Good morning! Happy Thursday!
I’m back on the flax train after slacking last month. If you remember, I’ve done seed cycling for several months now, and it was working great. My periods were regular, my skin looked amazing, my mood was mostly steady, and I didn’t have too many PMS symptoms, except for night sweats, which I’m starting to think I will have for my entire life. (I get them right before my period when estrogen levels drop. Apparently, I’m just really sensitive to the change.) Last month, I continued to take the recommended supplements, but I skipped out on the flax and other seeds in my diet, and I definitely noticed a difference. My skin was dry and broke out. I felt much more exhausted and moody. And my PMS symptoms sucked this month (weepy, sore breasts, cramps). I’m assuming the lack of flax is what made things go haywire, so I’m back on the flax train with the hope that it’ll be a better month.
This morning, I made Banana Flax Oatmeal for breakfast. I usually make overnight oats and then just heat them up in the morning, but I didn’t think of it until I was ready to eat this morning. So, I used this little microwave hack and made a double batch, so I have oats ready to go tomorrow morning. I use this awesome Pyrex bowl with lid to make my oats, so I don’t have to worry about them exploding all over the microwave. If you’ve read CNC long enough, you know I’ve had more than a couple oatmeal explosions over the years!
Microwave Banana Flax Oatmeal
Makes 2 servings
Directions: Combine ingredients in a microwave-safe dish with a cover. Place dish in microwave and cook for three minutes. Stir and fully mash bananas. Divide between two bowls. Eat!
FYI: Freshly ground flaxseed work best, so I use this mini coffee bean grinder. I make a small batch every few days (and store them in the fridge), and it takes like 60 seconds start to finish to make a new batch. It’s definitely worth it to get the best effects!
After breakfast, I got Quinn and myself ready for the day. I drop him off at daycare. It’s “mix and match” day, so he is rocking camo pants with a striped shirt and yellow frog socks. He looks so cool.
I head to the gym for a workout, which was a (mostly) body-weight sweat session, which I am starting to appreciate more and more nowadays. Sometimes, the HEAVY weights are just too much for my body. Of course, I love a good, heavy workout, but it’s nice to have a break every once in awhile.
I stayed after class to do some glute work before heading home. As Mal says: ” It’s legging season!” Haha!
Question of the Day
Do you have hormonal issues? Have you tried seed cycling?
Related: I’ve told a number of real life girlfriends about seed cycling, and they are so skeptical of it. I know it sounds super hippy-dippy, but I’m a believer! Plus, what do you have to lose? If anything you add some healthy fats to your diet! 🙂
i definitely should try this seed cycling business – i don’t know much about it so it’s time to do my research! i usually add ground chia to my oats and smoothies, but TJ’s has a great ground flaxseed so maybe i need to start switching things up! 🙂
How do you know what was contributing to your dry skin and PMS? It seems like so much is changing in your diet and beauty regimine (LEAP, Paleo, cycling, beauty counter, etc.) that it would be hard to attribute any differences to one thing.
I’m not totally sure. It could also be the new protocol that I’m doing. It was just the one thing that fell by the wayside this month, so I assume it was that?
I keep hearing such amazing things about seed cycling but still haven’t given it a try. I’m on a hormonal birth control because of severe endometriosis and quite honestly, I’m terrified to go off of it because my periods get so heavy and I get such horrible migraines. (Sorry totally TMI) But I love that it works for people so one of these days, when I get brave and decide to finally ditch the BC, I’m going to get on the seed cycle train!
The naturopath I worked with is all about seed cycling. Hippy dippy shmippy… if it works for you, stick with it! 🙂
lol at Mal’s comment! I feel like it’s legging season year round 😉
I need to do some more research about seed cycling…I stopped taking the pill about 3 months ago after taking it for 10 years…so I’m still trying to figure out what is “normal” for my body.
That is very strange that flax has worked for you! I generally try to avoid Flax because of its estrogenic qualities!
Please tell me more!
The flaxen estrogen mimics your body’s natural form of estrogen and causes an imbalance in hormones. Your body makes three types of estrogen, and flax makes the not so great ones.
I actually think it’s just the opposite, which is why the seed cycling protocol is recommended.
@Tina: Linda is actually right. There’s quite a bit of research on flax and it’s effect on hormones because it is a type of phytoestrogen. I’m guessing though, when used in the context of seed cycling, you are trying to increase your estrogen for parts of your cycle, which is why you are using flax.
For night sweats, I take Nordic naturals fish oil with primrose oil (my nutritionist says the primrose oil is the key) once in the morning and once at night and it has helped me SO much! Just thought I’d share
I’ve been reading and enjoying your blog for years. I’ve felt for you as I’ve watched you struggle with ulcerative colitis. Seeing all of the dietary and lifestyle changes you’ve made to try to get a handle on it has been extraordinary. I know it must be incredibly difficult to have hyperfocus your diet in so many ways. It looks frustrating.
One thing I’ve never seen you question is your exercise regimen. Constantly putting your body under the type A strain of strenuous exercise keeps you looking great (and you do!), but maybe it’s having detrimental health effects? This idea popped into my mind and I did a simple Google search, “Can strenuous exercise be bad for you?” and the first thing that popped up was an article from 2017 about strenuous exercise leading to a leaky gut. I don’t think there’s much research conducted on this topic, so I hope that doesn’t allow you to convince yourself it’s not worth pursuing. But if you’re willing to go after your diet so hard (and I’ve seen you try to make lifestyle changes as well), maybe you should consider your exercise?
I’ve read the same thing, and I definitely think I was overdoing it back in the day. I actually have a blog post coming about that next week, but I hardly work out nowadays, and my workouts are almost always less than 30 minutes. I’ve definitely taken it down a notch over the years for just this reason!
I loved this recipe, instead of flaxseed I can put quinoa? I’m not much of a linseed fan.
I am convinced that seed cycling helped me get pregnant! After being on the pill for three years, I stopped and has two periods two months apart so was irregular. My naturopath strongly suggested seed cycling and I got pregnant the next month. Pretty amazing!
So glad to hear it worked for you!!
@Tina: Can you do a follow up next month to discuss how it went? I don’t know how many months it takes to have an impact so maybe that’s not long enough but I am interested.
I read your blog post about seed cycling and decided I had nothing to lose. I am in pre-menopause and was having a 3 month long period. I went on the seeds and it stopped within a week. I know it could have just be a coincidence, but it made a believer out of me.
And anything that makes this 50 year old skin and joints feel better is awesome to me!
I saw the comment about the primrose oil, I haven’t been taking it like the protocol I follow says to. I think I’ll add it in since the night sweats have been killing me.
That’s great that you’re seeing results!
Have you ever tried the MyFLO app? It’s an amazing tool to sync with your cycle and provides exercise, food, and general life suggestions based on where you are in your cycle. It’s been a HUGE help in my hormone balancing journey myself! Women often don’t realize that we’re 25% different emotionally and what we need nutritionally throughout the 4 phases of our cycle and this app takes the guess work out of all of it. Best 1.99 I ever spent.
I have it, but need to figure out how to adjust the cycle since now all of the info is off. It’s definitely a great tool! Super interesting and helpful!