Seed Cycling // Phase Two

>> Wednesday, September 2, 2015

(TMI Warning: If you don’t like TTC or menstrual cycle talk, skip this post. Also: I’m not claiming anything I’m doing works or doesn’t work -- it’s all an adventure.)

Today I started my second batch of seeds for Seed Cycling. To recap: Seed cycling might have the power to help regulate hormones. In the first half of your cycle (pre-ovulation), you consume 1 tablespoon of ground flax seeds and pumpkin seeds each day. In the second half (post-ovulation), you consume ground sesame seeds and sunflower kernels each day.

Here are my seeds:

I didn’t plan on writing an update so soon, but I definitely have noticed a few things, so I figured I’d share. Now, I am not doing seed cycling in isolation this month. I’ve sort of put myself on a mini bootcamp of sorts to see if I could help with my late (for me) ovulation and premenstrual symptoms. You see, I was always an ovulate between cycle day 15 to 16 sort of gal. I was that way when I got pregnant with Ada on our first try. And even though I wasn’t charting years ago, all the fertile signs pointed to those days consistently. I think I also had a 12 to 13 day luteal phase back then.

This past year (well, over that now) my cycles were really erratic. I mean, it started before TTC and got really bad last fall. I was ovulating one month on cycle day 11 and the next on cycle day 20, another on cycle day 13 and the next on cycle day 17. This isn’t awfully abnormal because I’ve read it’s “OK” to ovulate before day 21 . . . but the inconsistency worried me.

When I conceived in the winter, I ovulated on cycle day 20. My luteal phase during all this time had been around 10 to 11 days but I was spotting starting around 8 to 9 days, sometimes more. Very strange. No one ever told me why. I had lots of tests. Then when I got pregnant, it didn’t seem to impact stuff. Even when I miscarried, my body held onto the pregnancy, so it seemed progesterone wasn’t an issue.

Ever since the miscarriage and D+C, my ovulation has been between 18 and 20 days consistently for about five months. So, I guess it’s good there’s a regular pattern, but it definitely felt like my body wanted to ovulate sooner. I’d get lots of pains, fertile mucous (sorry!), and weird, erratic temperature patterns despite taking my temp the preferred way. I have no idea what exactly is working . . . but this month I got a positive OPK on cycle day 13! And with a notable temp shift this morning (and monitoring various other signs), I’m pretty sure I ovulated this month on cycle day 15.


Holy moly. That’s awesome.

Along with seed cycling this month, I’m doing a few other “new” things to help regulate myself. Like I wrote at the start of this post, I don’t know if any of this is actually working or if my body is totally in control. I’d like to think there’s a connection. Regardless, I see these things as stuff that will improve my overall health -- not just reproduction -- so, why not?

  • I’m taking Rainbow Light Prenatals daily
  • I’m drinking a green smoothie almost every day
  • I’m avoiding gluten, but not totally abstaining
  • I’m avoiding sugar, but not totally abstaining
  • I’m following this 10K plan, so running approximately 15 miles a week
  • I’m doing yoga 5 to 6 times a week between 15 minutes to 1 hour
  • I am taking a couple teaspoons of Royal Jelly each day*
  • I’m drinking tons of water and herbal tea
  • I’m upping my protein with Greek yogurt, eggs, beans, lentils, oats, etc.
  • I’ve been drinking only a glass of wine or so on weekends
* A reader suggested this to me on Facebook. Stephen and I have both been taking it this month. It tastes like honey. It’s supposedly a superfood and great for fertility. I figure it can’t hurt much. Has lots of B vitamins.

So, I don’t know. Either something or some combination of things is working. Or my body is just being nice this month. I’m not really sure and won’t know until future cycles. I’m hoping my cycle will continue to regulate, and I’ll be interested to see if my luteal phase lengthens at all this month. Since the miscarriage, it’s been around 11 days with a little time on the 12th day before a half day or less of spotting. It’s better than in the fall, so that’s good.

I have a question for those of you who have tried Royal Jelly.

Do you take it your entire cycle? I hear it promotes estrogen. I also hear it’s fine your entire cycle. Other places cite that it’s good throughout pregnancy. Other places say you need to give your digestive system a rest every 15 days. Right now, I decided to take half while I figure it out.

I’ll continue to share my results with seed cycling and other stuff. I hope this is interesting and even helpful to some of you with similar struggles!

And if you’re looking for an easy way to grind your seeds -- use your COFFEE GRINDER (here’s the one we have)! I don’t know why I didn’t start doing this until now. The seeds get really nice + powdery. Perfect for blending into smoothies. My friend Ellie shared that a wonderful way to clean out your grinder is with some uncooked rice.

Happy Wednesday!

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