Addressing Hormonal Imbalances Through Seed Cycling
rē•working our diets with Beeya Wellness.
We tend to write off symptoms like fatigue, mood disorders, and weight fluctuations as the norm. All of these could be signs of a hormonal imbalance within our bodies. Rather than treating each of these side effects individually, Yasmin Nouri and Kaya Purohit of Beeya Wellness aim to get to the root of the issue holistically and approachable by supporting hormonal health with seed cycling.
What is seed cycling?
Beeya Wellness’ name is inspired by the very nature of the practice upon which it is based. In Sanskrit, “bija” (pronounced “bee”) means seeds, a nod to Purohit’s ancestral roots in ayurvedic medicine. Seed cycling uses four types of seeds rotated in two phases during a 28-day menstrual cycle to support an optimal balance between estrogen and progesterone. The process is put into practice with Beeya Wellness’ organic seed blends that correspond to each phase, which can be used on their own or in a variety of recipes.
Purohit, who earned a master’s in nutrition, explains that food is “powerful information” that helps our body function — whether it’s fats that help our brain, fiber that aids our gut health, or protein that serves as chemical building blocks. “My mentor told me health isn’t created in the doctor’s office. It’s created in our kitchens, on our farms, our grocery stores, and in our communities,” she adds. “This was really empowering to hear because it means that, to a certain extent, we are in control of our health. At Beeya, we believe in using the medicine that nature gave us.”
Normalizing conversations around hormonal imbalances
Nouri’s firsthand experience partly inspired Beeya Wellness’ mission with hormonal imbalances. When Nouri went off birth control in 2020, she experienced symptoms that she now recognizes as “post-birth control syndrome,” such as acne, breast tenderness, mood swings, and painful periods.
After Nouri initially brushed off her doctor’s recommendation to try seed cycling, Purohit, her sister-in-law, recommended the practice again after studying it in graduate school.
“Our hormones control so many different aspects of our health. I used to be so confused as to why I would spend a week every month feeling awful,” Nouri says. “I didn’t feel like myself a week out of each month – that’s a lot of time when you add it up. This takes a toll on our physical and mental health. Once I realized that it was my hormones and there was something I could do about it, my whole life changed.” As a result, Beeya Wellness was born.
As Nouri notes, talking about hormonal health, including imbalances, still feels taboo in many ways. But we all have hormones, and many experience the same daily struggles. “Talking about it, and talking about our options, is empowering,” she says.
Understanding the signs of hormonal imbalance
There are several types of hormones produced by our bodies, ranging from thyroid, sex, and stress hormones to insulin, too. Purohit says that many individuals associate hormones with two ends of the spectrum: pubescence or menopause. A constant flow of hormones regulates us; when we’re out of balance, our bodies will let us know. “Everything we do – what we eat, how much we sleep, how we live – all impact our hormones,” Nouri explains.
Whether we’re conscious of the symptoms or not, hormonal imbalances manifest in our physical, mental, and emotional health. Often, these symptoms are treated with a pill or identified under signs of PMS, perimenopause, or menopause. “Just because these symptoms are common doesn’t mean they’re normal,” says Purohit.
In conversations Nouri has had with women’s health experts about hormone irregularities, common themes arise. These include blood-sugar imbalances, gut dysbiosis, lack of community, over- or under-exercising, nutritional deficiencies, stress, and toxins. Acne, mood disorders such as anxiety and depression, bloating, brain fog, constipation, cravings, decreased libido, fatigue, hair loss, hot flashes, insomnia, skin issues, weight gain, and weight loss can all be signs of hormonal imbalances.
“The symptoms are so far and wide, and it takes a lot of investigation to discover the root cause,” Nouri adds. “We have to be our own advocates. Doctors have really difficult jobs and limited time to spend with patients to get to the root of their ailments. That’s why we started Beeya — to help women understand that there are other ways to get to the root cause of hormonal imbalances, but it requires a holistic approach.”
How to start seed cycling with Beeya
Beeya’s Phase One blend supports healthy estrogen during the first half of the menstrual cycle. This blend uses organic flax and pumpkin seeds rich in fats and nutrients. Phase Two contains organic sesame and sunflower seeds to support the balance of estrogen and progesterone. The blend also includes chamomile to boost gut health and our mood and hemp seeds for added protein and healthy fats.
Nouri and Purohit recommend using the blends in brownie batter protein bombs (recipe below) for perimenopause and menopause symptoms, leveraging magnesium-rich chocolate to help promote a happy mood.
“Typically, PMS results from too much estrogen in relation to progesterone,” Purohit explains. “There is something about cycling off and on these two blends which has helped thousands of women regulate their period and help to reduce symptoms of PMS, perimenopause, and menopause.” If the founders of Beeya Wellness have their way, this will be the experience of countless other women. “There are so many life stages in which women feel forgotten,” Purohit tells rē•spin. “Every stage of a woman’s life is equally important and critical in different ways. At the core of it all, we want women to feel their best no matter what life stage they’re in.”
Brownie Batter Protein Bombs
Prep Time: 10 mins
Chill Time: 20 mins
- ½ cup chickpeas, rinsed and drained
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 3 Tbsp maple syrup
- Four scoops of Beeya divided.
- ¼ cup peanut butter
- 2 Tbsp cacao
- Pinch of sea salt
- ¼ cup melted dark chocolate
Method of Preparation:
- Combine the chickpeas, vanilla, maple syrup, three scoops of beya (reserve 1 for the coating), peanut butter, cacao, and sea salt in a food processor.
- Mix until smooth; you may need to scrape down the sides.
- Scoop and roll the chocolate chickpea mixture into eight balls, place on a parchment paper lined plate and transfer to the freezer for 15 mins.
- Stir the remaining scoop of Beeya into the melted dark chocolate (if your chocolate is very thick, then it will help to add 1 tsp of melted coconut oil for easier dipping), then coat each brownie bomb in the chocolate Beeya mixture. Place back on the paper-lined plate, drizzle with any remaining chocolate, and transfer to the freezer to set.
- Once set, enjoy as you please; each bomb contains ½ scoop of beeya. They can be stored in the fridge for up to a week or in the freezer for a month.
This recipe can be made with either phase of Beeya. To learn more about seed cycling, visit www.beeyawellness.com.