comprised of essential (or omega) fatty acids that provide the building blocks for steroid hormone synthesis. 

As each seed type contains variations of these lignans and fatty acids, rotation of these seeds through the month provides the body with the variety of precursors it needs to create normal hormonal cycles.  The additional oils (EPA/DHA & GLA) may also be added for added balancing.

Women:
The rotation plan can be done according to either the menstrual cycle (if it is fairly regular) or phases of the moon (if the menstrual cycle is absent or too irregular)

* From days 1-14 of the menstrual cycle (or from new moon to full moon)
1-2 Tablespoon(s) per day of ground flax/ pumpkin seeds/ or Chia Seeds
EPA/DHA 2,000 – 3,000 mg EPA/DHA (1,500 each)
Flax and pumpkin seeds support the ESTROGEN dominant time of your cycle and balancing the omega 3 pathway.

* From days 15 – 28 of the menstrual cycle (or from full moon to new moon)
1-2 Tablespoon(s) per day of ground sesame or sunflower seeds.
GLA (Borage or Evening Primrose Oil) 500 mg
GLA (rich in Omega 6s that contains linoleic acid) converts in the body ultimately to prostaglandins, hormone-like molecules that help regulate Inflammation and blood pressure as well as heart, gastrointestinal, and kidney functions
Sesame and sunflower seeds support the PROGESTERONE peaks of your cycle and balancing the omega 6 pathway.

Men:
The rotation plan is done according to the phases of the moon (and is the opposite of women’s rotation):
* From full moon to the new moon: 1-2 Tablespoon per day of ground flax or pumpkin seeds.
* From new moon to the full moon: 1-2 Tablespoon per day of ground sesame or sunflower seeds.

Seed Preparation: It works best to use a coffee or spice grinder to grind the seeds.  Only prepare a few days supply at a time as the seeds may oxidize and become less potent.  Store the ground seeds in a jar with a tight fitting lid and keep in the refrigerator.   One or two tablespoons per day can be used.  You can eat the seeds with any foods such as salads, cereals, vegetables, grains or mix them in a little rice or soymilk and drink them.  It adds a nutty crunchy taste to foods. IT IS BEST TO USE ORGANIC AND RAW SEEDS.


Seed Facts




Flax Seeds 
Flax seeds are high in B vitamins, manganese and magnesium. These power-packed seeds have many other nutrition components. 100 grams of ground flax seed supplies about 450 kilocalories, 28 grams/fiber and 20 grams/protein. Flax seeds should be ALWAYS be ground fresh before consumption (reduces rancidity) and can be added to any meal.


Pumpkin Seeds 
Pumpkin seeds are very beneficial to your health because of the minerals they provide.  The seeds contain high amounts of iron, magnesium phosphorus and zinc.  They are also a fantastic source of protein (2 grams per tablespoon), phytosterols and beneficial polyunsaturated fats.




Sesame Seeds 
Sesame seeds are very rich in iron, magnesium, manganese and copper. There are about 90 mg of calcium in one tablespoon of unhulled seeds and 10 mg in hulled seeds. They also contain vitamin E (tocopherol) and vitamin B1 (thiamine). Sesame seeds contain the richest source of lignans, namely sesamin (a phytoestrogen), which has antioxidant and anti-cancer properties. The phytosterols present in sesame seeds are associated with reduced levels of blood cholesterol. 



 Sunflower Seeds 
Sunflower Seeds are a rich source of vitamin E; also contain linoleic acid (an essential fatty acid), amino acids and minerals that include magnesium, potassium, zinc and calcium. Sunflower seeds are rich in phytosterols and can be part of a cholesterol-lowering diet. The nutritional value in one serving  (1/4 cup) includes, 3.0 g/fiber and 6.0 g/protein. A serving of raw sunflower seeds also provides a person’s daily requirement of iron (about 13%). 

12 comments:

  1. Why do the seeds have to be ground? Are they any less effective if just eaten whole?

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    Replies
    1. Seeds are very small and difficult for out bodies to breakdown. Eaten whole they are a great fiber source but we can not break them down enough to get the most of the healthy fats, vitamins, and minerals they contain.

      Grinding the seeds makes the fats, vitamins, and minerals more bio-available.

      Hope that answers your question, feel free to ask more!

      Delete
  2. I love this idea...i eat a lot of them but didn't know i could give myself hormonal support by cycling them...what about hemp seeds? All the time? Is there anything wrong with eating flax and chia everyday? Could i just eat MORE of them during the estrogen phase and less during the progesterone phase? I like to soak mine before eating also to decrease phytic acid (effects mineral absorbtion...) thanks for this.

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  3. What is your opinion on hemp seeds, as the questioner asks above? And what about the pre-soaking of the seeds - I've heard of this too - what do you think?

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    Replies
    1. Hello, thank you for your comments.

      Hemp seeds are also healthy and can be added to the diet. Specifically for the hormonal balancing and seed cycling, the recommended seeds are the ones that have been traditionally used because of their specific nutrients. So I would use them for cycling. Flax/Chia/or pumpkin seeds are most commonly used in the first half of the cycle.

      You can include smaller amounts of the seeds in your diet and just emphasize them during that part of the cycle. and Soaking also inceases the nutrient availability of the seeds and makes them easier to digest.

      Delete
  4. Can I do this while breast feeding? Will it affect my son at all negatively or my milk supply? Thanks:))

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    Replies
    1. Hello JS, sorry for the late reply, I was not getting notified of the comments.

      Adding ground seeds to the diet should be safe during breast feeding as they are foods. The added nutrients, and healthy fats are beneficial to the breast milk.

      Delete
  5. My daughter has been doing seed cycling for 2 months. 2 days before changing seeds she has had a loose bowel movement and after changing seeds she doesn't sleep well when she gets up she feels extremely tired and goes back to bed a few hrs later then sleeps a lot. Is this normal to straightening her hormones. She had heavy, irregular periods, cramps and was very burpy..She's not doing the oils yet. Trying to get her to exercise.

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    Replies
    1. Believe it or not I've found out all of those symptoms are those of parasites, from long personal and clinical experience using applied kinesiology to figure out what the problems are. Parasites leave the body when it starts to get healthier, as they cannot exist in a healthy body. When the menstrual cycle starts and the lining starts to shed, they disturb where the parasites are attached, in the uterus, and the parasites "wriggle" and cause pain as they touch all sorts of nerve endings. Case in point: one cycle when I had taken a bunch of things the month before that caused my hormones to be a lot healthier, I got the worst cramps ever, that reminded me of high school. Finally figured out it was parasites, and took tons of black walnut/wormwood to kill them and THE CRAMPS WENT AWAY WITHIN 15 MINUTES.

      Parasites cause nausea/burpiness/loose stool/fatigue unless handled with enough parasite-killing herbs.

      I'd add in black walnut/wormwood tincture probably every day but especially over any days she has symptoms like that.
      Hope this helps! I know, I've not found this in any literature but it sure is the case and I've duplicated the results for my clients in my nutritional therapy business. :)

      Delete
  6. I got a cycle from doing hormone injections last month. I decided to stop doing that and start the seed cycling when I got a cycle from the injections. Yesterday was day 28 and still no cycle. And no not pregnant. Do I continue the seeds from day 14-28? or Do I just start day 1-14 even though I haven't had a cycle. What do you mean by phases of the moon? I don't get that please explain. I don't get cycles prior to the injections.

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  7. I'm very intrested in seed cycling and I understand using ground seeds is necessary, I just wonder if seed butters (for example tahini, and pumpkin seed butter) would do the job? The ones I use are made using the seeds only, no added ingredients.

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  8. I get very severe PMS symptoms (water retention in feet and ankles, breast tenderness) and also mid cycle bloating. Do I need to know if oestrogen or progesterone are dominant or really low which are causing these symptoms? Is seed cycling something you could do without knowing what hormone is causing the problem? Just a bit worried as in if I consume sesame seeds in the second half of the cycle while progesterone is low, will it lower progesterone even further as sesame seeds are phytoesterols?

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