A mother always wants the best for her child. And if it is a newborn baby, the care and concern increase tenfold. As I’m sure you are already aware, it’s best if newborns only consume breast milk for the first few months of their life to ensure proper growth and development, immune system function, and bonding. If you feel that your body isn’t producing enough milk for your little one, don’t worry. Perhaps all you need is to pay a little more attention to the foods you eat to increase breast milk supply naturally.
If you are wondering why you don’t have enough breast milk supply to satisfy your little one, here are some possible reasons:
But, why is breastfeeding so important? These facts will tell you why.
Breastfeeding is of great significance in the early years for your baby. If you feel that your breast milk supply is not up to par, all you need to do is start consuming more of the following foods.
Fenugreek seeds are one of the best ingredients that can increase breast milk supply. They are good sources of phytoestrogen and also exhibit galactagogue properties in nursing mothers. (Galactagogue is just a fancy word for foods or drugs that increase the production of breast milk.)
Drink torbangun tea or soup. You can also add it to other foods and consume daily.
Torbangun is widely used in Bataknese traditional cuisine, and it’s gradually becoming known in the West. This is another herb that has proven to increase the production of breast milk.
1/2 cup of freshly extracted drumstick juice
Consume half a cup of freshly extracted drumstick juice once daily.
Drumsticks are a rich source of many nutrients that help in stimulating the mammary glands to produce more milk. Consuming drumstick juice also improves blood circulation, which, in turn, increases your breast milk supply (3).
Fennel is another herb that is used as a galactagogue for nursing mothers. The seeds are phytoestrogens, i.e., they mimic estrogen, a hormone that is known to increase the production of breast milk.
Milk thistle supplements
Take 2 to 3 milk thistle capsules daily.
Milk thistle is a flowering plant that was used in the ancient times to increase the production of breast milk. As a phytoestrogen, it displays estrogenic activity, which helps in increasing the breast milk supply.
Goat’s rue supplements
Take goat’s rue supplements daily to increase your breast milk supply.
Goat’s rue is a popular galactagogue in France and other European countries. It not only stimulates the development of mammary duct tissue but also has lactogenic properties, i.e., it promotes breast milk production.
Goat’s rue might cause hypoglycemia (low blood sugar). Hence, consult your doctor before using these supplements and don’t skip meals if you decide to take it.
Peeled garlic cloves
Garlic has lactogenic properties that help increase breast milk supply in mothers. It’s an antifungal and it is reported to strengthen the bond between the mother and infant.
Herbal teas like anise tea or caraway tea
Drink 2 to 3 cups of anise or caraway tea daily.
Herbs like anise and caraway are phytoestrogens that exhibit estrogenic properties. They act as galactagogues and also clear clogged milk ducts, thus increasing breast milk supply.
Wild-caught cooked salmon
Consume a portion of cooked salmon 2 to 3 times every week.
Salmon is a rich source of omega-3s and many essential fatty acids, which make it a great option to increase your breast milk production naturally. It is also rich in DHA, one of the most important components of breast milk, which aids brain development of your child.
Eat wild-caught salmon, which is lower in mercury and other toxins than commercially raised salmon.
A bowl of cooked oats
Consume a bowl of cooked oats daily.
Oats are rich in fiber and iron, which reduce cholesterol and increase breast milk production. They also induce relaxation, which, in turn, helps increase lactation. These properties make oats one of the best options to increase the supply of breast milk.11. Whole Grains
Whole grains like corn, quinoa, and wheat
Increase your intake of whole grains like wheat, quinoa, and corn.
The intake of whole grains not just helps increase the production of breast milk but also ensures that your infant is getting all the necessary nutrients for its growth and development.
Note: Many people are avoiding gluten grains these days, so you may want to limit your intake of wheat.
Almond milk (unsweetened)
Consume a cup of almond milk 1 to 2 times daily.
Almond milk is a rich source of omega-3 fatty acids that help increase breast milk production. Hence, nursing mothers consume almond milk regularly to improve both the quantity and quality of their milk.
Carom seeds are another excellent traditional remedy that can help in naturally increasing the supply of breast milk.
Now that you have an idea about what to eat for increasing breast milk supply, let’s look at the foods that you need to avoid as they may decrease breast milk production.
For centuries, midwives have given women advice on what to consume when they are ready to stop breastfeeding and allow their breast milk to dry up. But don’t use these foods in any quantity if you are still breastfeeding. The following foods can decrease breast milk supply:
In addition to avoiding these foods, follow the tips mentioned below.
Now that you know what you need to do to produce more breast milk, go ahead and start consuming the herbs and foods mentioned in this article. They will ensure that you are producing sufficient milk to satisfy your little one. If you are aware of any other foods that might help, please leave a comment in the box below.
How will I know if I am producing enough breast milk?
You will learn to recognize the sigh of contentment when your baby has taken enough milk. Feeding should be at least 6 to 8 times daily with no signs of pain or discomfort after the first few swallows. At the beginning of feeding, your breast will feel tense and engorged, even leaking. After a good session, they will be soft and feel like your baby has emptied them properly. If they don’t feel completely empty, try pumping them with a breast pump and hold that milk for a future feeding.
Can breast massage help with milk production?
Yes, massaging your breasts can improve milk production. A breast massage clears the milk ducts and causes the milk to flow more freely. And this triggers your milk glands to produce more milk. Some women are advised to begin pumping their breasts even before delivery to stimulate milk production.
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