Guest recipe from @saravdmt
Ayurveda is the “sister” science of yoga that has transformed over centuries, while continuing to address the holistic and nutritional needs of our unique human bodies. As a yoga teacher and psychotherapist in Los Angeles, CA, I value helping women to live their best life, mind-body-spirit. In introducing you to the ancient practice of Ayurveda, I hope you will find increased feelings of well-being daily, including when you have your period. This month’s Lady Box “recipe” is seed cycling, a nutritional practice of eating raw, uncooked seeds daily.
Seed cycling is something simple that can be incorporated into your meal prep and have many health benefits for menstruators. To begin, let's talk basics of our cycle and hormones. Days 1-14 (starting the first day of your period) are called our Follicular Phase and the seeds we eat are meant to support the production of estrogen. Whereas, days 15-28 (or until your next menses) are called Luteal Phase and seed cycling emphasizes supporting our progesterone.
Modern health research on seed cycling has indicated that essential fatty acids and oils of the included seeds helps to subtly stabilize hormone production, improve fertility and reproductive health, and regulate ovulation and menstruation, keeping your cycle consistent, healthy, and you feeling more “balanced” all month long.
Check out the recipe and how I incorporate seed cycling into my daily life below.
Wishing you more healthy monthly flows.
With love and gratitude,
Sara R. Van Koningsveld
Whenever possible use raw, whole or freshly ground, seeds for most nutritional benefit.
Do not toast, roast, or otherwise “cook” the seeds. Do not freeze or use with frozen foods.
Follicular Phase / Day 1-14
1 T flax seed
1 T pumpkin seed
Luteal Phase / Day 15-28
1 T sunflower seed
1 T sesame seed
- Add to your favorite juice at breakfast.
- Add to yogurt or warm breakfast porridge, oatmeal, etc.
- Add as a topping on your salad, veggie dishes, or even warmed soups.
- Consider how to best make this a daily habit. What will be easiest for you? How will the texture factor into your desire/willingness to consume?
- Seed prep: I choose to grind 2 T of each seed I am currently consuming and keep in mini-air tight jars. This allows me to have enough seeds for about 2-3 days at a time.
- Habit: I add to my morning juice, coconut water, plant-based supplement and protein drink (a full recipe for another Lady Box issue). I consume within 1-2 hours as a way to jump-start my metabolism in the morning and keep on the daily routine.
Sara R. van Koningsveld is a Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor and Board Certified-Dance/Movement Therapist living in Los Angeles, CA, where she currently works full-time in non-profit mental health administration and training. She also has a private practice focused on integrative healing through psychotherapy, coaching, and yoga. Sara is pursuing her advanced yoga teaching certification integrating Kundalini, divine feminine, Ayurvedic, and Enneagram studies. In her free time, she enjoys reading novels, hiking in National Parks, dancing in her living room, and creating acrylic paintings for friends and family.
Ketabi, S.R. (2018). Eat feel fresh: A contemporary plant-based Ayurvedic cookbook. Penguin Random House.
Sutton, L. (2019, February 14). How seed cycling supports women’s hormonal health. National University of Natural Medicine. https://nunm.edu/2019/02/seed-cycling/