Seed Cycling for Hormone Balance – Gentle Ways to Restore Normal

Seed cycling for hormone balance is one of those things that seems far too simple to ever work, but work it does! It’s very gentle nutritional support that encourages your cycle to follow it’s natural rhythm and gives the hormones gentle nudges in the right direction.  Best of all, it’s done with whole foods, not with supplements or drugs, so it’s entirely natural, simple, inexpensive and gives you a whole different way to keep in contact with your body. Not only that, it can be helpful in situations that you might not think of right away – like for women post menopause, and for men looking to boost fertility. Yup, men.

What is Seed Cycling?

Seed cycling is a gentle way to help your body balance your hormones naturally by adding different seeds into your diet at different phases of your menstrual cycle. Simply adding seeds like flax, pumpkin, sunflower and sesame seeds to your diet at different times in your cycle can promote healthy hormones by encouraging your body to either produce or detoxify certain hormones. It is literally using foods to either promote estrogen detoxification, in the first half of your cycle, or to increase progesterone production in the second.

Seed Cycling for Hormone Balance – What Does That Actually  Help?

Seed cycling for hormone balance helps your body to smoothly find it’s way to a more normal balance and therefore can help with almost any symptom related to hormones including:

  • Acne
  • PMS
  • Irregular Cycle
  • Infertility or sub-fertility
  • Too light or too heavy bleeding
  • Peri-menopause
  • Post-menopausal hormone symptoms like low libido or depression
  • PCOS
  • Irregular cycle

Now – having said that, seed cycling for hormone balance is NOT a quick fix – you’re working to re-establish the rhythms of your body and that takes time.  Typically you will start noticing changes after 3-4 months (3-4 cycles) but the great news is that because this is simply using foods it is safe to combine with other therapies and can help to enhance their actions.  If you have one of the more serious hormonal issues like PCOS, then probably seed cycling isn’t going to fix it, but it can certainly help other measures to work better and help your body to find it’s rhythm.

Quick Review of Your Cycle and The Moon (And Why  Those Two Things Go Together):

This is how your cycle and the moon go together. Ovulate on full moon (day 14) and bleed on the new moon (day 1)

This is how your cycle and the moon go together. Ovulate on full moon (day 14) and bleed on the new moon (day 1)

At heart, you are all wild animals.  You love to pretend to be civilized and to wear a veneer of the tame, but truly and deeply your body belongs to the forest. In the “wild state” of being you wouldn’t have been exposed to artificial light and so very powerful signals were sent to your brain by the changing light of the moon, and this was one of the ways your body kept rhythms, including your hormone rhythms.  Women’s typical hormone cycles are 28 days, which happens to be the length of a full lunar cycle as well (actually 28 and a fraction days). This is not a coincidence! You are designed to be at peak fertility, meaning ovulation, at the full moon (coincidentally when nights are brightest and you’re more likely to enjoy the sight of a partner). Fertility is lowest, meaning menstruation, at the new moon when nights are darkest.  Men’s fertility follows women’s in this scenario so that we’re all most fertile at the same time – it works best that way for the baby-making.




How Do I Seed Cycle?

Seed Cycling for hormone balance adds seeds into your diet following the rhythm of your body or the moon.

Seed Cycling for hormone balance adds seeds into your diet following the rhythm of your body or the moon.

This is literally eating different seeds for different parts of your monthly rhythm because they help to restore your body to balance.  You’ll recall that for women our hormones change in a predictable way with our cycle.  Men have fewer hormone fluctuations through the month, but their peak fertility still should match with women’s – and everyone’s peak fertility is typically at the full moon (we are wild animals underneath it all).

Day 1 – 14 (Follicular phase):

1 tbsp flax seeds
1 tbsp pumpkin seeds

Day 15 – 28 (Luteal phase):

1 tbsp sunflower seeds
1 tbsp sesame seeds

Eat your 2 tablespoons of mixed seeds every day according to your cycle. The seeds should be ground in a mortar and pestle, coffee grinder or vitamix and added to smoothies, soups, oatmeal, yogurt, cereal, salad or however else it’s easy to get them into you.  Also of those four seeds try not to add them in other times as snacks because it makes things confusing- so snacking on sunflower seeds on your flax/pumpkin days is probably not going to help your body to find it’s rhythm.

If you feel like you need a little extra push in the right direction, then you can also add supportive oils to this picture.  Fish oil, about 1500 mg combined EPA and DHA can be added to Days 1 – 14 and Evening Primrose Oil (EPO) can be added to days 15 – 28.

Why These Seeds?

The pumpkin and flax seed combo is a potent one to help your body detoxify the extra estrogen that can plague this time of the month (the lignans especially from the flax seeds bind to excess estrogen and help your body to eliminate it) High zinc levels in pumpkin seeds prevent the estrogen from converting to harmful forms of testosterone and also prime your body for progesterone production which will happen in the second half of the cycle.

The sunflower and sesame combo used in the luteal phase of the cycle has a much lighter dose of lignans from the sesame seeds, but is rich in zinc and selenium which helps progesterone production.  These seeds are also a rich source of linoleic acid, an essential fatty acid which can convert to gamma linolenic acid, which also helps the balance between progesterone and estrogen.

The seeds should be organic and raw if  possible and ground fresh every day or two just because the oils in the seeds can go rancid if they’re ground for too long.  You can add the seeds in anywhere that it’s easy for you and if you completely hate eating seeds you can mix them into a small glass of juice and gulp it down.

If you’re working on getting pregnant and need more information about how seed cycling and pregnancy go together then read this post – seeds are a tremendous support to your own little sprout. 🙂

The Big Picture of Seed Cycling

The big picture of seed cycling for hormone balance. Because your cycle follows the moon.

The big picture of seed cycling for hormone balance. Because your cycle follows the moon.

If you want a handout form – it’s right here:  Seed Cycle for Hormone Balance

Also – if you don’t know the moon’s current phase, here’s that info. Thanks reader Zahra for reminding me that this isn’t here!

CURRENT MOON



276 thoughts on “Seed Cycling for Hormone Balance – Gentle Ways to Restore Normal

  1. RTM

    What would you suggest for someone who has cycles that vary between 28-34 days? Should I keep using the sesame/sunflower seeds until my period starts?

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Yeah – so there are two ways to do it. One is to keep taking the sunflower sesame until your next cycle starts, the other is to stick to a pure 14-day alternation. Typically I suggest continuing the sunflower sesame until your next cycle starts for a few months to see if that progesterone boost int he luteal phase will normalize your cycle. Lots of times it does, which is great. So try that for at least three months, but six is probably better. If it isn’t working then switch to a pure 14-day alternation and see what that does. Good luck and keep me posted!

      Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Juliana,
      This is a great question and honestly, I don’t know the answer. Sprouting activates lots of enzymes within the seed and I’ve never seen any research or data about what that does to the hormone-altering properties of the seeds. So the big answer is ‘I don’t know.’ Ha! Sorry about that. I would say if you’ve been seed cycling for a while and know how it feels in your body then you could probably try switching to sprouted seeds to see if it feels the same. If you haven’t seed cycled before then I’d start with un-sprouted seeds until you get a feel for how it works for you. If you do try sprouted seeds I’d love to hear about your experience!

      Reply
  2. Kerstin

    hi,
    I am 43, just ended a relationship where we were going to start planning a Family. Now single I am concerned about egghealth and maintaining my posibilities. I am and have always been regular. still 27-28 days cycle, spotting 2-3 days before period onset. I have hemofilia A, so that could be the reason, or perhaps low progesterone, though labwork showed normal progesteron Levels. I know I am periomenopause, low AMH, 2. But still hoping to meet someone. Would seedcycling benefit me in maintaining egg Health or prolonging it? I have no symptoms of anything, feel same as in my 30’s. Thanks

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Kerstin,
      I honestly don’t know. Seed cycling certainly helps to boost fertility in women with irregular cycles, but I don’t really know if it will help to increase egg quality or ovarian reserve – there just isn’t a lot of data. Within my client population the women who have used it for fertility have largely had irregular cycles, so clinically I can’t say either. My gut feeling would be that it’s nutritive and certainly can’t hurt, although the degree to which it will help is unknown. Does that make sense? And best of luck to you in the quest for a partner!

      Reply
  3. Kathy Cole

    Hi Dr. Amy, I am a 53 year old. I am probably peri menopausal. I still get my period but it is irregular and varies in heaviness. My question is how would the seed cycling work for me? Do I take it the same way even with irregular periods?
    Thanks so much.
    Kathy

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi KAthy,
      Great question! So, when we’re looking to promote regularity in such a volatile time, I’d start with the first day of your next cycle, but then maintain a 28 day seed cycle no matter what your actual bleeding is doing. So essentially we’re just pretending that your cycle is regular even though at this time it isn’t going to be. It helps to ease the transition. Good luck and keep me posted!

      Reply
  4. Virginia

    Dr. Amy,

    I am a 48-year-old, I suspect perimenopausal, who has a very heavy flow and bad cramping one day in my cycle. The other days are regular flow and I have a pretty regular 26-30 day cycle. This is after a uterine ablation 6 months ago. Before was 2-3 days of very heavy bleeding but no cramping. I began 4 months ago with awful mood swings and depression plus new weird headaches which all seem to center around my menstrual cycle. I started a herbal supplement with black cohosh and dong quai, but I suspect the dong quai is not helping my heavy bleeding. but it does help some with my mood. I am excited to try seed cycling and hopefully ditch the herbal supplement. I have also just changed my diet to a predominately vegan nutritarian diet, eating only whole foods, lots of veggies and fruits and limited starches and grains.

    My question is I really want to add in the DHA/EPA and EPO, but I am confused about the dosing. Is the 1500mg the amount of Omega 3 I see listed? I am only seeing supplements with anywhere between 200/100 DHA/EPA to 600/200. What exactly am I looking for?

    I really love natural methods for getting my body healthy. Thanks for all the information you provide.

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      HHi Virginia,
      I’ll be excited to hear how it all goes for you! Yes – dosing on the omega-3 oils is so darn confusing. I”d say look for one with about 1000 – 1500 mg total omega-3s. I really like nordic naturals ultimate omega and the dose on that one is 2 softgels. For the EPO I think the easiest one to find is by Barleans – it has 2.6 g of oils per 2 capsules and about 250 mg of that is the EPO. The variability in dose between products is extremely wide so thanks for asking such a great question!

      Reply
  5. Kristine

    I tried posting a comment but it didn’t show , trying again! I was so excited to see this article I am trying seed cycling to help my hormones . I wondered if it was normal to have a few side effects on starting seed cycling …maybe my body is just recalibrating the hormones, I had a migraine which I haven’t had in ages and are usually hormone triggered and some light spotting. I am hoping that’s all it is! Also it sounds like certain seeds stimulate production of certain hormones ? and I actually had my hormones tested and my estrogen was level it was my progesterone that was really wacky and spiking throughout the month . I want to make sure I am not going to be stimulating progesterone production and adding more progesterone by seed cycling. does it just balance it out regardless if you have access or too little of a certain hormone ? Thank you !

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Kristine,
      I found the other one – it was buried (weird!) So here’s that answer again. Hopefully one of them will get to you!
      Great questions! It isn’t common, but it’s also not unheard of to have some side effects when you start. Basically anything that begins to change hormones can cause a minor freak-out. 🙂 I have seen seed cycling be tremendously helpful for women with high progesterone as well as women with the more typical estrogen dominance. Listen to your body though – if you notice more migraines, or increasing symptoms then it’s probably not right for you. Good luck and keep me posted!

      Reply
  6. Kristine

    Hi Amy! So glad I found your site!! So a friend of mine recommended seed cycling , it has helped her immensely with bad pms. I just started this month and wondered a couple of things. First , is it common to have some side effects while your hormones are balancing ? I’ve had some spotting and a migraine (which I rarely get and are usually triggered by hormones .) I’m hoping that is just my body adjusting, too coincidental to not be I would think but wanted some reassurance! Secondly , I see a lot of info on balancing estrogen dominance and increasing progesterone with seed cycling , but I had my hormones tested and my estrogen was fine , it was my progesterone that was spiking up and down like crazy! So do I need to follow a different set of seeds or will this help balance the progesterone that’s already high. I don’t want it increased anymore than it is on its own, and worry since I’m the opposite of most (not estrogen dominate and not low progesterone ) that I could be doing it wrong and that’s why I’m having some side effects. Thanks in advance!
    Kristine

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Kristine,
      Great questions! It isn’t common, but it’s also not unheard of to have some side effects when you start. Basically anything that begins to change hormones can cause a minor freak-out. 🙂 I have seen seed cycling be tremendously helpful for women with high progesterone as well as women with the more typical estrogen dominance. Listen to your body though – if you notice more migraines, or increasing symptoms then it’s probably not right for you. Good luck and keep me posted!

      Reply
  7. whitney

    Hello,
    I’m about to try seed cycling and would like to get the maximum benefit with the additional supplements, but I’m allergic to fish oil. Could I use flax seed oil instead? If I just skip the fish oil but do the evening primrose in the second half, would that throw things out of balance?

    thanks!

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Whitney,
      I would think it would be best to just use the EPO for the second half of the cycle and skip the fish oil. Flax seed oil is great for some people, but some really don’t tolerate it well so it might just make things confusing. Does that make sense? Keep me posted!

      Reply
  8. Grace Hilbert

    Dr. Amy,
    If I ovulate on day 11 or 12 should I switch to sesame and sunflower or keep taking flax and pumpkin until day 14?
    Thanks for the information!
    Sincerely,
    Grace

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Grace,
      I’d try waiting until day 14. You’re pretty close, and this might help to move the ovulation closer to “ideal.” Is your cycle length normal?

      Reply
  9. Jackie

    Hi Dr. Amy,

    I’m really intrigued by this seed cycling. I’ve had bad hormonal cystic acne for most of my adult life and nothing I’ve tried has seemed to make any difference. I was on Alesse birth control for about 7 years, but that gave me some pretty severe digestive issues and probably made the skin problem worse. I’ve been off the BC for about 2 years now and been really good about diet (mostly paleo, no alcohol, sugar, caffeine, grains, dairy, or legumes), I’m addicted to exercise and I get good sleep usually between 10 pm and 6 am. Nevertheless, I’m still seeing severe cystic breakouts along my jawline that I’ve noticed occur around the full moon every month. I’ve also lost my cycle in the past year, probably due to stress, as I know I had adrenal fatigue and hormone imbalances from testing (hardly producing any estrogen). I’ve been trying to decrease stress and practice meditation and positive thinking, also been taking pregnenolone and dhea under the supervision of a functional medicine doctor for the past 4 months, but these are hard to get in Canada (I have to drive to the States to pick them up). Nothing seems to be bringing my cycle back or making the acne any better.

    I’m wondering if seed cycling would help and also whether I’d have to be careful of other seeds/nuts/fish I’m consuming at different times of the month. Also, would this be ok to do while continuing the pregnenolone + dhea? Lastly, should I start the seed cycling as soon as possible, or is it better to wait until the new moon?

    Thanks so much,
    Jackie

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Jackie,
      The cystic acne can be so hard – honestly I’ve seen a lot of women struggling with it after long-term birth control. Totally makes me wonder what the BCP is doing to us. Awesome about your diet and the changes you’ve made – it certainly sounds like you’re on the right track! It is safe to start the seed cycling while you’re using the pregnenolone and DHEA, although if you aren’t cycling the pregnenolone then talk with your functional medicine doc – it can sometimes suppress a normal cycle if it’s used continuously. If your cycle has been gone for a year I don’t think you need to wait until the new moon – just go ahead and start, but start according to the moon phase (so that you’ll switch seeds at the full and new moons). Does that make sense? Also it’s important to be careful of the particular seeds in the seed cycling protocol, but not so much of other seeds in your diet. Most seeds are hormone neutral, it’s mainly the flax, sesame, sunflower and pumpkin that push your hormones. I’ve heard some people say hemp does too (estrogenic) so maybe watch that one. Keep me posted – I’ll be excited to hear how it goes!

      Reply
  10. Tamar Harrington

    Are you still likely to see some benefit from eating roasted seeds? I could only find roasted at the grocery store. Also, I have really long follicular phases, which is one of the reasons I want to try seed cycling. Should I switch from eating flax and pumpkin seed to eating sesame and sunflower seed on/around Day 14 (when I want to ovulate) or after I actually ovulate? (I keep track of my ovulation through recording cervical fluid, basal body temperature, and cervical position, so I know–in retrospect–when it happens.)

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Raw seeds are best, but if you can’t find them then you’ll still get benefit from roasted. I would say switch the seeds around day 14 just to see if you can trigger a more even cycle. Do you know what day you typically ovulate on? Awesome that you’re keeping track so closely – it really helps when you know your body’s signals. Keep me posted!

      Reply
      1. Tamar Harrington

        Thanks for your response. My cycles have been varying all over the place the last several months. I used to ovulate pretty consistently, around day 20-27 or so, but lately it’s been much later–after day 30 and sometimes after day 40. Once I didn’t ovulate until about day 60. After I started seed cycling, I had one cycle when I ovulated around day 25, and I thought things were improving, but now I’m on day 31 of the next cycle and I don’t think I have ovulated yet. (It’s hard to tell because a number of things are throwing off my observations.)

        I had a couple more questions. Is it really necessary to grind all the different types of seeds? I have just been grinding the flax and sesame because it seems like the pumpkin and sunflower seeds are big enough and soft enough chewing them would have the same effect as grinding. Also, I see you say 1500 mg of fish oil is good, but I have 1200 mg capsules. Should I err on the side of more or stay as close to 1500 as possible with those size capsules? Also, how much EPO should I take each day in the luteal phase?

        Reply
  11. Karen Thompson

    Hi Dr Amy
    I started seed cycling because i had short cycles, heavy bleeding and needed antibiotics to control my hormonal skin breakouts. 4 months later and the heavy bleeding has reduced and I don’t need antibiotics for my skin. The second half of my cycles is still really short (i have pcos) and I’ve noticed that my skin is better in the first half than in the second. Do you think I need to tweak the seed amounts or take a supplement? Thanks. Karen.

    Reply
  12. Laura

    Hi Amy- This might be a long one for you. I’m a 32 year old who was diagnosed with hypothyroidism a year and a half ago. I was hoping that was the reason for my 10-14 days long periods that would come every 24 days. It sucks only have 10 days a month where you don’t have a period. On top of that I had soul crushing cramps for at least 1 day out of every cycle. I was going through an ultra tampon in an hour! I should have bought stock in those damn companies! I was hoping once I was treated for my hypothyroidism that everything would go back to normal. I was wrong. I finally went back to the doctor when I had enough of the bleeding and pain. She ended up doing an ultrasound and found some fibroids. Long story short I am now 7 weeks post op of having 17 fibroids removed and 2 orange sized cysts on BOTH ovaries. My TSH is not exactly stable yet but I just got results back that it’s currently at 2.63 which is great considering 6 weeks ago it was at 11.08. I’m telling you all this because I can’t wait to start trying this. I’m wondering if you have any tips or suggestions for me. I’m planning on taking the evening primrose and I’m currently already taking vitamin D3, a probiotic, I would like to add in a supplement for tart cherries and I’m on the fence about the fish oil. I do eat a lot of fish 2-3 times a week as is and I’m eating a lot of eggs with omega 3’s in them. Since I just ended my period and this is my first week going off birth control do you think I should wait until my first day of my next period to start this? Do you think I need the fish oil during the first phase? My goal for this is to try and regulate my hormones so that hopefully I don’t grow back these fibroids and hopefully now that I’m off birth control and free of those monsters an easier period is an added and much needed bonus. Right now since i’m still so close to being post op my last 2 periods have been horrendous. I’m a pretty healthy person. Try to eat organic, get at least 10,000 steps a day (obviously not right after my surgery but on average) I don’t eat fast food, I’m excited to start doing yoga and barre exercises again soon. But it just seems like my hormones are all out of whack! Any suggestions would be so appreciative. Thanks again for this great article and I’ll keep you posted on my outcome. I know it’s not a quick fix but anything natural that can help with all this is what i’m looking for!

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Holy moly. That’s a lot of fibroid! I’m so glad you got them removed and that you’re working on balancing thyroid – that will make a huge difference to how you feel on a day to day basis as well. I would say you can start with this cycle, but honestly when you’re both recovering from surgery AND adjusting your thyroid expect it to take a few extra months to really see what your new normal is. I would say do add the fish oil but only for half of the cycle so that there is a clear “cycle” between the fish oil and EPO. It may be overkill, but might as well over-do instead of under-do at this point because your hormones have obviously been a little out-of-whack for a while. I’m so excited to hear how it all goes for you! Please do keep me posted if you have time.

      Reply
  13. Yadhavi

    Thank you for this informative post on Seed cycling. Can you please confirm on whether the pumpkin seeds have to be skinless or can be had with the skin?

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Yadhavi,
      The tablespoon measurement is for the skinless pumpkin seeds (so the green inside part). If you use the whole seeds with the white skins on then you will need a higher dose because the white skins take up a lot of room. They have great fiber though and are very healthy! I would guess it would be about 3 tablespoons, but that is just a guess. 🙂

      Reply
  14. Monique

    Hi Amy,
    Is it possible for women(Im a mother of three) of 44 with regular cycles ,but with very heavy periods and bad pms, to have PCOS???

    So Im going to test for cortisol and adrogyn levels on the 21 day of my cycle of 26 days. While Im at it Im curious to know what my estrogen and progesterone levels are. Can I test progesterone on the same day as the adrogyn levels (21st)( cause I don’t know precisely when I ovulate)?

    And Im going to give the Magnesium a try. Should I take this whith calcium (I don’t eat dairy). At what dose? I hesitate a bit because magnesium promotes the making of hormones, including testosteron. And I guess I have a bit too much of that floating around in my body.

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Monique,
      It is possible. PCOS can be genetic or induced by insulin resistance or most frequently a combination of both. While the stereotypical case is someone who has always had irregular periods and fertility trouble, I’ve seen plenty of women who have it who had regular periods and kids. Crazy, right? I think this is why there are so many undiagnosed cases of PCOS. You can test all the hormones on the same day, and typically if you aren’t sure when you ovulate we try to go for day 3 or day 21. The calcium magnesium combo is actually really helpful for hormone balance in a lot of ways. It’s true it can give a bit of a boost to all the hormones, but it also helps detoxify hormones so I wouldn’t worry too much about it pushing the testosterone levels up. I’d look for a product that has equal amounts of calcium and magnesium. Let me know what happens – I’ll be curious to hear what they find. 🙂

      Reply
  15. lyss

    Okay, so I am new to seed cycling, but am giving it a try. I’m tired of pms and awful cramps. Figured this is worth a try! Can you clarify the amount of seeds to be consumed each day? I just ground my flax and pumpkin seeds in a coffee grinder. 1 T. of each made about 4 T. of fluffy powder. So my question is, do I measure before or after grinding? And if after, do I measure it fluffy or packed down? Thanks!

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Lyss,
      Great question! I measure before grinding and then just use all of it, however big it gets. I’ll be excited to hear how it goes for you! If you have a chance let me know. 🙂

      Reply
  16. leigh

    Your site has been so helpful for me!! I have an interesting sitauton:

    So, I have been seed cycling for several months due to heavy periods, shorter cycles and hair loss/thinning. My cycles have been gradually lengthening and my periods have remained heavy but shorter in duration..so I was going in the right direction. Only thing that had not changed much was my hair loss/thinning. I noticed a slight decrease in fall out but definitely still growing in very think and not growing much at all as far as length..which I was told was likely dht issues.

    I found out the hair loss/thinning was due to two issues: low iron and dht. The low iron is being addressed with an iron supplement and that seems to be helping my energy. But my dermatologist (who discovered the dht) wanted me to get on rogaine and finasteride…which both did not sound like good options! So, I decided to look elsewhere and saw your post to another lady about using saw palmetto and zinc for this. So, I decided to try this and started taking the saw palmetto/pumpkin oil supplement just about a week ago on about day 15 of my cycle. So far, I love this supplement because it seems to increase my energy. But the strange thing is that my period has now suddenly started early…on day 22..so it seems I have gone backwards in that respect. Could this have been caused by the saw/pumpkin supplement..even though I was only on it for about a week? And on that note, how would I incorporate saw pal/pumpkin oil supplement to the seed cycling?

    I’m currently doing: Day 1-15 pumpkin seeds and flax seeds–plus fish oil…. and day 15-period sunflower and sesame seeds–plus evening primrose oil.

    Any other suggestions regarding the saw pal and pumpkin oil supplement, let me know.

    Reply
    1. leigh

      Oh..sorry I misspelled something! I meant to say that the hair loss itself has improved a tiny bit but the overall growth and extreme thinness of the hair itself is a problem and that is the dht part, I believe, and that has not improved at all..which is what led me to the saw pal.

      Reply
      1. amyneuzil Post author

        Yes! Got it. I just thought of it, but apparently castor oil on your scalp a couple of nights per week will help too – it stimulates hair growth and helps to detoxify the follicles. A lot of people use it for eyebrow and eyelash thinning, but it can help for head hair as well. Just put an old towel over your pillow because the castor oil is heavy and will stain. It will take a couple of rounds of shampoo to wash it out of your hair, but I’m guessing your hair will be awesome after so many oil treatments. If you try it let me know how it goes for you!

        Reply
    2. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Leigh,
      Wow – great questions! I’m glad you started the saw palmetto and pumpkin oil. I honestly don’t know if it could have caused the early cycle, but it makes sense that it might. I think I’d just do it continuously through your cycle and give your body a couple of months to balance out. I don’t think it will have a permanent effect on cycle length, it was probably just a weird little adjustment. I think you’re totally on the right track. Keep me posted!

      Reply
  17. Monique

    Thank you so much for your quick reply! I really gives me some direction to look for!
    I think Im not menopausal, but I do suffer from stress. And I think the stress also gave me melasma. The last five years were very very stressful and although I meditate that might not be enough. So I think its a good idea to have some bloodwork done to find out if my adrenal glands work overtime androgenwise. What is the name of the test I can ask my doctor for? Cortisol? Ive heard that magnesium can be helpful in stressful times.
    And the good testosteron to bad DHT-link is also something to investigate further. Is there a specific bloodtest I can ask for?
    What is a good time in your cycle to test androgenlevels if you don’t know precisely when your ovulation starts?
    By the way: Im just reading a little bit into Zinc , the supplement you’ve mentioned. Its a little confusing though as its used as androgenblocker but also as a testosteronbooster?? I read the same thing about magnesium, so this makes me a bit hesistant…..
    Thank you so much! On my way to healthy hormones and a fuzzyfree life!

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Monique,
      So – if you’ve got some melasma it means your blood sugars are probably off a little bit too (which can go with stress and high cortisol, but can also be a sign of PCOS along with the facial hair.) Here’s more info on PCOS, and in terms of testing cortisol, it’s just a cortisol test. No fancy name. It could be a good idea to have your actual testosterone tested too, and if it’s actually high then do follow-up testing for PCOS. If you’re not sure about ovulation then go with either Day 3 or day 21. They’re both in kind of neutral territory and so androgen levels should be reasonably “average” for you. Yes – so zinc is a double-edged sword for testosterone. It does help boost production in men, but less so in women. It also helps the testosterone that’s already there not to be converted to DHT (in both men and women). Magnesium is less strong, but so many women are deficient that honestly I think we should all be taking it by the handfull. Ha! okay – so this was kind of disorganized, if it doesn’t make sense just shoot another question my way. 🙂

      Reply
  18. Monique

    Hi Dr. Amy,

    Im 44 years old and suffer from heavy periods and bad pms. And I have some hairy issues..that is: the peach fuzzy hair on my upperlip is slowly turning into ..well..something less peach fuzzy. (although no corse hairs). My cycles are regular but since two years shorter: from 28 to 24 days.
    I think Im probably perimenopausal (exess estrogen, low in progesterone), so I dediced to give seed cycling a go for three months. I also used supplements: omega 3 in the first part and primrose oil in the second. And it worked great!!! It actually lengthed my cycle with 2 days and my pms symptoms were almost gone. Yay!!Only…the hair on my face started to grow!!!
    So my question: is there any (hormonal) explanation for this??
    Thank you so much!

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Monique,
      Okay – AWESOME about your cycle length and the PMS. YAY! Less awesome about the peach fuzz. I honestly don’t know for sure, but as usual I have theories… One thing that I have seen in my practice is that women going into the menopausal transition with higher stress levels also seem to have higher levels of androgens (the male sex hormones). Some of the androgens in women are produced by the adrenal glands and they’re responsible for handling stress so maybe that’s the link? Or possibly as your natural hormones are rising some of the good testosterone is being converted to DHT? (which is the not so good form of testosterone for women). If that’s happening then the best thing to do is find a good prostate supplement. I know that sounds a little crazy because you don’t have a prostate, but Saw palmetto and zinc (which are in most prostate supplements) are also really good at blocking that conversion and they may help out. So – keep me posted?

      Reply
  19. Megan

    Hi Amy,

    I want to try seed cycling, but I am on a seasonal birth control. Would I be able to do it even though I only have 4 periods a year?

    My libido is basically 0! Please help!

    Megan

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Megan,
      Great question and honestly I don’t know the answer. I do think the seeds could help balance libido, but what I don’t know is if they will interfere with the action of the birth control because technically you’re suppressing your cycle most months. Hmmm. So – unfortunately there isn’t any research on whether or not it interferes. That means it might be helpful, but the level of actual fertility control might also decrease. Let me know what you end up doing and how it goes – I’d love to hear.

      Reply
  20. Bonnie

    Hi Amy!! I really appreciate your website and all the information that you have provided. I am new to seed cycling and I just started 2 days ago. My menstrual cycle is regular (usually every 28 days), but sometimes can be early/late by a day or 2 (stress usually plays a large role in this). This month I am 3 days early. I usually have lots of PMS symptoms: headaches, bad cramps, sore breasts, acne, excessive sweating, my hair seems to shed a lot, etc. Over the years, I’ve also had low adrenal function. I also have low thyroid, so I am taking dessicated thyroid supplements. I am wondering if it is safe to do seed cycling when taking thyroid pills? Will seed cycling affect my thyroid? Do I need to take the fish oils or can I do without?

    My husband is also wanting to try seed cycling – is it safe for men? Or are there any adverse side affects? I don’t see a lot of information out there for men on this topic. I would appreciate your insights about this.

    Thanks in advance 🙂

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Bonnie,
      Great questions!

      I think the seeds will help so much with the PMS symptoms – please let me know how it goes for you. It is safe to do the seed cycling while you’re taking thyroid medications or supplements, but like everything else it’s best to space them out. Having anything in your stomach at the same time as the thyroid medications might interfere with absorption, so please take the seeds and the desiccated thyroid at different times of day. You don’t need to take the fish oils or EPO and generally I suggest starting without them to see how your body does. It’s just an extra kick to the protocol if you need it.

      For your husband – absolutely seed cycling is safe for men and although I haven’t seen any research on the subject, clinically it seems like it also boosts male fertility. Although that might just be that when partners are doing it together they usually get on the same cycle, which means that everyone is most fertile at just the right time. 🙂

      Reply
  21. Karen Thompson

    Hi Dr Amy.
    I’m at the end of my second month of seed cycling. I go the full 14 days before i ovulate and its obv by the amount and type of cervical mucous that I’m ovulating (sorry tmi). My sesame/sunflower phase only lasts 8 days though before I get my period. Will it take a while to lengthen? Polycystic ovaries were found when i had fertility treatment for my 2 children so don’t know if the seeds can help really?
    Kind regards
    Karen

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Karen,
      No worries – it’s never TMI. 🙂 Awesome that you’re getting good ovulation signs! Yes – that short luteal phase is really common among women with estrogen-dominant type disorders (like PCOS or endometriosis). It will take a while to lengthen. This is a slow, nourishing way to balance hormones, not a quick aggressive push so really balance could take a year or more of slow adjustment. In good news the seeds are yummy and there aren’t any pills to take so it’s all pretty good. There are a number of other things that can help specifically with PCOS and a blog post about it is on the upcoming list so keep an eye out for it!

      Reply
  22. Pingback: Black Pine Holistic Healing What can you do about an irregular period? Actually, quite a bit....

  23. Meme

    Hi Dr. Amy, there is a ton of wonderful information on your page. I started seed cycling in November 2016 as a suggestion from my gyn to help with some potential hormonal issues I was having (PMS, moodiness, hair loss, etc.). My cycle was pretty much aligned with the lunar cycle, which I didn’t notice until I started researching seed cycling. Anyway I was always a 28-30 day cycle. I started the seeds on day 1 of my cycle and switched at the full moon then got my period a week early so I was confused and thought I messed something up so I stopped taking seeds. I had a normal cycle 3-4 days. Well it’s now 2 weeks later and I am still spotting every so often maybe every 2 -3 days. I felt better while I was taking the seeds, can I restart at the new moon or should I wait until my period comes back? Also, is it normal for your first month on seeds to get your cycle a lot earlier? Thank you!

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Meme,
      Not normal for your cycle to get earlier, but sometimes if you’re especially hormone sensitive it can be a little strange or off for a few months while your body adjusts. I’d say start again at the new moon! Let me know how it goes and if things continue to be odd then maybe decrease the amounts a bit – some people really do just respond more strongly than average.

      Reply
  24. Denise Jones

    When I started seed cycling, I was the pepitas (which are the INSIDE of the pumpkin seed – and are sort of green) that you buy in a food store. Should I be using the WHOLE pumpkin seed (which is what you’d find inside of the pumpkin) where it still is IN the shell? Recently, I started roasting pumpkins and saving the WHOLE seeds. I coat them with coconut oil, honey, cinnamon, and salt . Then I eat them. I find them much more tasty than just the pepitas. Just wondering which ones to use since I don’t know where the nutritional value comes from for the hormonal balancing. The seed or the shell. Thanks for any info on this!

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Denise,
      Such a great question! I think the whole pumpkin seed is probably better, but most of the literature is referring to just the inner pepita. My thoughts would be that if you do the whole seed (which is bigger and takes up more space) then increase the amount – maybe even double it. The zinc is in the pepita part (As far as I’m aware), but I think the fiber from the outer shell is probably incredibly beneficial too. I hope this helps!

      Reply
  25. Katie

    Amy,
    First off I love the seed cycling. I have been doing this for the past 6 months and it has works tremendously! I am very pleased with the results. However I just found out that I have food sensitively/allergies to the flax and pumpkin seeds so I was wondering if there are other seeds to replace those that will have the same affect.
    Thanks!

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Katie,
      Isn’t it great! I love the seed cycling too. Such a nourishing way to encourage hormone balance. Such a bummer about the flax and pumpkin seed although talk with whoever did the food sensitivity testing – sometimes if your system is inflamed or reactive then whatever you eat on a regular basis will show up as positive just because your body is over-reactive. If they really are problems then what we’re looking for mostly from he flax seeds are lignins. Unfortunately the next highest source that I know of are the sesame seeds, so potentially use twice the amount of sesame instead of flax (because it’s not as lignin-rich). Do you know if you’re sensitive to squash seeds? Raw squash seeds can be a good substitute for the pumpkin although they’re harder to find. You might have to actually just buy squash and harvest your own. I’ve never tried them raw, but they’re nice if you toast them like pumpkin seeds. It’s not a perfect solution, but it’ll be close! If you have a chance please let me know how it goes – I’m always curious about the alternative seeds, especially since you’ve been doing it with the conventional seeds for a while and know how it goes.

      Reply
  26. Karen Thompson

    Hi Amy, not sure if you’re away or if my question on 28nov didn’t post properly?? I also wanted to say that i take a low strength antibiotic for my skin which i am still taking alongside the seeds ( my skin is still recovering from when i stopped taking them!) and do you think the antibiotic will affect the seed cycling? I thought i could take both for the first few months while my body adjusts? Thanks. Karen.

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Karen,
      I’m so sorry about that – sometimes questions slip through the cracks from people who have posted before because they don’t show up as new. Apologies! I’ll search around for it and see if I can find the question again. As for the antibiotic, it’s hard to say. Antibiotics certainly can affect estrogen and progesterone levels, in part because they are metabolized in the liver and so are the hormones so there can be an interaction there. Also at the digestive level – antibiotics can strongly impact your gut flora, which can change the way hormones are reabsorbed or excreted from your gut. So I would say the antibiotic may have in impact on your cycle, but I think the significance of that impact would depend on your individual body and how good your liver function is along wth the strength of your gut flora. Does that make sense?

      Reply
  27. Jen

    Hello,
    I just started seed cycing (almost 1 month now). I started towards the end of my luteal phase with the sesame and sunflower seeds. Then once my peirod came (exactly on the day of the full moon- i have the opposite cycle: full moon is my period and new moon ovulate) i swtiched to the pumpkin and flax seeds. I have also been taking the fish oil and evpo as directed. I ovulated on day 12 of my cycle (i track my temp and CF), but now on day 13 i suddenly had a flow like that of my period (a med/lighter day). I’ve had spotting before during ovulation, and this is NOT anything like that- it’s much heavier. I also has some period like symptoms today. I havent taken any seeds today, because im not sure if i should take the flax or sesame as i had expected to start doing…. Is my body now trying to change to the moon phases? Meaning, should i take the sesame/sunflower or keep taking pumpkin/flax? Since im not sure, i will wait and see if tmw (or the next few days) my period comes or not. I do know that in the past 6 months+ i have had low temps mid luteal phase with 3 days of spotting before my period- which i assume is a low progestron problem. Thats why i came across seed cycling and wanted to try and see if it helps. Any comments on what could be happening?

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Jen,
      Wow – I’m so excited to see someone so in tune with their body and cycle. My guess would be that since your hormones are pretty predictable and balanced that the pumpkin/flax combo might be too strong for you – or at least push you to switch to the actual moon phase (which would be super interesting). There’s all sorts of remarkable theories about women who ovulate on the new moon – it’s so fascinating. So I’d say because your hormones are responsive, you could be switching and the flax/pumpkin actually lowered your estrogen enough for a true period. If it’s not a true period it could be that instead of a good ovulation a small cyst burst a bled a little. That can sometimes happen and it typically isn’t anything to be alarmed about unless the bleeding is severe. If it is actually a period then switch seeds. If it isn’t then carry on as normal but possibly next month use a smaller dose (a teaspoon each?) of the flax and pumpkin seeds. Let me know how it all goes!

      Reply
  28. Menley

    Hi Amy,

    I know how busy you must be and I’m so grateful to see you are answering questions. My question wasn’t answered and it was awhile back so I thought I’d try again.

    If my goal is to lengthen my cycle back to it’s original length of 30 days (it’s currently about 24 with heavy periods).

    For the past few months, I have seed cycling religiously, as you recommend) and I make the progesterone support switch to Sunflowers and sesame seeds at day 16. So far, my cycle length and heavy periods have not changed. However, I am feeling much better emotionally and not having as many night sweats..so something is happening! I have been anemic in the past (taking iron now) and would like to really tackle the heavy periods especially.

    Anything I should be doing differently? Should I extend one of the seed cycles? Thank you so much for your time:)

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Menley,
      So sorry for not getting back to you! Occasionally a post slips through the cracks, I’ll try to watch more closely. To start, let’s actually try to move the switch back to day 12 or 13. I want to see if we can lengthen the luteal phase and boost that progesterone level a bit. I do think you’re on the right track because the mood changes and lightening up of the night sweats is awesome! We’ll just try tweaking it a bit and see if this helps. Give it a couple of months with an earlier switch and keep me posted! Again I’m so sorry that I missed a question. 🙂

      Reply
  29. Karen Thompson

    Hi Amy
    I have my seeds at breakfast. If i have eggs or toast or something i can’t sprinkle the ground seeds in, i make a smoothie with the seeds mixed with skimmed milk, oats and banana. Is that ok? I read that dairy isn’t good for hormone balance so don’t want to be taking the seeds with the wrong thing!
    Thanks. Karen.

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Karen,
      I found it! I had a few questions that got away from me. Argh! Smoothie with the seeds is fantastic. Dairy can be a concern because of the hormones they use on cows (scary) and also if you personally have a dairy sensitivity (if you’re interested in testing here’s a post on it) If you make the effort to get organic milk then the hormones in the cows should all be the hormones they’re born with, so hopefully that won’t be a big deal. As for the food sensitivity – dairy most often shows up as digestive disturbance or skin trouble so if you are having those issues it might be worth testing yourself. Also if you’re really concerned you can always switch over to rice or almond milk (but not soy – that one does certainly have strong hormone effects.) Keep me posted – especially if you do actually test dairy!

      Reply
      1. Karen Thompson

        Thanks Amy, i do have organic milk so that’s good. I prob should test for dairy intolerance, just dont want to give up my latte’s! Kind regards, Karen.

        Reply
        1. amyneuzil Post author

          Haha!
          I *totally* know how you feel about lattes. I was so scared when I did my dairy challenge – mostly because of my morning coffee (but partly because of cheese). Thank god it all worked out. 🙂 Although ironically I ended up switching during my dairy elimination to almond milk in my coffee and now I actually like that better (even best is a combo of almond milk and heavy cream. Yummm.)

          Reply
      2. Karen Thompson

        Hi Dr Amy
        I started seed cycling because i had short cycles, heavy bleeding and needed antibiotics to control my hormonal skin breakouts. 4 months later and the heavy bleeding has reduced and I don’t need antibiotics for my skin. The second half of my cycles is still really short (i have pcos) and I’ve noticed that my skin is better in the first half than in the second. Do you think I need to tweak the seed amounts or take a supplement? Thanks. Karen.

        Reply

        Reply
  30. April Smiley

    I’m in my second month already and now I’m spotting a week before period with bloating and cramps and during my supposed period except never really bleeding heavy like normal. On day 15 now and still spotting then not then spotting . Any idea what is going on with my body?

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi April,
      So – just spotting off and on with no clear cycle or flow? What was your cycle like before you started seed cycling? No idea what is going on without knowing how things looked before… More info please!

      Reply
      1. April Smiley

        My cycle was pretty regular before every 30 days then this year my period started working out starting anywhere between 25 to 28 days and sometimes I would have two periods a month so I started the seed cycling in September.I have also had endometriosis and surgery for it twice.

        Reply
        1. amyneuzil Post author

          Hmmm. Honestly with the history of endometriosis I think it’s important for you to follow up with your GYN to make sure there isn’t any issue with that. Also with unusual spotting and bloating we always want to rule out any scarier changes like ovarian cancer (not that I think it’s a strong possibility, but I still don’t want you to ignore it just in case!) I don’t really know what is going on, but I have a theory. Given a history of endometriosis, you have probably had higher than average estrogens for most of your life. I am guessing (although it’s just a guess) that the seeds are bringing those levels down farther than your body knows what to do with and so it’s constantly on the verge of a period because the estrogens are so much lower than normal. Does that make sense? Maybe try decreasing to a teaspoon of each seed and see if that helps. If your body responds a bit better then once things normalize we could try slowly increasing. Give it a shot and keep me posted – I’d love to hear how it goes!

          Reply
  31. Melanie Ann

    Sorry everyone that posted in the wrong order, here’s the intended order…

    Dr. Amy,

    I think my previous questions that I posted got missed, as I know you are always so gracious at getting back to us in a few days, reposting my questions below wishing you a very Happy Thanksgiving as we are all thankful for your guidance…

    I know out of the four seeds to try not to add them in other times as snacks because it makes things confusing, what about other nuts or seeds that you never cycle, for instance caraway seeds and it’s not really a nut but almonds are they ok anytime of the month!?

    I also understand to ground fresh every day or two just because the oils in the seeds can go rancid if they’re ground for too long, how do you feel about doing this but then having some residual in the grinder yet at least it’s sealed closed in the pantry and just wiping clean before switching to the next 14 days rather then cleaning everyday!?

    Please & Thanks!!

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Melanie Ann,
      I’m so sorry for missing the original post! I went back through and found three this month that fell through the cracks. Argh! Okay – so as for other nuts and seeds as long as they don’t have a known hormone effect they should be fine. As far as I know caraway seeds, chia seeds, fennel seeds, celery seeds, almonds, hazelnuts, walnuts, pecans and brazil nuts should all be reasonably hormone neutral (that isn’t a complete list – it’s just the ones I can think of off the top of my head). With the grinder I think wiping it clean is absolutely fine but if you notice any oily smell or residue then give it a good clean and start again. 🙂

      Reply
  32. Melanie Ann

    I know out of the four seeds to try not to add them in other times as snacks because it makes things confusing, what about other nuts or seeds that you never cycle, for instance caraway seeds and it’s not really a nut but almonds are they ok anytime of the month!?

    Dr. Amy,

    I think my previous questions that I posted got missed, as I know you are always so gracious at getting back to us in a few days, reposting my questions below wishing you a very Happy Thanksgiving as we are all thankful for your guidance…

    I also understand to ground fresh every day or two just because the oils in the seeds can go rancid if they’re ground for too long, how do you feel about doing this but then having some residual in the grinder yet at least it’s sealed closed in the pantry and just wiping clean before switching to the next 14 days rather then cleaning everyday!? Please & Thanks!!

    Reply
  33. Savannah

    Such an interesting article! I suffer from low estrogen and as a result haven’t had a period in 3 years. Would eating lignans that eliminate estrogen be beneficial if I am aiming to increase levels? Would it be better for me to eat seeds that are high in estrogen during the follicular phase instead?
    Thank you so much!!!

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Savannah,
      Hmmm. So – honestly I think it would make a difference why your estrogen is low. Just to clarify the lignans help your body to eliminate the more potent forms of estrogen and restore balance, and sometimes estrogen is functionally low but actually high in the body and just being converted to other things (like testosterone in PCOS) because the body is trying to get rid of it. I’m not sure if that clarified anything, but honestly I think the seeds are gentle and nutritive enough that it’s kind of a no-harm option to try. If you don’t feel well with it then stop, but it could be helpful. I’d love to hear how it goes and just remember with no cycle in 3 years, it may take a few months before you see any kind of changes so hang in there and as long as you feel well, keep trying. Keep me posted!

      Reply
  34. Karen Thompson

    Hi Amy, another question please! Is it 1tbsp of ground seeds or 1tbsp of whole seeds and then grind them? Thanks. Karen.

    Reply
  35. Karen Thompson

    Hi Amy
    I’ve just stumbled across seed cycling while googling hormonal acne as i have constant flare ups due to pcos. It looks really exciting and I’m going to start it next week on day1 of my cycle. Are you based in the US? I am in the UK and i just wondered where the cheapest place to get the seeds was and also if it’s best to buy them whole or ground? Also some seeds are labelled ‘hulled’, are these still ok?
    Many thanks. Karen.

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Karen,
      So glad you found me! I’m eager to hear how it all goes for you. Honestly I get mine at a bulk food store (I’m in Canada). I typically buy most of them whole, but the flax seeds I’m buying ground because the sound of a coffee grinder seriously freaks my daughter out. Ha! Go figure. If you do buy ground flax seed just be sure to smell them, as flax oil goes rancid if the seeds aren’t properly handled. I’ve only ever had trouble once buying a pre-packaged ground flax seed that I think must have been stored improperly, but typically it’s fine. The sesame seeds will probably be hulled and that’s a good thing, and honestly I think the pumpkin seeds are typically hulled too although often they don’t label it. Flax seeds shouldn’t be hulled and sesame I’ve seen it called “hulled” and “unhulled” although I can’t actually perceive the difference between the two. Good luck and keep me posted!

      Reply
  36. Kerry

    Hi!

    So glad I found this! I’ve developed absolutely horrific period symptoms over the past year or so to the point where I can’t work because it’s so painful, and my skin has gone so bad which is really embarrasing at 26 years old. My functional doctor told me about seed cycling because I’m adamant about staying away from synthetic hormones. You’re post makes it very clear about why it’s beneficial and how to go about it. I just want to know, can you add in extras of the seeds your cycling in a day? For example, I’m on the flax/pumpkin seed days and I make my own pizza basses (gluten & dairy free diet) which needs a tablespoon of flax. Is it okay to have more of the flax even though I’ve already had my 1 tbsp of them today? Thank you 🙂

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Kerry,
      Great question!
      Yes – honestly I think it’s all pretty flexible. I was very strict with it when I first started out, and that worked great, but I’m finding with time that it continues to work even if the amounts change a little bit day to day or if I’m using seeds in my foods and that sort of thing. I think the biggest thing is not to end up using more of the seeds from the other part of the cycle in the wrong time of the month (if that makes sense). Great luck and keep me posted!

      Reply
  37. Leigh

    I’m so grateful to have found this info! Thank you so much:)

    I was wondering what to do in my case. I have been seed cycling for two months. My goal is to increase my cycle back to the 28-30 days it used to be after falling to 22-24 days the past year or so…plus heavy bleeding. After two months, my mood is much improved! But my period just started again at day 24. So, do I continue the sesame and sunflower seeds until day 28 or 30 (even though I started bleeding)…OR do I just hop back on the flaxseeds/pumpkin seeds as I have been the past two months?

    Reply
  38. Melanie Ann

    I know out of the four seeds to try not to add them in other times as snacks because it makes things confusing, what about other nuts or seeds that you never cycle, for instance caraway seeds and it’s not really a nut but almonds are they ok anytime of the month!?

    I also understand to ground fresh every day or two just because the oils in the seeds can go rancid if they’re ground for too long, how do you feel about doing this but then having some residual in the grinder yet at least it’s sealed closed in the pantry and just wiping clean before switching to the next 14 days rather then cleaning everyday!? Please & Thanks!!

    Reply
  39. Carrie

    Hello,

    I’ve been doing some research into seed cycling and ordered the seeds from thrivemarket last night. I just came across your post that mentioned to grind the seeds daily. I purchased already ground flax seed, but the rest are whole. My question is, can I keep the flax in the fridge to extend the shelf life of the oils? Thanks!

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Yes! Ironically I’ve switched to doing this too because my daughter *hates* the noise the blender makes grinding them. Ha! So I either do big batches and keep them in the fridge, or just buy them ground. Go figure.

      Reply
  40. Melissa

    I really do appreciate your post. So happy to have found you. I am on week four of seed cycling. My periods have been dwindling for the last two years. I ate a salad a few weeks ago topped with pumpkin seeds…and whoa. I had a healthy period for about 4 days. I had heard of seeds cycling over the years, but stayed away as I thought I had allergies. I was so impressed by salad that I started the seed cycle immediately.
    If I may ask a question, I am approaching day 27. By day 29, if I have not started my period again, do I start eating pumpkin/flax seeds anyway and continue for 14 days? Due I essentially put myself on a 28 day cycle? Or do I keep eating sesame/sunflower seeds until I begin my period? I do have another question. If I want to try to align my cycle with the moon phases, does my cycle become a 30-day, 31-day, 28-day cycle depending on the length of the month?(that is how long the moon cycles are, right?) Thank you a million times for your insightful response.–Melissa

    Reply
    1. Melissa

      Amy,
      I found the answers to my questions in older post, I think. I will establish a 28 day cycle and wait for my body to follow.
      If I may ask. Does it matter if sesame seeds are hulled or unhullled? Also, does it matter if I start with whole flax seeds, or can I buy pre-ground flax in a bag?
      Thank you for your information. Melissa

      Reply
      1. Melissa

        Amy,
        I have another question. Should I limit consumption of wild caught salmon to Phase II only? I eat it at least 1-2 times a week. Could this be interfering with my Phase II? Thank you for your information.

        Reply
        1. Melissa

          Amy,
          I have a question about seed cycling for men. My husband had been taking a fish oil supplement daily. Should he limit the fish oil supplement to his Phase II only(when he is eating pumpkin/flax seed)? Is it fine to continue daily fish oil supplements throughout the male seed cycle?

          Reply
          1. amyneuzil Post author

            Hi Melissa,
            Fish oil is so helpful for men (and all of us really) for inflammation that I honestly would continue it through the whole month. The seed cycling helps men with fertility cycles and hormone balance, but in a much more subtle way than women, so yes I would continue to use the fish oil throughout the whole month. Great questions!

        2. Melissa

          I apologize. I made a mistake in my above question.
          Should I limit consumption of wild caught salmon to Phase II only? I eat it at least 1-2 times a week. Could this be interfering with my –Phase I—? Thank you for your information.

          Reply
        3. amyneuzil Post author

          Hi Melissa,
          No – I think the good fish oils from the salmon are fine in whatever phase and 1- 2 servings per week will add beneficial omega_3s but shouldn’t upset the balance.

          Reply
      2. amyneuzil Post author

        Perfect! I’m so excited to see how all of this goes for you given your amazing reaction to the pumpkin seeds. As far as I know the sesame seeds should be fine either way – I think it comes down mostly to personal preference. The unhulled would have more fiber, which can be good, but I don’t think it would change the seed cycling significantly. And honestly about the flax, I used to be a “purist” and say only the whole flax seed that you grind yourself, but now for convenience I buy it pre-ground and just store it in the fridge. Make sure you smell it though – the risk with flax seed is that it goes rancid quickly, but the rancid oils smell really bad so you would know. Can’t wait to hear how it goes!

        Reply
    2. Melissa

      Hi Amy,
      I understand the moon phases cycling now. I read a few other posts here. I will nudge myself toward seed cycling with the lunar phases. Thank you for great information.

      Reply
  41. Cristina

    Hi Amy,

    I looked through some comments but didn’t see this question:

    If I have long periods, do I wait to switch back to flax/ pumpkin until my period comes? Or continue with sesame/ sunflower? I am.on the third month of seed cycling and had been following the phases of the Moon.

    It was just the new moon so I went back to flax/ pumpkin but am not supposed to get my period for another week so I am confused. It seems I am getting farther out of sink with how my cycle works.

    Then once you get your period, do you count 14 days from then or from day 1 of changing back to flax/ pumpkin?

    Thanks for any insight!!

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Christina,
      If you’ve tried for three months following the moon or a traditional 28-29 day cycle and it isn’t helping then I’d actually follow your cycle averages. So instead of doing each phase for 14 days, stretch it out so that each phase is 17 days to match your actual cycle and see how that does for you. Even better is if you track ovulation and can switch when you actually ovulate. Some women can tell easily when they’re ovulating and some can’t so do what works best for you. I’d love to hear how this goes so keep me posted if you get a chance.

      Reply
      1. Hanna

        Hello Amy, Im actually trying to get this right , i think i have long cycles so I have been tracing my cicles with a phone app, I was supposed to start my menses so I changed the seeds i have not started bleeding jet after 4 days (no chance of being pregnant), could changing the seed before you actually start , delay it?

        Reply
        1. amyneuzil Post author

          Hi Hanna,
          Great question and honestly I think the answer is a little different for everyone. It seems like for people who often have ultra-long cycles or skip cycles (like PCOS or perimenopause) the best thing is to switch the seeds regularly even if you’re not getting your period. For women who have minor irregularity but not like that it often helps to actually follow your actual ovulation and period for a few months and then shorten slowly (so you’re starting out with your cycle and then slowly adjusting your cycle to the more optimum length.) Does that make sense? Honestly that is just observation, so if you try it one way for a few months and aren’t satisfied with the results, then try it the other way. It’s very flexible and every woman’s body is different so the best thing is always to listen to your own body. I hope this helps and keep me posted!

          Reply
  42. Nia

    Hello Dr. Amy, I’ve tried seed cycling and I notice that I feel better with the pumpkin- flax period than the sesame-sunflower period. I have endometriosis, recently diagnosed with PCOS, and have pretty severe pms. Can I take the pumpkin-flax mixture through the month, even when I take the sesame-sunflower? Or just do the pumpkin flax alone? What do you suggest? Many thanks!

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Good question Nia,
      Honestly with endometriosis, PCOS and PMS it’s pretty clear that you’re on estrogen overload so your body is probably really looking for the estrogen detox that the pumpkin-flax is providing. I do think it would be worth trying to keep those two constantly to help support estrogen detox and just add the sesame-sunflower at the appropriate times during your cycle. Seed cycling is great because it really is so flexible -these are nutrients and so you can change it up however your body needs. Keep me posted on how this does for you – I’ll be really excited to hear.

      Reply
  43. leigh

    Hello! I’m 48 and started seed cycling this month (about 12 days ago). I’ve been having months of shortening cycles (30 days down to 22 or 25) and very heavy periods and mood swings. My naturopathic doc actually suggested I try this.

    I have been taking flax seeds religiously for the past 12 days but am actually noticing a lower mood and fuzzy head, so to speak. I feel more “estrogenish”, so to speak! Does this mean I shouldn’t take the flax seeds? Can it cause mood to be worse before it gets better? Not sure what to blame this change on but I don’t want to stop either. Have you heard of this happening at the beginning?

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Leigh,
      I have heard of it happening at first – especially when you start seed cycling in such a hugely hormonal time. Peri menopause is all over the place with the hormones and so there is a lot floating around to process. Sometimes by allowing your body to process some of that (like with the flax seeds your’e starting a gentle detox) your body gets really excited about dumping some of it and just goes crazy for a bit. It will all calm down – at least that would be my general guess, but of course if you find that next month you have the same reaction to the flax seeds then there might be something else going on. So I’d say ride it out for this cycle, and re-evalutate next cycle to see if it’s doing the same thing. Does that make sense?

      Reply
  44. Melanie Ann

    Dr. Amy, thank you for this info! I missed two periods in a row, due to what I believe was binge eating out of control disruption as I know all our hormones go hand in hand. I’ve done much better this month stabilizing my blood sugar with healthy balanced meals every 3-4 hours. I also incorporated in 2 T of just pumpkin seeds (can’t do flax seeds pyroluric) the first 14 or maybe 15 days and then been doing 1 T sunflower seeds and 1 T sesame seeds since, now being Day 36 with no period. I realize re-establishing the rhythms of your body takes time, just wondering how long to wait and see if I get a period or to switch back to pumpkin seeds!?

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Melanie Ann,
      Good question! So did you miss two and then have one? Or have you missed three total? Historically were you regular before that? My intuition says to switch back because I’m guessing you’re going to miss this one too (maybe keep the seeds on a 28 day cycle no matter what is happening and see if you can bring back some normal). Feel free to clarify though – I’m not sure I”ve got the picture straight. Keep me posted!

      Reply
      1. amyneuzil Post author

        Sadly Chia seeds don’t have the high lignan content that flax do. 🙁 They won’t do the same thing.

        Reply
  45. Amie

    Dr. Amy, I just completed radiation for ER+ breast cancer and am 1 year into post menopause. I was stage I, Oncotype 25 and had a lumpectomy. I opted out of Chemo as it was my call. Can the seed rotation benefit me moving forward to lower the bad estrogen? If so, do I start with the moon”s cycle since I no longer have a period cycle?

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Amie,
      Great question! So – of course check with your oncology team before you start anything, but the lignans in flax seeds are known to help reduce the estrogen burden. Here’s a link to a research paper (there is a free full text article, just click the link in the abstract) on it if your oncologists are unfamiliar. I have never seen a study on the effects on cancer of full seed cycling, so I hesitate to suggest that, but certainly the flax seeds!! I’d love to know what your oncologists have to say about it if you have the time to write back. I hope this helps!

      Reply
  46. Christine Mitchell

    Hi, Dr. Neuzil, I’ve been seed cycling for roughly one & a half cycles now based on your article, & I’m seeing some results – thank you so very much. And although I’ve been using organic Maca powder (i.e. in clean – smoothies, raw desserts, hot chocolate, & chocolate milk) over a year now, I’m wondering, based on some articles I’ve recently read, if its use could interfere with trying to achieve hormone balance through seed cycling? In other words, does the Maca powder interact with, throw off, or duplicate the seed cycling? If not & it is safe to do both simultaneously, what dosage do you recommend for the Maca, & is there a certain time in the cycle to use it (like there is for the seeds)?

    Reply
  47. Tara

    I am nearly 50 and in perimenopause. Until this started I was always very regular, but had painful periods. Now, I more commonly have 20/22 day cycles with an occasional 30 or 40 day cycle here and there. Should I seed cycle every 10/11 days or should I adjust to try to bring normalcy back to my cycle? If adjusting, how would I go about doing that? Thanks!

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Tara,
      So – in perimenopause when your cycle is really variable I would actually adjust to try to bring normalcy back. It doesn’t always actually bring normalcy because your cycle is winding down, but it certainly helps to make things easier. Some women choose to just follow the moon and forget what their cycle is actually doing and some women just start on day 1 of their cycle and do the seed cycle as though it was a 27-29 day cycle (whatever was most typical for them) even if it’s shorter. The seeds and your actual flow won’t always match up – especially the first few months, but the hope is that more and more they will match up. You’ll probably start skipping cycles as well, which is also normal, but hopefully eventually when they do come they’ll match up with the seed cycling and be easy periods. Does that make sense?

      Reply
  48. June Stuebs-Prochaska

    I’ve been seed cycling for 2 months now. My cycle averages at 27 days. I usually ovulate on day 13. This month, I ovulated as normal, but AF was 4 days early. I have been taking FCLO daily for years and did not add EPO. Could that be part of the reason I was so early? I started cycling because since my tubal, AF has been extremely heavy (must empty diva cup every 1.5 hrs on day 2) and large clots. Also more cramps than before tubal.

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi June,
      Was this cycle as heavy/clotty? Usually the heavy/clotty flow I look at as a sign of a liver/detox issue – like your body is having trouble processing the extra hormone burden that goes with your cycle (this totally used to be my cycle. So so bad.) Anyway, if there’s a sort of detox thing happening then it might just be a little confusing for your body. I’m hoping that even though it was too early (not ideal) it was an easier cycle (better). I’d say give it another couple of cycles to normalize. Hopefully by then you’ll see easier flow and less clotting and closer to your normal 27 days. Because this does have hormone effect it can certainly change the cycle length, but once your body gets used to it things should even out. Keep me posted!

      Reply
  49. Sony

    Hi Amy

    Like I have mentioned in my previous comments, my cycle had always been 25 days. For some strange reason, this month it was four days early. It was supposed to come on 18th but came on 14th. As far as I remember this is the first time my periods have come early. So if my periods come early again next month, should I keep on doing second phase or should I switch to first phase when the period comes even though they are early. I hope I made sense.

    Regards

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hmmm. I’d keep going with second phase, because that really isn’t something we want to encourage – if that makes sense. Keep me posted!

      Reply
  50. Angie

    I chart my cycles with FAM, temperatures and cervical fluid, etc. Anyway, I started seed cycling this past cycle and my cycle’s temps were great, nice clear temp shift, high sustained temps in the luteal phase. Except that now I’m on my period and my period is light, I’m on day 3. I have noticed that my temps are taking their time dropping and that just may not have triggered significant cramps yet (I’ve just had very very slight cramps). It may could be cuz of that. But, I was wondering if the seed cycling could have caused my period to be like this. Any help?

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Angie,
      Without knowing what your cycle is normally like it’s hard to say, but certainly the seeds create a shift and generally should help to clarify the hormone picture. I love seeing those clear temperatures through ovulation, but the sustained drop is generally a pain. Honestly it will take your body a few months to work things out with the seed cycling so yes – this could totally be caused by the seeds, and it should normalize and regulate within a few months. There can be an adjustment at first though – if you stick to the seed cycling keep me posted! I’d love to hear how it goes for you, especially when you’re doing such detailed tracking.

      Reply
      1. Angie

        My period ended up getting heavy for a day, but the other days were light. I’m still gonna continue seed cycling 🙂 It ended up being the best, easiest period of my life! Less cramp days, less migraine days also and it was just my first cycle seed cycling. Just had kinda erratic temps during my period, but hopefully that will calm down. I’m excited to see what other great changes are in store for me!

        Reply
  51. Brandi D'Amore

    I have a couple of questions regarding when to switch. If your Cycles are irregular comma for example I just started my cycle 17 days after my last one if one is within the sunflower Sesame face and their cycle starts does that mean that they have to stop and start taking the pumpkin and flax or do they continue taking the sunflower and sesame the full two weeks. So I guess I’m asking is this you truncate the second part if your period comes early

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Great question Brandi,
      Honestly there isn’t a simple answer and it depends on how long your cycles have been irregular, etc… The easiest way to summarize is that if your cycles are regularly irregular (like they’re always 17-19 days) then we start by adjusting the seed cycle to that cycle (so switch at 8-9 days) and then slowly lengthen the cycle over a few months to encourage your cycle to become a normal length. If your cycle is irregularly irregular (like you never know when it’s going to show up) then I would keep to a regular seed cycling schedule for a few months to see if that will help regulate. I hope this wasn’t too confusing! Keep me posted.

      Reply
      1. Brandi D'Amore

        So I guess my next question then is when the. Starts unexpectedly does that mean that I then immediately start back again at pumpkin and flax? Because I was into the sunflower sesame seed face when all the sudden my period showed up so I don’t know if I should continue taking that or start back again with pumpkin and flax

        Reply
  52. Nicole

    I have a question. My cycle has been switching between 24-27 days.
    I was told by a friend to track ovulation and just switch seeds once I’ve ovulated but I’m horrible at tracking ovulation and am not even certain I am ovulating monthly.
    What do I do? Do I do the first 14 days with the flax & pumpkin and switch like usual then start over at day 1 even if it’s not a full 28 days or what? I’m incredibly confused but excited to start.
    Thank you.

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Nicole,
      The *best* way really is to track ovulation (but I get that it can be hard if your body doesn’t give clear signals). If that isn’t possible then try shortening the first half of the seed cycle to 12 days and switching then, so that your body gets more of the luteal (progesterone enhancing) phase because that is the one that most of us have the most trouble with. I hope this helps!

      Reply
  53. Stephanie

    My Traditional Chinese Medicine doctor suggested I take flax seed on days 15-28 and borage oil days 1-14. When I first heard about seed cycling, he said I could certainly try it that way and see how it works for me. He did say that he recommended the flax seed for the 2nd half as it supports progesterone. Can I take the flax/pumpkin seeds during the second half and the sunflower/sesame seeds during the first half? Or should I switch them as you have here?

    Also, my cycle tends to be about 32 days (give or take) and I ovulate late, around day 22-24. Should I switch the seeds according to ovulation or keep the on days 1-14 and 15-28? If the latter, then what do I do for days 29 until the end of my cycle? Thanks!

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Stephanie,
      If you’re working with a practitioner then I suggest following their advice because they know you and I’m just working with generic information. Also they’ll be putting together a whole protocol that will work together synergistically with the imbalances they see in your picture. In general I’d suggest switching the seeds closer to when you want to ovulate to encourage the second half of your cycle to lengthen. So – follow your practitioner’s advice first and keep me posted if you have time – I’m always curious about results when people do things slightly differently.

      Reply
      1. Stephanie

        Thank you! This makes sense and your info on when to switch the seeds is helpful. I will let you know how it goes for sure.

        Reply
  54. Denise

    Hi Amy,

    Yes, I am historically very regular. Thanks for answers my question. Ok – I will switch over at Day 29 to the flax/pumpkin seeds, even if I don’t get my period that day (which I should since I’m so regular).

    I wanted to start seed cycling for a few reasons. For the past 1.5 years , 1) I was getting really bad headaches around my period. 2) I was getting really bad cramps. 3) I was getting really moody around my period – PMS (no fun!) and 4) I developed a small fibroid which I believe is due to an imbalance of the hormones. After 1 round of cycling, the headaches went away completely, and the cramps are already improving, and I was not nearly as moody. So, I think it’s working.

    Denise

    Reply
  55. Christine Mitchell

    Hi, Dr. Neuzil, thank you for this info! I have multiple health issues (i.e. hypothyroidism, chronic fatigue, adrenal fatigue, poor gut health) along with hormonal imbalance. Consequently, I went gluten & refined sugar free then paleo in an effort to naturally help myself heal. I’m also going clean with my skincare, personal care, & cleaning products but still experience female-/hormonal-related issues. Due to my unique dietary needs, I make grain-free breads with seeds & nuts among other paleo ingredients. My question:

    Do I have to stick strictly to the pumpkin & flaxseeds only days 1-14 then sunflower & sesame seeds only days 15-28 without any of my seed bread/crackers/desserts/seed butters in my diet? Or can I continue to eat seeds throughout my diet but focus on the seed cycling & still expect beneficial results?

    I hope my rambling makes enough sense. Thank you for your time & help!

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Christine,
      The question totally makes sense. So – if seeds are a huge part of your diet anyway then things get a little muddy, but I believe seed cycling can still be very effective with a little bit of good seed hygiene. First off, some seeds, like chia, are entirely hormone neutral and can be used at any time of the month without upsetting the balance. I would think that if you try to emphasize the seeds from the appropriate half of the cycle in that part of the month then things will probably work out (so don’t go on a pumpkin seed cracker binge in the sesame/sunflower part of the cycle but it’s probably okay if there are a few pumpkin seed crackers here and there). Also to my knowledge most tree nuts are hormone neutral so things like pecans, walnuts, almonds, etc… can be used at any point in the cycle.

      Reply
  56. Zahra

    Hello,

    I have PCOS and havent had a period in 3 months. I was wondering if I could just start taking the seeds now? Like start taking the first 2 for 14 days then the other 2 ? Or do I have to wait to one day get a period before starting? And I’m really confused about when a moon cycle is/what its like….. How do you know when it starts?

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Zahra,
      Great question. Yes – so since your cycle has been gone for a while you really can start any time. I suggest the moon phases just because it’s easy for your body to synchronize with and evidence suggests that the moon itself might make a difference. Here’s a moon phase module for you to see so you know what the moon is doing at all times. I hope this helps!

      CURRENT MOON

      Reply
    2. Jess

      Hi I’m in the same boat, I googled the moon cycle and followed that today is new moon so I’m switching to day 1 flaxseed and pumpkin. I take evening promise every day not sure if this is advisable ?

      Reply
      1. amyneuzil Post author

        Hi Jess,
        I’d cycle the EPO with flax oil, especially while things are getting normalized. Also hopefully you can see the moon phases plug-in that I added, so hopefully that helps. 🙂

        Reply
  57. Sony

    Hi Amy
    Thanks a lot for reply. I have one more question. In a 28 day cycle, we switch to second phase of seed cycling on day 15th. In a 25 day cycle, should we switch on day 12th or 13th? Honestly I can’t tell when I ovulate.

    Rehards

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Sony,
      If your cycle has always been 25 days and has been reasonably healthy, then yes – switch seeds on the 12th – 13th day and see how it goes. If you’d rather push your cycle out (or try) so that it’s closer to a 28 day cycle (in theory this is best for our fertility) then keep the switch at day 15 for a few months and see if your cycle starts to adjust. Honestly it’s your call – many women have a healthy, fertile, 25 day cycle so it’s certainly normal for some.

      Reply
  58. Sony

    Hi Amy
    Until about two years ago my cycle was 25 days and it would last for four days . For example if my periods come on 20th of first month, they will start on 15th of next month. It is still more or less 25 days but now I start to have very light spotting for 2 to 3 days before my actual periods come. If I use the dates mentioned earlier, in second month I will have some spotting from 12th to 15th and my periods will start on 15th that last longer than 4 days. I want to try seed cycling. I have two questions though. Should I start seed cycling the day I start spotting (12th in the example above) or the day of my actual periods(15th)? Also since my cycle is 25 days, should I continue the second phase till day 28 or just start the first phase seeds when my periods come? I also want to mention that during spotting, blood is not clear/bright and flow is that light that I can just use panty liners. If possible can you please reply my questions soon so I can start seed cycling this month.
    Regards.

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Sony,
      Great questions! I would start seed cycling on the first day of your actual flow and not the spotting, because we want that to go away. IF 25 days has always been your normal then it might always be your normal and that’s okay, but the spotting and light flow aren’t ideal. So keep to a 25 day cycle, but don’t count the spotting as the start of your period. Also make sure if we’re not seeing improvement after three months to check things out with your GYN – we don’t want to miss something weird going on. Great luck and keep me posted!

      Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Jessica,
      So that’s a great question, and it depends on why they’ve stopped. Step 1 is to get everything checked out with your gynaecologist just to make sure there isn’t anything spooky going on. Periods can stop for a variety of reasons – stress, pregnancy, some medications, drastic weight loss or weight fluctuations, menopause, PCOS, etc… But it can also be related to changes in thyroid functioning, and more serious conditions like pituitary tutors – your doctor can help you to rule out all of those things. So it’s hard to really say, but once you get it checked out then we’ll have more info to go on. Seed cycling is certainly gentle enough to be safe in all of those situations, but it’s also a good idea to find out what’s going on because delaying treatment isn’t a good idea with some of the possibilities.

      Reply
  59. Hanaaaa

    Hi Dr! I’ve just started seed cycling yesterday after reading your post (which was so so great) in the hopes of helping me bring on my period (haven’t had one in 5 years due to severe Anorexia nervosa, anxiety, depression, exersize addicrion and panic attacks) and it hasn’t come even tho I”m at a vwry healthy weight and have been for 1.5 years, eating consistently and exersizing little to nothing,enter seed cycling. But I was wondering, can chia seeds be included, what phase and can they possibly substitute another seed group? I love chias so much and they have such great aminos and benefits!:) thank you for your anwser:)

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Hanaaaa,
      Great question! So – as far as I know the chia seeds are relatively hormonally neutral, so they can’t substitute for any of the seeds we’re using for the seed cycling, but they are a great addition to any healthy diet and in your particular case using those throughout your whole cycle might help to restore some of the nutrients your body will need to restart your cycles. And honestly don’t be discouraged – with that kind of a history it might take your body a while to replenish all of the nutrients necessary for normal cycling. I think the seeds will help though – if you have time I’d love it if you’d let me know how it all goes for you! I’d say give it at least three months to see if it’s going to be a good path for you.

      Reply
      1. J

        I’ve read other sources that say to go for more of the Omega 3s (such as Chia) during the Follicular stage, and more of the Omega 6s (such as evening primrose) during the Luteal phase.
        There are also certain foods to increase estrogen such as fennel, and foods that decrease estrogen, such as the brassica family (broccoli, cauliflower, kale…).
        Since you liver has a good deal to do with filtering hormones, it’s a good idea to make sure your keeping your liver cleansed. Milk Thistle is good for that and so are ginger, turmeric and organic lemon juice (non-organic is often too high in pesticides).
        There are also essential oils for balancing hormones. Lots of info on google. Rose Geranium is a good general hormone balancing one. Clary Sage is good for the Follicular stage. It stimulates the Pituitary gland which produces estrogen. It’s also good for the Thyroid. Essential oils Thyme (Thujanol) and Marjoram together are used in the Luteal phase. Marjoram is also good for the spleen.
        I’ve found that essential oils (topically and in an air diffuser: no heat) have really helped my stress, anxiety and decreased my waking up panicking in the night. I’m hoping that they’ll also work for my hormones.
        The hormones in meat and milk can also really mess up your own hormones.
        Hope you can get things straightened out!

        Reply
        1. amyneuzil Post author

          Hi J,
          Yes – there are so many things to try – we’re not limited to just seeds by any means! Hormones are a huge issue for both women and men these days given all of the hormone-like toxins in food, water, pesticides, plastics, etc… It’s a mess.

          Reply
  60. WARDHA

    Hi, I am yet to try this. I am really looking forward to this, having battled with hormonal acne for over 10 years. Are there any food I should be not eating with this? Any specific diet requirements ?

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Wardha,
      I’m excited for you to try it! Honestly if you’re having a lot of hormone shifts then I’d try to stay away from the more hormone-filled foods like soy and non-organic dairy. Also things like trans fats and fried foods. I’ll be excited to hear how it goes!

      Reply
  61. CC

    I just have to say, this saved my life!!! I was religiously on the pill for years to help my skin, until I had a blood clot & had to stop hormonal BC. My dermatologist put me on another drug, an off label use of another kind of RX that she said she had to stop refilling after a while (not a long term use drug) & I started breaking out again like crazy (in my 30s). After scouring the internet & coming across this, no less than one cycle later was my skin flawless & my period like clockwork (also, zero PMS for the first time ever). Thank you SO much!!

    Reply
  62. Hana

    Thanks, Amyneuzil, I have been doing this for more than a year now, thanks for sharing this with all the woman that have hormone problems, I cannot explain how depressed I was after stopping on the pill and all my face filled up with uncontrollable acne! until I tried seed cycle and after some months everything returned to normal cycles, I have a couple of questions , I’m very consistent with the seeds, this last two months my period has been coming late for one week, and this one again a week later, should I be worried? Also, is it bad to take the same seeds with your partner even if the cycles are supposed to be opposite, what adverse situations do you think could present? I know this sound silly but I wondered… Thanks again for sharing this treasure!

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Hana,
      God yes seed cycling is such a great thing for so many of us (myself included). So – I’m not sure if I”m understanding the situation. You’re taking the same seeds as your partner, but your cycles are opposite? Does that mean that you’re following her cycle when you take the seeds? If that’s the case then for sure your cycle is going to adjust, and honestly two women living closely together typically synchronize cycles anyway, so that could be part of why your cycle is drifting a week later. So – not sure if I answered that or not, but if not then just write back!

      Reply
      1. Hana

        Hey Amy, I understand the confusion. My partner is a guy, that is the reason I was asking about the opposite seed cycles haha 😂

        Reply
  63. Douglas

    Would you explain why your cycling schedule is opposite of all others I’ve seen? My N.D. started my wife and I (and all his patients) on the same seeds and oils but the opposite phase of the moon’s cycle. All other Seed Cycling articles I’ve researched also have them opposite. Can you explain that please?

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Douglas,
      I actually seed cycle the way I was taught in school, and the rational for the different seeds at different times in the month is explained in the article but I’d be really curious to see a different way if you can point me to a reference – I’m always interested to hear how other people do it. If you’re doing it using the seeds at opposite times of the month will you keep me posted? I’d love to hear how it goes for you!

      Reply
      1. amyneuzil Post author

        Awesome chart! Although be careful using hemp seeds – they have a VERY different effect on hormones. Chia seeds are hormone neutral, although do have beneficial Omega-3 oils (so will decrease inflammation but won’t directly work on hormone balance).

        Reply
  64. Allison Heaton

    I’ve been seed cycling since February and feeling great. I’ll be 50 soon, and my period this past month was painless, and 28 days…
    My question… do I stop seed cycling, or is this forever!

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Allison,
      First off – that is awesome! It’s a great question and I don’t have a great answer. It seems like a lot of women choose to continue to seed cycle through menopause because it seems to make the process so much smoother, but then a lot of women choose to keep it up even after menopause because they say it helps to keep skin and vaginal integrity (and I don’t see why it wouldn’t – it makes sense to me that it would help with the hormone-related aging). But then it’s also a lot to keep track of, so ??? I’d say do what feels right to you – I’m certainly pleased you’re seeing such great results!

      Reply
  65. allencat

    Hi Amy,
    I am on day 17 of my 3rd month of seed cycling. First, I love it! It has helped so much already. I have just a couple of questions. Last month I had spotting on day 24, which apparently was my period. I kept taking the sesame/sunflower seeds through day 28. Today I had a little spotting which like I said I’m on day 17 of the seed cycling however it’s 22 days since my last period. Can I possible have a 24 day cycle? Should I start on the flax/pumpkin seeds if I start? My doctor wants me to get blood work on day 19, so now when is day 19?
    Thanks for your help.

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Allencat,
      I love it too – it’s such a gentle way to balance things out. I would say spotting is not your period, so it sounds to me like you skipped a cycle. That would mean you’re on day 17 but that there was a skipped flow in there. As to why you’re spotting, that is more challenging. Skipping a cycle can happen for a lot of reasons – stress, changes in routine, antibiotics, etc… but the combo of skipping one and spotting isn’t any fun. I would say keep seed cycling as though you’re on a 28 day cycle and watch and wait. This could be just part of the process of sorting things out, but if you miss more cycles or continue to spot randomly then certainly talk with your doctor about it (which it sounds like you’re already doing since they are ordering blood work). Keep me posted – I’d love to hear how it all sorts out!

      Reply
  66. radhika

    Hi Amy,

    I am on seed cycling since 5 months and my cycle is now between 28-30 days planning to do for one more month and stop is it fine? Can i plan for pregnancy on seed cycling?

    Reply
  67. Kristina

    Hello Dr! I am 24, and I have not had my period for about 1 1/2 years, ive had some history of over exercising and calorie restrict and anxiety and stress (oh gosh i sound like a mess), but I was wondering if this would help bring it on? Also if you have any tips or tricks with clients that youve worked with in the past with possibly the same problem? PLEASE HELP!

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Kristina,
      Ha! Don’t worry about it – when you put it down in writing we all sound like a mess. 🙂 This can help, but at the end of the day your body needs enough body fat to make hormones, so it will certainly help but not enough to give you a cycle if you’re still underweight. If you’ve come back to an ideal weight then it can certainly help to kick-start the whole process and it’s a nice gentle way to do it. Just give it a few months – I usually say you’ll know if it’s helping at about the three month mark. Keep me posted – I’d love to know how it does for you!

      Reply
  68. Michelle Elizabeth

    Hi Dr Amy!
    Thank you so much for this very informative article- it is really very thorough!! I am using a seed rotation to try to help my terrible periods and my estrogen dominance. One question for you, my cycles have been falling on the full moon for some time now- I start bleeding the day or night of the full moon, and from what I’ve read this can be sort of common (red moon type). Should I be trying to make my cycle go with the normal moon cycle, ie. ovulate on the full moon? Or is it okay to be the opposite lol? If I should be aiming for the opposite of what I have now, should I be switching the seeds in the rotation? Thank you in advance! 🙂

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Michelle,
      So interesting – I’ve gone through phases in my life where my cycle syncs with the new moon and phases where it syncs with the full moon and each time it will take about 6-9 months to switch from one to the other (usually switches every few years for unknown reasons). I trust that my body, and yours, know far more about what they’re doing than we do so I’d say just go with it. If you think of it a few years down the line let me know if you ever switched, I’d love to know if this is just me, or if other women cycle too. I theorize that it might have something to do with peak fertility cycles, but that’s just me thinking too much about it! Just keep following your body – there’s no need to push. Keep me posted if you can!

      Reply
      1. Michelle Elizabeth

        Thank you so much Dr Amy!!! I will go with the “flow” and trust my body haha!! Ive read about the full moon cycle being common with ladies who are big into personal development, teaching others what they’ve learned, more like giving birth to new ideas and cultivating the community around you. Maybe that’s when you were developing your practice or working on yourself!! The description fit me to a T, so I am going with it hehe!! Interesting stuff though for sure. I am grateful for your site and have subscribed to get your updates! Thanks again for responding 🙂

        Reply
        1. amyneuzil Post author

          Hi Michelle,
          Oh that is so interesting about the teaching/cultivating community… If you can find the source I’d love to read it! Thanks for being here. 🙂

          Reply
  69. v

    Hi Dr Amy

    Ive been seed cycling for 1 month and noticed great changes to my moods but just started to panic as I am on a birth control pill will this stop the pill from working as I’m not at a stage where pregnancy is really an option.

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi V,
      Honestly I have never seen any information anywhere to suggest that seed cycling interferes with birth control pills. My guess would be that it should be as reliable as birth control ever is (which is still not 100% sadly) but if you’re worried about it condoms when you’re ovulating can bring some peace of mind. 🙂

      Reply
  70. Olivia

    Thank you for all of the very helpful information! I have one question- my ND just told me to take fermented fish oil to help naturally reduce my cholesterol. He also suggested seed cycling to help reduce my very heavy and long cycles. I see you recommend fish oil during the first phase and evening primrose oil for the second phase. Is it going to be a problem for my cycles if I continue to take fish oil for the entire 28 days? If I do take fish oil the entire 28 days, should I still add EPO for days 15-28? Thank you!

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Olivia,
      If you’re working with an ND then I’d say trust what he says! And generally no problem to take the fish oil through the whole cycle – for most of us it’s a big benefit because it’s strongly anti-inflammatory and we all need some of that. If you do the seed cycling for 3 months and really aren’t noticing a difference then maybe talk with your ND about keeping the fish oil but doing a higher dose days 1-14 and adding the EPO days 15-28. Chances are you’ll be fine without it but it’s a good back-up plan if your body needs a bigger kick. Great luck!

      Reply
  71. Denise Jones

    Hello! Great site! I’m 41. I have a regular cycle and get my period every 28 days. Sometimes I’ll get it on Day 27, but then the next period will come on Day 29. So, my body is very good at balancing itself out. There are 3 things going on with my period. #1) In the past year and a half, my periods are much heavier on days 1 and 2. And instead of 2-3 days of bleeding with one last day of spotting, the bleeding now lasts 3-4 day with two days of spotting. That could be because I used to run about 40 miles a week and now am not running (although still very active). Or I’m wondering if it’s due to a small fibroid I have. #2) I used to get cramps but they weren’t bad enough to need Advil. Now I have cramps on Day 1 and 2 that are so bad that I have to take Advil. #3) I’m getting some headaches around the time of my period. My naturopath told me to used a progesterone creme for Days 14 of my period until I get my period). I think that stopped the headaches. So, I think I could benefit from a more natural way of handling the headaches. My questions are – Do you think I could benefit from seed cycling? Would I just start on Day 1 of my next period (June 12)? Is there a substitution for flax seeds (just curious). Thank you and kindest regards.

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Denise,
      WOW – 40 miles a week is awesome. My guess would be the hormone troubles are more related to the fibroid than anything else, but the fibroid formed because your estrogen was too high relative to your progesterone in the first place. So yes – I’d say seed cycling would be awesome for you! It sounds like you’re not far off balance because your body is really doing incredibly well, but still could use a little adjustment and that’s the perfect scenario. The only issue that I would see is that although seed cycling can help to restore that balance between estrogen and progesterone, it’s not likely to make the fibroid go away (at least not in a short period of time – if it does help to shrink it I would suspect it would take years). So to clarify, I think the seed cycling will help the headaches and may even lighten up the bleeding and cramping, but the fibroid will still be there and may still keep some of the bleeding and cramping around. Does that make sense? And I”d say yes – just start on day 1 of your next cycle. In terms of the flax seeds – they are the highest dietary source of lignans that I know of (which is the part that we’re looking for). Here are a couple of articles on lignans and breast cancer, and this fabulous article on the health benefits of lignans from Oregon State University. As you can see the dose in flax seeds is 8 times higher than the next-highest source (which is sesame seeds, so I wouldn’t suggest those as a substitute). So – there isn’t really a great direct substitute that I know of, but you could work on boosting overall dietary levels. Let me know!

      Reply
      1. Denise

        Thank you you for the response! I sincerely appreciate it! I’ve got all of the seeds and will start it today (Day 1 of my period). I’m hoping that it will help with headaches and cramps. I understand it won’t help with the fibroid though. Maybe it will help the fibroid not get any bigger if I can get the hormonal balance in order. How many cycles does it usually take to feel the benefits of seed cycling (reduced cramps and headaches)? I’m guessing it probably depends on the individual, but I figured I’d ask.

        I understand that mixing the seeds up at different times can confuse the body. But is it at all ok to have sunflower seeds in phase 1, or to have flax seeds in phase 2? Or should that be completely avoided?

        In preparation for this, I was trying to figure out how I’d get the flax seeds into my diet. I thought I’d mention that I find it helpful to soak a tablespoon of flax seeds in a a few tablespoons of almond milk overnight which really softens them. I add this little mixture to the Vitamix in the morning for my smoothie and it blends right up with no trace of flax seeds. Also, for people who are looking for a way to eat sunflower seeds, I roast them and make sunflower butter which is a nice way to get them. Just sharing some sunflower seed butter I make that we always have on hand. It’ll be a helpful way to get the sunflower seeds! Here is a link to my recipe if appropriate to share. http://sultenskat.com/homemade-sunflower-seed-butter/)

        Many thanks again. I’ll report back to let you know how it goes!

        Reply
        1. amyneuzil Post author

          Ooh – the flax seeds in almond milk sounds nice! Thanks for that. So – typically women will start to notice subtle differences the first month, but I suggest trying it for three months before you make up your mind about continuing it. Mixing the seeds up at different times is an issue because there are so many benefits to all of the seeds (and they’re yummy) that a lot of time you want them other times of the month too. My general rule is to make sure I have either no mixing, or if there is going to be mixing then I actually double the amounts of the seed-cycle seeds so that the other seeds don’t interfere. Does that make sense?

          Reply
          1. Denise

            That makes sense. I’m not mixing the seeds since I want the best possible result. I’ll stick to flax seeds and pumpkin seeds for Days 1-14 , and then sesame and sunflower seeds for Days 15-18. And I’ll keep it going for the next 2 cycles to see what happens. I still had some cramps during my period last week, but they were manageable. It’s the first time in over a year that I didn’t need to take Aleve during a period. Thank you!

          2. Denise

            I had the pumpkin/flax seeds for Days 1-14 of my period. Then I switched over to sunflower/sesame seeds for Days 15-28. Today is Day 29. If I DON’T get my period today (Day 29), should I continue with the sunflower/sesame seeds until I do get it. Or should I not take any seeds until i get it?

            I’m very regular with my period and usually get it on Day 28 or 29. But just asking. I’m not sure if I’m in sync with the moon or if seed cycling tries to get you in sync with the moon. I’m simply doing it to help regulate progesterone and estrogen naturally.

            Also, I got a seed grinder for the flax seeds and am excited to use it once I hit day 1. I think the grinder will be a total game changer in terms of how easy it will be to get these seeds into the diet in varying ways.

            Thanks for your great forum here! It’s fantastic!

            Denise

          3. Denise

            Hi Amy,

            Just following up on my July 12 post which was….

            “I had the pumpkin/flax seeds for Days 1-14 of my period. Then I switched over to sunflower/sesame seeds for Days 15-28. Today is Day 29. If I DON’T get my period today (Day 29), should I continue with the sunflower/sesame seeds until I do get it. Or should I not take any seeds until i get it?

            I’m very regular with my period and usually get it on Day 28 or 29. But just asking. I’m not sure if I’m in sync with the moon or if seed cycling tries to get you in sync with the moon. I’m simply doing it to help regulate progesterone and estrogen naturally.”

            What I ended up doing in July was this…
            I ended up switching over to flax and pumpkin on Day 29 even though I didn’t get my period until Day 32 (which is pretty late for me). In the past, i always notice that if I’m a day late with my cycle, I’ll get it a day early on the next cycle. So, since my last cycle was 4 days late, maybe it’ll be 4 days early. We’ll see.

            Anyway, for my next period, I was wondering if I should switch over to flax/pumpkin on Day 29 automatically, OR if I should continue with the sunflower/sesame until I actually do get my period. And if my period is early, should I switch over to flax/pumpkin on whatever day I get it?

            Thanks!

            Denise

          4. amyneuzil Post author

            Hi Denise,
            I would say if you are historically really regular then switch over at day 29. Were you having other symptoms of imbalance that pushed you to start seed cycling? Or just to see what would change? Just curious. 🙂

    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Sure! This isn’t supposed to be a quick fix anyway – it’s slow and steady. I don’t think your body will mind any additional support. 🙂

      Reply
  72. Judy Kerner

    Hi Dr. Amy,
    Thank you for your reply. I continue to wait for my cycle, it has been 57 days and I am still doing the second phase seeds sesame/sunflower with EPO. I will keep doing it and then try to match up with moon phases and see what happens. My cycles were pretty regular every 26-28 days prior to the irregularity that began a few months ago, I just have always had problematic PMS and diagnosed endometriosis when I was early 20’s. I also took a pregnancy test just in case, and it was negative, thank goodness, at 47 that would be quite a surprise!

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Ha! Yes – that would be quite a surprise. A good friend of mine had an “oops” baby 13 years after the last of her 3 kids, and eleven years later ANOTHER “oops” baby. Can you imagine?!? Keep me posted and for sure if things feel like there is any kind of an issue or if we’re getting nowhere then talk with your GYN. Hopefully things will normalize gently with the seeds. 🙂

      Reply
  73. Julie

    I am having anxiety when I ovulate and the days leading up to my period. I also have post partum anxiety. I went on the pill for 2 cycles and it did get rid of the anxiety but I started having negative side effects so I had to stop. Will this help? I am starting my cycle and want to get started!

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Julie,
      Hard to say if it will help but I certainly think it’s worth a try. It’s gentle and natural and certainly helps to balance out the high-highs and the low-lows of hormone irregularity so I don’t see why it wouldn’t smooth out some anxiety too. I have certainly seen it help with depression and PMS, which seems related. If you decide to try it let me know how it goes for you – I’d be curious to see what your experience is.

      Reply
      1. Julie

        I went ahead and started the seed cycling. I am on Day 7. On Day 15 do I automatically switch to the next phase or do I wait until I ovulate? If I ovulate earlier than day 15 do I start phase 2 then or wait until day 15? How do I know for sure that I have ovulated? I was on the pill for 7 weeks and started feeling so sick. Lost weight, exhaustion, eyes drying out, migraines, shortness of breath, legs feeling weak, questioning everything, tongue and throat swelling. Some of those things have gotten better. How long do you think it takes for that to get out of your system? I even got a uti right before my period this time (1st one off the pill). I know my hormones are crazy! I don’t want to go on another birth control pill because I saw what it did when I was on it and now I am suffering some side effects of coming off. Any insight would be greatly appreciated. I think my dr. just wants me to try another one.

        Reply
        1. Robin

          Hi Amy, Thanks for this article… I also have the similar question as Julie. I have long cycles (33-38 days). I am still trying to get my cycle back to normal after years of the pill (I’ve been off for 6 months). I’m TTC and have been monitoring my ovulation by BBT and OPK. I seem to ovulate late (around day 25) and have a short luteal phase, between 8-10 days. So I’m wondering, should I wait to switch seeds until I ovulate or go ahead and switch at day 14?

          Thanks so much for your help. Your article is very helpful and I love the graphic with the moon.
          Robin

          Reply
          1. amyneuzil Post author

            Hi Robin,
            I’m so glad you asked this question! So – our goal is shifting your ovulation forward, so go ahead and switch seeds on day 14-15. Hopefully this will encourage your body to get to it a little earlier and lengthen out that luteal phase. And honestly, don’t worry. Birth control takes ages to work it’s way out of your system so sounds like you’re doing really well for 6 months! Great luck and keep me posted.

  74. A Anderson

    Hi there, I was just diagnosed with endometriosis because they found bilateral “chocolate cysts” on my ovaries. So obviously, this isn’t going to be THE cure but I’d like to add it to my arsenal of attack on this. Should I take the seeds as recommended above? My cycles are pretty consistently 28-30 days apart and normal flow of 3-4 days.

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi there,
      Endometriosis is such a bummer – my mom struggled with it for years and managed to avoid hysterectomy (Which was the only real solution in those days) but it was a battle. I do think this would help because with seed cycling the seeds help to modulate the negative effects of estrogen excess, which endometriosis typically has, as well as boosting progesterone which helps to balance out the estrogen. I would certainly say it’s worth a shot, although double check with your gynecologist because they will know the particulars of your case. Also you may want to read this post on breast health, not so much for your breasts, but because I talk a lot about estrogen overload. There are lots of things we don’t know about endometriosis (like why the endometriotic tissue decides to implant other places) but we do know that it typically happens in women with high estrogen levels so if you can take some steps to control the estrogen it may help to manage your symptoms. I hope this helps!

      Reply
  75. Pingback: The Ups, The Downs: How to Support Your Body’s Menstrual Cycle | Peoples Rx, Austin's Favorite Pharmacy

  76. Allison Heaton

    Hi. I’m almost 50 and going through perimenopause. One been seed cycling for 3 months now. What I’ve noticed is….no more cramps! I’m journalist when my periods ate and for how long as once that’s been problematic (every 25 days or so, and one time…twice in one month)…but now, I’m not sure what I should do…I’m late by a week. I’m still taking seeda days for days 15-31. Do I jusy stick with that until my period comes around. So perpplexed. Don’t mind ever having another period again…but I’m like what?!

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Allison,
      Awesome about the cramps! So, people have different opinions about this, but I say just stick to the seeds for the second half of your cycle. Chances are you’ll skip one and then restart as normal, but who knows??? Most women will just start to skip more and more frequently during menopause until they stop altogether. Generally if you go more than 3 months with no cycle then start cycling the seeds with the moon phase because even if you’re not having a period they seem beneficial in preventing some of the worst of the menopausal symptoms as well as keeping some hormone-like activity happening (like preventing skin-changes after menopause and that sort of thing). Of course if you’re not getting a cycle and start having symptoms of something else then check with your gynecologist just to make sure that it’s only menopause (“only” haha!) and not something else going on.

      Reply
  77. Stephanie

    My cycles are fairly regular, but not 28 days. They are typically 29-32 days. I track my fertility and it is ready to tell when I ovulate, usually day 15-18, as would be appropriate for a 29-32 day cycle. Iwould like to begin seed cycling and other dietary support for hormone balance, because I do have hormonal acne and low libido. My question is this: Should I take the pumpkin/flax seeds until I ovulate at 15-18 days, or for 14 days only?

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Great question!
      Sounds like your cycles are pretty good, but not optimal. Some women do have longer cycles and that’s fine, but the libido and acne indicate that something isn’t quite the way your body wants it. I would say wait until you ovulate up to 16 days (so if you ovulate on day 15 or 16 then that’s the day. If you haven’t ovulated yet, switch after day 16 anyway). So the latest you’d be switching is day 17. Over the next few months hopefully we will see your cycle start to get shorter and more regular so that we can push back to maximum day 16, then 15, then 14. Most women ovulate around 14, but could be 15 or 16 even in a 28 day cycle so just be mindful of your body. The goal here is a gentle compromise between your actual cycle length and the ideal we’re shooting for. Great question!

      Reply
  78. Sylena

    Dr Amy,

    I am 37 and the first day of my last cycle was 8 weeks and 2 days ago. From what I understand from above, I would need to start with the sunflower seeds and sesame seeds rotation, is that correct? As well as primrose oil? I am having all the symptoms I would normaly have just before cycling….for the past month! The only dietray change I have made is i’ve started brewing and drinking kombutcha. I’ve consulted my GYN and she’s ordered bloodwork but she mainly wants to give me a one time progesterone pill. I am interested in long trem support not a one time fix. Please advise.

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Sylena,
      Starting with the sunflower/sesame sounds good! If we get to the next new moon and still no cycle, then switch to flax/pumpkin. Does that make sense? So follow your own cycle to start, but if no cycle is happening then follow the lunar cycle. It does take a while to normalize things, but hopefully this will help! Keep me posted!

      Reply
  79. Jessica

    Hi! I struggle with a lot of allergies and food sensitivities. I would love to try this – I am peri-menopausal and have struggled with my hormones most of my life til I was tested for food allergies when I was 30 – but I am allergic to both sunflower seeds and sesame seeds. What would a good replacement for those be?

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Jessica,
      So I”m just in the process of researching this but so far there isn’t much info on good substitute seeds. I would try 2-3 Brazil nuts for natural selenium, 1/2 tablespoon of pumpkin seeds to keep the zinc and 1 tablespoon safflower oil for the linoleic acid. It’s not a perfect solution, but it’s at least workable and will help to push your body in the right direction. Also when you’re doing it this way I would add in the EPO just to make sure we’re going in the right direction. I would love to hear how this goes for you so keep me posted!

      Reply
  80. Pingback: Seed Cycling and Pregnancy Before, During and After | To Health With That!

  81. Heather

    Hi Dr Amy, I am 45 and am on day 85 of my cycle and still no period. I have using femmenessence (maca) and DIM to help regulate my hormones for several months, and my periods were still irregular… on about a 35-50 day cycle. 2 weeks ago I started seed rotation.

    Is it ok to do seed rotation in combination with the DIM & maca or do I need to go for progesterone to get my cycle back? And can I continue to drink hemp milk daily without affecting the seed rotation?

    Thank you!
    Heather

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Heather,
      So – the hemp milk might be estrogenic enough to be throwing things off so maybe try switching to almond or coconut milk (soy is also estrogenic so that wouldn’t be a good alternative). In general it’s okay to combine seed cycling with maca or DIM, but I don’t know your hormone history prior to this, so??? It could be a good idea to work one-on-one with someone to refine your protocol and make sure it’s the best one for you given your complete hormone history because that matters. Keep me posted – I’d love to hear what happens!

      Reply
      1. Heather

        Thank you, Dr. Amy. I appreciate your feedback. My integrative doc suggested I add back in fish oil since I’ve been off for 6 weeks while doing the seed rotation and still haven’t got my period. He thinks I need the other benefits of fish oil. Do you know people who have been able to have success with the seed rotation while consuming fish oil during the off time?

        Thanks again,
        Heather

        Reply
  82. radhika

    Hi AMY,

    Thanks for Reply.

    This is Radhika, My cycle is not 28 days cycle prior to seed cycling , i will check with this month as well in the second phase and will let u know but i see my body getting hot in second phase in last 2 months.

    Reply
  83. Judy K.

    I am so happy to have found your website! I saw a holistic nutritionist who suggested seed cycling for very problematic PMS and cramps. I started 2 months ago and each month have gotten my period on day 14 of my cycle; however, after researching seed cycling, I realize now that she had me taking the wrong combination of seeds (flax/sunflower days 1-14 & pumpkin/sesame days 15-28). So, today I got my period again on day 14 and it also doesn’t coincide with the lunar phase, as full moon is in a week. Should I start over using the proper seed combination again now that I’m back to day 1? The nutritionist also has me taking fish oil and evening primrose oil everyday and it seems that, by your information, that might also be messing me up. Thank you for any help with how to proceed.

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Judy,
      Ack! Yes – doing the seeds in the reverse order can actually induce an early cycle. Since you’ve started your cycle re-start at day 1 using the proper seed combination. Don’t worry too much about the lunar cycle – your body will likely re-adjust to that over the course of a few months. Given your current situation I would also cycle the EPO and Fish oil with the appropriate seeds. Good luck and keep me posted! Also if your cycle continues to start on day 14 even with the proper combination then please be evaluated by your OB-GYN just to make sure that there isn’t anything else going on that just happened to start around the same time. Keep me posted – I’d love to hear what changes!

      Reply
      1. Judy K.

        Hi Dr.Amy, thank you for your reply. Here is my update and new question: I started over with seed rotation on day 1 of my last cycle and used only fish oil until day 14, then switched to sunflower/sesame seeds and evening primrose oil on day 15. I am now on day 45 and have not gotten a period, do I just keep doing the second phase of seeds like I have been doing until I get a period, or should I switch back to pumpkin/flax? I have felt cramps and some PMS for the past 2 weeks but period never came, but I had gotten it every 2 weeks 3 times prior to this cycle (as per my last comment) so maybe I am just still just readjusting from that? Thank you for any tips on how I should proceed with seeds & oils!

        Reply
        1. amyneuzil Post author

          Hi Judy,
          Wow – yes. After so many really short cycles in a row I think your body is probably still adjusting. I’d say just keep going with the second phase of seeds. I don’t know what your cycle was like prior to the every two weeks so go by your own comfort level. My guess would be you’ll skip a cycle (so have your period about 12-15 days from now) but if it carries on too long, then maybe pick up the seed cycling again with the moon phase. Does that make sense?

          Reply
  84. Karen B

    I’d love to start this but have a couple questions.

    #1. What about other seeds – namely chia and hemp seeds? I normally include both in my diet. Can they still be included? If so do they need to be cycled?

    #2: Can I have MORE of the appropriate seeds for that time of the cycle? Like 2T of each or some on some days? Or is that too much? Like tomorrow can I make a “porridge” from 2T each flax and pumpkin seeds (along with some shredded coconut and neutral ground nuts and fruit)?

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Karen,
      Great questions! So – chia seeds have a million benefits, and I love them for the balancing that they do on other hormones (like insulin and blood sugars, as well as leptin – one of the hunger hormones). In terms of hormone effects with estrogen and progesterone we don’t really know. I haven’t ever come across any research in that direction, so I’d say they’re a great addition to diet generally but not so much a part of seed cycling.

      Hemp seeds are strongly hormonal – although research is unclear about which hormones they boost or lower. In terms of smoking marijuana one of the known side effects is increase in estrogen in men (not great) so I would guess that they would be most appropriate in the estrogen part of the cycle with the flax/pumpkin mix, but that is just my best guess. The only research I’ve found on the subject is in mice who have had their ovaries removed to mimic menopause, but the conclusion is that post-menopausal mice who eat hemp seeds have fewer problems than those who don’t. Here’s the link if you’d like to read it. Bottom line is chia can be included anytime, hemp should probably be cycled into the first half of the cycle, which is the estrogenic phase.

      In terms of having more – I love seeds, so I often do have more – I just try to stick with the appropriate seeds for that phase of the cycle, or with neutral seeds like chia. Occasionally though I could tell hormonally that I was overdoing it a little so just listen to your body! Your porridge sounds lovely. 🙂

      Reply
        1. amyneuzil Post author

          Hi Karen,
          I haven’t ever incorporated hemp seeds, but many people do. And as far as I know nuts are neutral so no worries there. Many of the seeds used in other ethnic cooking and ethnic medicines like Traditional Chinese Medicine and Ayurvedic medicine are strongly hormonal though – I will do a post about them in the next few months. 🙂

          Reply
  85. antenniell

    I am seed cycling and love it. My question is, when I do get pregnant / am breastfeeding, what do I do with the seed cycling?

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      So glad you’re enjoying it! I love it too – it feels like such a nourishing thing as a woman. When I got pregnant I switched to just mixed seeds, without cycling. So I kept eating sunflower, flax, pumpkin and sesame seeds (along with chia for it’s other benefits) but didn’t cycle them – I just enjoyed small amounts of all of them to help with baby’s growth and development. I made an equal part mixture that I could quickly add to oatmeal or smoothies or soups and that worked great for me. Now I’m 6 months post-partum and I’m thinking this feels like a good time to start seed cycling again with the lunar phases to help my body transition back to cycling. I hope this helps!

      Reply
  86. Athanasia

    Will using a blend of oils (I like to use Udo’s choice Ultimate oil blend which inclydes flaxseed oil, sunflower seed oil, sesame oil, coconut oil, evening primrose oil, rice germ oils ) during the seed cycling interrupt it? Thank you very much!

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Athanasia,
      I like the Udo’s choice – it’s lovely. I think because it’s got such a good variety that it will be balanced and shouldn’t push the hormones in either direction – so my opinion would be that it’s probably okay unless you’re especially hormone sensitive. Maybe if you’re doing the seed cycling for three months or so with the Udo’s oil and not really seeing changes then switch to a different oil and see if that helps. My guess would be that it won’t be a problem. Keep me posted – I’d love to hear how it goes for you!

      Reply
  87. Jenny

    Is there any concern for the phytoestrogens in the flax seed? I heard if one carries the BRCA gene and they don’t know it (such as myself – I have never been tested), eating anything with phytoestrogens can increase their chances of developing breast cancer. Pls advise. Thanks!

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Jenny,
      There are phytoestrogens in flax seeds, which is part of what makes seed cycling happen. If you have a strong family history of breast cancer (which might indicate the BRCA gene is a possibility) then I”d talk with your doctor before you try any new protocol for hormone balancing – just to make sure. Even one as gentle as seed cycling. If you don’t know your family history then it might be wise to be tested so that you can put your mind at ease – it’s not easy having to be vigilant about everything that might be a phytoestrogen simply because so many herbs, plants and foods are. I hope this helps!

      Reply
    2. susanna brook

      Hi Amy,
      Ive just started the seed cycling and am on day 6 of flax/pumpkin. Do you have to consume the seeds ground, or can i use alternatives such as pumpkin butter,raw pumpkin seeds, flax oil, sunflower oil?
      Also, sesame has been highlighted as an allergen to me, so is there an alternative to this seed for my luteal phase?
      Im super excited to see results 🙂

      Reply
      1. amyneuzil Post author

        Hi Susanna,
        Great questions! Pumpkin butter or pumpkin seeds will work fine because you’re getting the whole seed, but just the oils (like the flax oil or sunflower oil) may not be enough by themselves (although they will certainly boost the process). Whole seeds are best in whatever form. The only one it’s really important to grind is the flax simply because they’re hard to chew so often will stay whole through your digestive tract, which means you’re missing out on some of the benefits. If you can’t do the sesame, then just double up on the sunflower and maybe add the EPO because the sunflower by itself isn’t quite as effective. Keep me posted – I’d love to hear how it works for you!

        Reply
  88. Alexandra

    Hi there. My period is a few days late, as this is only my first month seed cycling. Do I still continue to eat sunflower and sesame until I begin to menstruate?

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Alexandra,
      Yes – generaly continue the sunflower/sesame until your flow starts and then switch over. Most of us have a long follicular phase (lots of estrogen) and a short luteal phase (not so much progesterone) so encouraging more progesterone is typically a good thing. Keep me posted on how this all works for you!

      Reply
  89. Tara Violetta

    Hello I’ve been seed cycling for almost two months. I’ve did the seasame/sunflower seed for 14 days, so I moved to pumpkin/flax For the last five daysbut still no period. what should I do

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Tara,
      Keep following the rhythm of 14 days of sesame/sunflower and 14 days of pumpkin/flax. Even if you’re not seeing a cycle in there hopefully your body is normalizing. Once your period comes, then re-start on day 1 with the flax and pumpkin again. You might just be skipping a month, or if you’ve been really irregular then it may take several months to start to normalize. I hope this helps!

      Reply
  90. Radhika

    Dr Amy,

    I am on Seed cycling since 24 days today is my 25th day and i got my period. now shall i continue with sesame and sunflower seeds or should I shift to pumpkin and flax seeds or should i give break for seeds for 3 days ?

    My menstrual cycle history is very bad i am an amenorrhea patient my age is 28 some times period absence for 3 months .

    Very impressed with your article and tried now i got my period on 25th day please answer my question i am confused which seeds to consume in this 3 days duration.

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Radhika,
      I’d switch back to the pumpkin/flax combo. Your cycle isn’t regular yet, but keeping those first 14 days stable will help. Over time it will shift, but it’s a slow shift. I’m so glad you’re doing these – keep me posted please! I’d love to hear about your experience.

      Reply
      1. Radhika

        Thanks for the reply Amy …

        But I continued with sunflower/sesame seeds till 28th day(4 days) 🙁 and now again switched to pumpkin\flax seeds will keep a note of your reply for next cycle.

        Am really thankful to you after an year i got my period without medication.

        Wonderfull article…. 🙂

        Reply
        1. Radhika

          Hi Amy,

          Today is my 23rd day and i got my period will start with Pumpkin/flax seeds as per ur suggestion.

          But i have few queries regarding my cycle last month i got on 24th day and this month on 23rd which i am worried about why its not 28 days cycle as i am doing every thing as suggested ?

          One more query is there any mistake i am doing on consumption of seeds quantity? why i am asking because as per 1 tbsp around 14 grms each seed as per cycle i am taking my husband saying just to check with quantity as cycle is not 28 days.

          when i am adding sesame/sunflower in the second phase to my diet my body is getting very hot is there any solution for this? No problem with pumpkin\flax seeds.

          I hope you can help me with these queries as i am worried soo much.

          Amy Please reply me ASAP.

          Thanks in Advance .

          Reply
          1. amyneuzil Post author

            Hi Radhika,
            Was your cycle 28 days prior to starting the seed cycling? If not, then give it a few months – this isn’t a quick-fix, it’s more of a gentle long-term balancer. If your cycle was 28 days before starting then there may be something in this that doesn’t agree with you (probably in the sesame/sunflower phase since you’re having the heat reaction). Let me know and we’ll see if we can sort it out. As far as quantity – you’re doing great!

    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Melanie,
      I don’t know of a great direct substitute, but you could just try double the amount of flax seeds. Part of what the pumpkin seeds contribute is zinc so if the double dose of flax isn’t working you could also add a small amount of zinc those days (maybe 15 mg?). Give it a shot and keep me posted.

      Reply
  91. Jessica

    Thank you for this informative article! I was on different forms of oral birth control for over 10 years and am going to incorporate these seeds in hopes to get my period back. I have been off birth control for about 5 months and still have no signs of ovulation or period – do you know about how long it takes people to get menstruation back after long periods of birth control?

    Also I am wondering if the seeds can be taken at different times during the day? I like putting flax in my oatmeal but then save the pumpkin seeds for lunch or dinner. Also, will it negative affect the cycle if I also am using tahini (sesame seed paste) during the flax/pumpkin seed phase of the cycle?

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Jessica,
      Great idea! Honestly if you’ve been on birth control pills for years it can take quite a long time to get a normal cycle back. I’ve seen a number of clients who have gone a year or more without a period. The seeds should help! No problem taking the different seeds at different times during the day – that should be just fine. The tahini might be a bit confusing for your body during the flax/pumpkin phase of things. All of this is small doses of seeds so I’d say if you can avoid it then it’s probably a good idea at first – at least until you get a regular cycle back. Great luck and let me know how it all goes!

      Reply
  92. Darleen Wright

    Dr. Amy

    I am 50yrs old and going through menopause. I have not had a period in almost 20yrs. When I have sex it hurts so the doctor put me on hormones. I started reading on the seed cycling would this help for this situation? If so when should I start the cycling? Thanks

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Great question Darleen!
      The seed cycling can help slowly and is absolutely fantastic for women who are post-menopausal because it helps your body to maintain the natural rhythm you are used to even when you’re not having your cycle. For painful intercourse it will be helpful in the long-run, but it takes a while for your body to build up those tissues so the hormone (especially hormone cream topically to the area) will help much more quickly. Often women will take hormones short term to build up and strengthen the tissues and then use seed cycling long-term to maintain tissue integrity. When you aren’t cycling, just start according to the moon phases because your body will easily fall into that rhythm.

      Reply
  93. Lakshmi

    Hi,
    Dr. Amy,
    I am aged 33, married lady (got married in 2009 August), got aborted twice and till date no kids. I have a problem of endometriosis. I get my period a week ahead of the date since many years. I believe this is due to improper hormonal balance. I want to start this seed cycling process to get my hormonal balance. Can I start it viewing my background?? Need your guidance so that I can start it as I am craving for getting pregnant. Please help. Thanks in advance !!

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Lakshmi,
      Absolutely you can start seed cycling – it’s very gentle and safe for anyone as long as they aren’t allergic to any seeds. With endometriosis usually your estrogen levels are higher than average so anything you can do to boost progesterone will be helpful. Also given your history it would be a good idea to start to talk with your Gynecologist about your intention to get pregnant just to make sure that everything possible is being done. It will take a few months, but let me know how you feel with the seed cycling!

      Reply
      1. Lakshmi

        Hi Amy,
        How are you?? I am very happy & satisfied with seed cycling idea. Definitely seen a difference in my cycles. Sorry couldn’t send you reply soon.
        Need one clarification. Can i continue seed cycling when I get pregnant?? Please let me know..
        Thanks,
        Lakshmi.

        Reply
        1. amyneuzil Post author

          Hi Lakshmi,
          I’m so glad you’re enjoying the seed cycling! All of these seeds have nutritional benefits in pregnancy, but with pregnancy your cycle has stopped and your body is now starting a different rhythm that helps baby to grow. Taking the seeds is still beneficial, but in different amounts. Here’s a whole post about it to get you started. Good luck if you’re trying for a little one – they are such a joy.

          Reply
  94. Samantha

    Hi Dr. Amy,

    I suffer from hypothalamic amenorrhea (period M.I.A. for 7+ months since going off birth control pills) and I wanted to give seed cycling a try in hopes of balancing my hormones. I have also significantly decreased workouts and am trying to gain weight. I make homemade pumpkin seed milk that I drink daily and I was wondering if it might be messing up my estrogen levels?

    I plan on starting seed cycling today on the new moon, but I’m confused on what to do after day 28? There are two days before the next new moon. Do I continue with the sesame seed/sunflower seed or do I switch back to the flax seed/pumpkin seed after day 28?

    Thanks!
    Samantha

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Samantha,
      Great question! So – the pumpkin seed milk (which sounds delicious) may actually get in the way when you start the seed cycling, just because it’s constant input of one of the types of seeds. I’d say if you’re starting the seed cycling then either cycle between pumpkin seed and maybe sunflower seed milk or a neutral unrelated nut milk like cashew or almond, or just switch entirely to a more neutral nut milk. Does that make sense? So in addition to cycling whole seeds, cycle the seed milks as well. In terms of the moon phases – any extra days beyond the 28 in one lunar cycle can either be days off of all seeds, or just continue the sesame/sunflower mix until the new moon and then switch back to flax/pumpkin. I hope this helps and if it’s unclear just write back! Good luck and keep me posted.

      Reply
  95. Sarah C

    I have found seed cycling to be an amazing and easy way to effectively regulate my cycle (for the first time ever in my life!). I have one tiny issue and question, though, that perhaps you could help me with? I put the seeds into my morning smoothies (making the whole thing even easier – no need to pre-grind because of my powerful blender) and I HATE the taste of sunflower seeds. It alters the smoothie taste in a way that I find offensive (and my husband, who shares my smoothies, is allergic to sunflower seeds). Is there another seed (like chia or something?) that would work as well in combo with the sesame? Thank you!

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Sarah,
      Great question! The way I understand it the ideal is to combine sunflower and sesame seeds, but if that isn’t possible for whatever reason (like you hate them – good enough) then you can try switching to just sesame for that half of the month and see if you get the same results. It may be a little bit different for your body but should help to keep things balanced. If it isn’t enough, then you can make the choice of whether or not it’s worth it to go back to the sunflower sesame combo. Keep me posted, I”d love to know how just the sesame works for you!

      Reply
  96. Milla

    Hi there,
    Wow..Im so happy with this article!!! I want to give seed cycling a try since I think its really gonna be a gentle and all natural way to balance my hormones. I have irregular cycles (age 42). I used to have a very regular cycle of 28 days, but the last months my cycles varies from 28 days to 18 and sometimes 14 days. So Im wondering when to start the seed cycling process. Start when my menstruation starts with the flax-pumkin combination and begin on day 15-28 with the sesame-sunflower routine- and sort of ignoring what my body does menstruation-wise? Or just start on new moon (day 1) and follow the mooncalendar?
    Thank you for your advice!!

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Milla,
      I would start with your next menstruation just to follow your body’s rhythm. Eventually it should normalize, but if you’ve always been regular and suddenly there’s a change it could be good to talk to your gynecologist about it as well just to rule out issues. Sometimes stress or other hormone fluctuations can do it, but be sure there isn’t anything you’re missing! Great luck and keep me posted. 🙂

      Reply
  97. Bianca

    Thank you doc!
    So, I’ve noticed that on the flax/pumpkin phase I’ve been a little more constipated and got a few pimples. Any correlation or is it all in my head? I’ve been just fine on the other phase.

    I’m just curious, I’ve always heard not to eat a seed raw, that it needs a slight roast to break some chemical. Any thoughts on that?

    Thank you for the amazing website!

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Bianca,
      So glad you found me! The constipation and pimples could be correlated – both can be symptoms of high estrogen (which is what we’re encouraging with the seeds in this phase of the cycling.) For some people estrogen can be difficult to eliminate and so boosting estrogen, even slightly, can lead to some body changes like this. Usually if someone is experiencing these symptoms I have them start soluble fiber and more water for that half of their cycle to help the body detoxify any unnecessary estrogen. That way we still get a strong estrogen-driven ovulation, but not the digestive changes and pimples. In terms of the roasting thing – honestly it doesn’t make sense to me. One of the biggest benefits to many seeds is the healthy fats they add to our diet, and most of those fats are extremely heat sensitive so roasting runs the risk of destroying one of the main nutritional bonuses – at least in my opinion. Thanks for reading!

      Reply
  98. Amy

    Hi. I was wondering when exactly I should start seed cycling? My periods seem to be in direct opposite to the moon cycle you are suggesting. I menstruate at the Full moon. Should I allign with the moon cycle or should I jump on with my current cycle? It is always regular and pretty predictable. October 27 was the full moon…I began menstruating on the 28th.??? :/

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Amy,
      That is so interesting – it seems like although most women do ovulate at the full moon, it’s really common to be reversed. I would jump on with your cycle instead of with the moon. I’ve had a number of clients who have slowly, over the course of a year or so, shifted it to the ovulation with the full moon by doing this. Great question and keep me posted!

      Reply
  99. Pingback: My Battle With Estrogen...The Aftermath of An HA Diagnosis - Skinny Fitalicious

  100. Rebecca

    Hello, Great article! I am very interested in aligning my cycle with the moon. I was going to try that first but maybe I should do both together, I mean the seed cycling. My cycle is regular but not in sync with the moon. Should I see if I could get in line with the moon before starting the seed cycling??? I am really hoping that by doing one of these, it will raise my progesterone naturally. It is low and my doc suggested I use biodentical progesterone. I did use it for a month during days 14-26 and felt great. But, on my next cycle I started it again on day 14 and I could not take how it was making me feel. Felt like I had to urinate very often, slight cramps, and I got a yeast infection which I never have had. So I stopped. I had read somewhere that those were signs of too much progesterone??? Anyway, just trying to find the balance… I am only 39 and would like to get these hormones under control. Thank you!!

    Reply
  101. Jennifer

    Do you have to soak the seeds first to do this, or can I buy the dried seeds and just grind the appropriate ones together in my coffee grinder in the morning to add to my morning oatmeal/smoothie?

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Hi Linda,
      I don’t really think it matters too much – this is such a gentle nudge towards balance that it’s safe to start at any time in your cycle. Just make sure you’re starting with the appropriate seeds for the appropriate phase. I hope it’s helpful!

      Reply
  102. Kristen

    You initially said the second half should include pumpkin seeds too, but then in the explanation said sesame. Just thought u might want to clarify.

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Awesome catch Kristen – I appreciate it. That was just a brain-fart for me. It is flax/pumpkin for the first half of the cycle and sunflower/sesame for the second. THANKS!!!

      Reply
  103. Nony

    Dr. Amy

    Thanks for a very interesting blog. I have one question about it though. I am not sure about other seeds but sesame and flax seeds are considered warm in nature in our culture and recommended to be taken only during winters. What would you suggest?

    Regards

    Reply
    1. amyneuzil Post author

      Fantastic question!
      So – first thought is that I am not an expert in either TCM or Ayurveda – both of which attend more to the energetics of foods and medicines, so please keep that in mind. My thoughts about it would be to take your own constitution into account. If your nature is very hot and you tend to be affected strongly by warming things then this protocol might not be for you. If you tend to be more chilly or neutral then I would think that for this specific purpose you would be fine taking these foods to help with hormone balance, but make sure that the bulk of your foods are more cooling through the warmer months of the year. Also listen to your body – if you decide to try seed cycling for a few months and notice that you are having more heat-type symptoms then this might not be the right path for you. I hope this helps!

      Reply

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