If you think about it, a seed contains all the nutrition required to sprout a new plant. Seeds are nutrient-dense and have many benefits as part of a healthy diet. One potential use of seeds is as part of a hormone-balancing diet.
If you are curious about how to balance hormones, seed cycling for hormones, and healthy seeds to add to your diet, this article is for you! Keep reading to learn more about:
- Health benefits of chia seeds
- Health benefits of flax seeds
- Health benefits of sunflower seeds
- Health benefits of pumpkin seeds
- Health benefits of sesame seeds
- What is seed cycling?
- Using seeds to Balance hormones
Are Seeds an Important Part of a Healthy Diet
Whether you are an omnivore, vegan, paleo, or following another strategy, incorporating seeds is a wonderful addition to your daily nutrition.
Vital Nutrients in Seeds
Seeds contain essential nutrients, including:
- Vitamin E
Health Benefits of Seeds
Because of their unique combination of protein, healthy fats, and fiber, seeds support blood sugar balance, heart health, metabolic health, and hormonal health. Learn more about the health benefits of nuts and seeds here.
Easy Ways to Incorporate Seeds Into Your Diet
Some of our favorite ways to increase seeds in the diet include:
- Adding seeds or seed butters (like tahini) to smoothies
- Using them as a salad topper
- Baking with them
- Snacking on Scott’s Protein Balls, of course
Seeds and Hormonal health
Many factors, including your diet, influence hormones. Seeds support balancing hormones and the menstrual cycle because of the nutrients they contain. For example, flax and sesame seeds contain lignans, which help modulate the estrogen response. Zinc from pumpkin seeds supports progesterone production, and selenium from sunflower seeds is helpful for fertility and hormone detoxification.
How to Balance Hormones with Seeds
Seeds are hormone-balancing foods. Including more seeds in your diet provides nutrients for healthy hormone metabolism. Helpful seeds include:
Chia Seeds - Chia seeds are rich in fiber and omega-3 fats. Read more about chia seed benefits here.
Flax Seeds – Flax seeds are rich in lignans, fiber, and healthy fats.
Sunflower Seeds - Sunflower seeds are an excellent selenium and vitamin E source.
Pumpkin Seeds - Pumpkin seeds are a good source of zinc.
Sesame Seeds - Sesame seeds contain lignans, zinc, and selenium.
Fact or Fiction: Seed Cycling
Seed cycling is a popular practice of eating specific seeds during the different menstrual cycle phases.
The follicular phase of the menstrual cycle is the first half of the menstrual cycle, beginning on day 1 when you start your period and lasting to ovulation. In this phase, estrogen rises.
The luteal phase of the menstrual cycle is the second half of the menstrual cycle, beginning at ovulation and lasting through the last day of the cycle. In this phase, progesterone rises.
Proponents of seed cycling claim that the practice supports period symptoms like PMS, helps jump-start an absent menstrual cycle (amenorrhea), improves fertility, and corrects hormonal imbalances. But what does the science say?
What is Seed Cycling? + How Does Seed Cycling Work?
Seed cycling involves eating two tablespoons of ground flax and pumpkin seeds during the follicular phase of the menstrual cycle for estrogen support. Then, during the luteal phase, you eat two tablespoons of ground sunflower and sesame seeds for progesterone support.
Can Seed Cycling Balance Hormones? + Is Seed Cycling Clinically Proven?
There isn’t any published data on the effectiveness of seed cycling. However, eating seeds in your diet is still beneficial for hormonal health. Plus, if you want to try seed cycling, there isn’t any harm from doing so. It may help you eat more seeds and get in touch with your menstrual cycle.
Seeds are one of the top foods that balance hormones in females. While there isn’t a need to follow a seed cycling routine, adding more seeds to your diet provides vitamins, minerals, and phytonutrients that support hormonal health.