20% off your first 3 months with code BETTERPERIOD (monthly subscriptions only)

Everything You Need to Know About Seed Cycling

Up until a few years ago, most people had never heard of seed cycling. That’s not to say it’s new on the scene, though, because it’s been around for a long time. But what is seed cycling, and why would you want to do it? As a company built around helping you balance your hormones, we thought we should fill you in! We’ve got the full scoop, including some of the questions about seed cycling that we get most frequently. 


Note: for ease of explaining the concept of seed cycling, this article is based on someone who has a 28-30 day cycle. Only about 10-15% of women have a cycle that falls in this range, so if yours is shorter or longer, don’t fret!


What is seed cycling?

Simply put, it’s natural PMS relief. Seed cycling involves eating specific seeds (each of which have specific nutrients!) to support the hormone fluctuations that occur in each phase of the menstrual cycle. While there’s not a lot of specific research on seed cycling, there is a lot of research on various nutrients and how they benefit hormone health. 


And the process is actually really simple, we promise! Just eat certain seeds depending on whether you’re in the follicular or luteal phase of your cycle. We’ve outlined it all below. 

The Follicular Phase


When: Days 1-14 of your cycle - during this phase, you need a balanced amount of estrogen to build the uterine lining. 


What Seeds: Pumpkin seeds are rich in zinc, which aids in progesterone production and supports healthy testosterone levels. They’re also rich in antioxidants, which help protect your ovaries, eggs, and reproductive system as a whole. 


Flax seeds contain lignans, which aid in estrogen release, meaning they bind excess estrogen and help eliminate it to support ideal estrogen levels.

Both flax and pumpkin seeds are rich in omega-3 fats, which encourage uterine blood flow and maintain healthy cell membranes. 


How much? 2 Tablespoons total, ideally ground for better absorption

The Luteal Phase 


When: Days 15-28 of your cycle - during this phase, the corpus luteum starts to release progesterone, which is a sex hormone that helps thicken the uterine lining and prepare it for implantation. 


What Seeds: Sesame seeds are rich in zinc, which aids in progesterone production. They also contain lignans, which help block excess estrogen, and they have a slew of other benefits, including the ability to lower inflammation. 


Sunflower seeds contain selenium, which helps improve liver function and remove excess estrogen. They also contain vitamin E, which stimulates progesterone production. 


How much? 2 Tablespoons total, ideally ground for better absorption


We’ve made it even easier with Funk It’s seed cycling kits. We’ve sourced all the (organic) seeds you need - pumpkin, flax, sesame and sunflower - and perfectly blended them to match your cycle’s needs. As you move through your cycle, your specialized seed blends are right there to help along the way. 


What are the benefits of seed cycling?

Thankfully, there are lots of them! Everything from regulating your cycle and promoting on-time periods to reduced mood swings, less PMS, fewer cramps, and less hormonal acne. Seed cycling can even help decrease symptoms associated with conditions like PCOS and endometriosis. Have we sold you yet?


Keep in mind that all bodies are different, so while some might see fairly immediate results, others might need longer to see the benefits of seed cycling. But the nutrients involved in seed cycling are good for all of us, no matter our cycle length or medical history. 


It’s important to note that, while seed cycling can be transformative, it won’t do all the heavy lifting. It’s key to also implement some basic nutrition and lifestyle habits to help balance your hormones. Things like drinking water, moving regularly, getting enough sleep, and eating a balanced, nutrient-dense diet.


FAQ  


How can I use my seeds?

Thankfully, it’s pretty easy once you begin to make seed cycling a habit. Funk It seeds are delicious in smoothies, yogurt, oatmeal, granola, sprinkled on salads, mixed into nut butter, added to chia seed pudding, added to salad dressings, or any other way you choose to enjoy them! 


Do I have to start on day 1 of my cycle?

Nope! You can start wherever you are in your cycle. All you need to know is the first day of your last period and you can start with the appropriate seed blend. If you don’t have a regular cycle, you can start cycling on a new moon and then follow a traditional seed cycling schedule to help get your hormones back in alignment. 


What if I don’t menstruate, I’m menopausal, or post-menopausal?

No worries! Seed cycling can still help! If you’re pre-menopausal and no longer have a regular cycle, you can start any time and do two weeks of each seed blend. If you have entered menopause or are beyond it, you can also start anytime you like, sticking with one blend for 1-2 weeks before moving to the other for 1-2 weeks. 


Can I seed cycle if I’m on hormonal birth control?

Yes, you can! While most forms of hormonal birth control stop your normal cycle (the bleeding you experience each month is actually termed a withdrawal bleed and is not a true period), the nutrients present in Funk It seeds are still great for your hormones. And if you’re planning on getting off hormonal birth control, seed cycling can be an awesome way to supply your body with the necessary nutrients to make the transition smoother. 


How do you know if your hormones need balancing? 

It’s not normal to feel terrible before (or during!) your period or during other parts of your cycle. High estrogen can cause breast soreness, mood swings, hair loss, weight gain, endometriosis, and more. Low progesterone also causes issues, including the symptoms above, as well as anxiety, trouble sleeping, or even hormonal headaches. Incorporating seed cycling and overall high-quality nutrition can help improve some of these symptoms pretty quickly, sometimes as soon as one to three months. 


We’re Here to Make it Easier

Look, we get that beginning to incorporate seeds can be a little overwhelming. That’s why we’re here! It’s our passion to help our customers and women everywhere, not only as your go-to source for seed cycling, but also for education around women’s health issues. Because we don’t know about you, but no one ever really educated us on our cycle growing up. All too often, periods and hormones are thought of as something to shy away from, when really we should be leaning in and learning more.


Shop seed cycling kits here.