Unleashing the Power of Your Menstrual Cycle: Cycle Syncing and Seed Cycling. The menstrual cycle is a powerful and natural process that occurs in the bodies of women of reproductive age. Despite its importance, many of us were not properly educated about the menstrual cycle and its potential impact on health and well-being. Menstrual cycle knowledge helps us better understand our own bodies, and to make informed decisions about health and fertility.
What is a menstrual cycle?
The menstrual cycle is a complex process that occurs in the female reproductive system. It is regulated by a delicate interplay of hormones, which work together to prepare the body for pregnancy. In this article, we will explore the four phases of the menstrual cycle and the cycle syncing method and how seed cycling is used to biohack and optmise each phase of your menstrual cycle.
Mastering your menstrual cycle by understanding it's phasesOne of the first things to understand about the menstrual cycle is its phases. There are four main phases of the menstrual cycle: the menstrual phase, the follicular phase, the ovulatory phase, and the luteal phase. Each phase plays a critical role in the overall health and functioning of the menstrual cycle.
The Menstrual Phase (Days 1-5)
The menstrual phase is the first phase of the menstrual cycle and is characterized by the shedding of the uterine lining, also known as menstruation. This phase typically lasts between 3-7 days. The menstrual phase is caused by a drop in the levels of the hormones estrogen and progesterone, which signals the end of the previous cycle and the start of a new one.
The Follicular Phase (Days 1-13)
The follicular phase begins on the first day of menstruation and lasts for approximately 14 days. During this phase, the body's estrogen levels begin to rise, signalling the start of the process of ovulation. The ovaries release a mature egg, which travels down the fallopian tube and is available for fertilization. The body also begins to build up the lining of the uterus in preparation for pregnancy.
The Ovulatory Phase (Day 14)
The ovulatory phase is the shortest phase of the menstrual cycle, lasting only about 24 hours. This is the phase when the egg is released from the ovaries and is available for fertilization. This phase is characterized by a surge in the hormone luteinizing hormone (LH) which triggers ovulation. It is also the best time to conceive.
The Luteal Phase (Days 15-28)
The luteal phase is the final phase of the menstrual cycle, lasting approximately 14 days. After ovulation, the ovaries produce progesterone, which causes the uterus to secrete a thick mucus that provides an ideal environment for fertilized eggs. If conception does not occur, the lining of the uterus is shed and the cycle begins again.
The Benefits of Cycle Syncing and Seed Cycling
One of the most popular and beneficial methods of tracking the menstrual cycle is "Cycle Syncing" which is a practice of aligning your lifestyle, nutrition, exercise and daily habits with the hormonal fluctuations that happen in the menstrual cycle. The concept of cycle syncing or aligning one's lifestyle with the different phases of the menstrual cycle is not a new one. It has been practiced by women for centuries as a way to understand their bodies and make informed decisions about their health and wellbeing.
The term cycle syncing itself and the associated techniques is credited to Alisa Vitti, a functional nutritionist, and hormone expert, and author of the book "WomanCode". She developed this technique for her own use and has been coaching and teaching about it to other women. The methods of cycle syncing include tracking menstrual symptoms, and making small changes to the diet, exercise, and stress management practices depending on which phase of the cycle you are in.
For example, during the menstrual phase, women may find that they need more rest and gentler exercise, while during the ovulatory phase, they may have more energy and feel more inclined to engage in more intense exercise. Seed cycling can be considered as an associated technique to cycle syncing as it is a natural approach to managing and optimising the different phases of the menstrual cycle. It involves consuming different types of seeds at specific times during the menstrual cycle to support hormone balance and overall well-being.
The basic idea behind seed cycling is that certain seeds contain nutrients that are beneficial for different phases of the menstrual cycle. For example, during the follicular phase (which starts on the first day of menstruation), consuming seeds high in Omega-3 and lignans, flax seeds and pumpkin seeds, can help to support the production of estrogen.
During the luteal phase (which starts after ovulation and lasts until the start of the next menstrual cycle), consuming seeds high in Omega-6, such as sunflower and sesame seeds, can help to balance progesterone levels.
Understanding the positive impact of balanced hormone levels
Progesterone and estrogen are two hormones that play important roles in the menstrual cycle. When they are in balance, a number of benefits can be seen in the body. One of the most significant benefits of having balanced levels of progesterone and estrogen is that it can help to regulate the menstrual cycle and improve fertility.
Progesterone plays a key role in preparing the uterus for pregnancy, while estrogen plays a key role in stimulating ovulation. When these hormones are in balance, it can increase the chances of conception and a healthy pregnancy. Balanced levels of progesterone and estrogen can also help to reduce the severity of symptoms associated with premenstrual syndrome (PMS) and menopause, such as mood swings, irritability, and depression.
They can also reduce the risk of certain types of cancer, such as breast cancer. Additionally, balanced levels of progesterone and estrogen can improve bone health, by preventing bone loss and reduce the risk of osteoporosis. They also play a role in maintaining cardiovascular health, by reducing inflammation and cholesterol levels. Progesterone and estrogen also affect the metabolism, so a balance of both can help to regulate weight, also can help to improve the skin and hair appearance.
How to practice seed cycling
To practice seed cycling, you can start by consuming one tablespoon of ground flaxseeds and one tablespoon of pumpkin seeds daily during the follicular phase. Then, during the luteal phase, switch to one tablespoon of ground sunflower seeds and one tablespoon of sesame seeds daily. You can consume the seeds by adding them to smoothies, porridge, salads or as a seasoning.
When practicing seed cycling, it’s strongly recommended to use certified organic seeds to ensure that you are consuming seeds that are free from harmful chemicals, pesticides, and other contaminants. It is also important to consume ground seeds as opposed to whole seeds for several reasons.
First, consuming ground seeds makes it easier for the body to absorb the nutrients contained in the seeds. Whole seeds have a hard outer shell that can be difficult for the body to break down, which can limit the amount of nutrients that are absorbed.
Ground seeds, on the other hand, have a larger surface area, making it easier for the body to access the nutrients contained within them. Second, ground seeds are often easier to digest than whole seeds, which can be beneficial for people with gastrointestinal issues.
The menstrual cycle is a complex process that occurs in the female body, controlled by the interplay of hormones. By understanding the different phases of the menstrual cycle, women can gain a better understanding of their bodies and make informed decisions about their health and wellness.
Cycle syncing method and seed cycling can help women optimise their overall wellness, fertility and physical health. It's important to note that every woman is different and what works for one woman may not work for another, a healthcare professional should always be consulted if you have any concerns or issues with your menstrual cycle.
Founder and visionary behind The Seed Cycle. Melissa is a Functional Nutrition Consultant and a Certified Clinical EFT Practitioner. Since starting her EFT and functional nutrition clinic, Mel has helped hundreds of clients release limiting beliefs and mental blocks and find optimal health and happiness.