Did you know there are foods that have the power to boost your body’s own production of hormones? It may be surprising, but there are certain seeds that contain high amounts of lignans, vitamins, and minerals that help support hormone production and release. These seeds are flax, pumpkin, sesame, and sunflower seeds. Integrating these seeds at different times during the cycle is known as seed rotation and helps to support optimal hormone balance.
To understand the potential power of seed rotation, it is important to be familiar with the basics of the female menstrual cycle.
The female menstrual cycle is typically a 28 day cycle and involves an orchestrated interplay of hormones that result in changes in the ovaries and uterus. During the first part of the cycle, an egg is developed and released from one of the ovaries (ovulation) while the uterus thickens preparing to receive a fertilized egg. If fertilization does not occur, the endometrial lining of the uterus is shed, resulting in menstruation. The first day of menses is considered day 1 of the cycle. Estrogen and progesterone are the key hormones responsible for regulating this cycle. Estrogen levels are elevated during the first part of the cycle, whereas, progesterone levels predominate during the last part of the cycle. It is the imbalance of estrogen and progesterone levels during the cycle that contribute to symptoms such PMS, bloating, irregular cycles, and menstrual cramps.
Seed rotation can be used to help support hormone balance and to improve the symptoms that result from hormone imbalance.
Day 1 to 14: 1 tablespoon each ground raw flax and pumpkin seed
Day 15 to 28: 1 tablespoon each ground raw sesame and sunflower seed
Flax seeds contain a high amount of lignans, which are important for estrogen metabolism. Pumpkin seeds contain a high amount of zinc, which primes the body for progesterone production. Sesame and sunflower seeds contain a high amount of zinc and selenium, which is needed for progesterone production.
Seeds can be eaten as a snack or added to smoothies, yogurt, and salads. It can take up to 3 months to notice improvements in your symptoms and menstrual cycle.
At Hermann Wellness we offer comprehensive hormone testing, nutritional therapies and bio-identical hormones to our patients. Our offices are located in Tampa and St. Petersburg. Please call the office at 812-902-9559 for more information or to schedule an appointment.