Everyone told me that when you hit 40 years old, your hormones go crazy. Of course, I never believed that mine would wack out (yes, I’m delusional). But, they were right. As I got closer to turning 40, I started to see the shift and when I turned 40, it’s like a timer went off and everything went crazy! I found that the week leading up to my period I was bloating like crazy and my emotions were out of control. Something needed to change.
I mentioned it to my OBGYN at my next yearly check-up. Knowing that I don’t want to be on birth control, etc. she recommended increasing the amount of magnesium in my diet. I started taking a great magnesium supplement (https://www.usana.com/s/zkUA-1) and upped my magnesium-rich foods (raw cacao, almonds, etc.). I definitely saw an improvement, but I was still needing some more help.
At the beginning of 2020, at my annual physical, I mentioned the hormonal mood swings to my doctor (holistic) and she recommended I try seed-cycling. It can take about three months to see the effects…and when my third cycle came around, my mood swings were SO much better…dare I even say, typical! So, you might be thinking, that sounds great, but WHAT IS SEED CYCLING?
Seed cycling has you eating 1-2 tablespoons of Pumpkin seeds and Flax seeds daily for the first 14 days of your cycle (day 1 = first day of period) and then switching to Sunflower seeds and Sesame seeds for the last 14 days.
Pumpkin seeds and Flax seeds help balance estrogen during the follicular phase when estrogen levels are high. They are a good source of fiber, zinc, and healthy omega-3 fatty acids (reduces inflammation). The fiber aids in digestion and helps to remove excess estrogen from the body.
Sunflower seeds and Sesame seed are taken during the luteal phase as progesterone levels start to rise. Sesame seeds help avoid PMS symptoms by binding excess estrogen and sunflower seeds have selenium that supports liver and hormone function.
You can incorporate seeds into your diet by:
1. Adding them to smoothies — great for the pumpkin seed + flax seed phase (this is my favorite protein shake mix: https://www.usana.com/s/DHyI5
2. On avocado toast — great for sunflower seed + sesame seed phase
3. Added to oatmeal or in homemade granola
4. Energy balls (I found a great recipe online is posted under recipes)
For an even more detailed explanation, go to https://mindbodygreen.com/articles/seed-cycling-benefits-and-how-it-works
Give it a try! If anything, you’ll add a lot of great nutrition to your diet! 🙂