A lot of new mothers have high expectations of how breastfeeding is going to go. While it is certainly a good idea to go into breastfeeding with high hopes, it can be very tough for a new mom when it doesn’t go as planned. One common scenario is you’re not making enough milk. What is scarier than having a low breast milk supply? Drying up completely!
Luckily, there are a bunch of different things you can do to boost the amount of milk that you are pumping, one of which is eating certain foods rich in nutrients that are proven to increase lactation (also known as galactagogues).
Can certain foods actually boost breast milk production?
Yes, you heard that correctly…eating. There are several foods out there that can help build up your breast milk supply. Who knew it could be so easy? Well, it’s not really, unless you have a well-developed palate because not all of the foods out there that increase milk supply are the tastiest. Fennel, for example, is known to improve milk supply but tastes like black licorice. Yuck! Fortunately, there are also some yummier foods on the list that you can add to your diet so you can start seeing an increase in your milk production.
Foods that help increase your breast milk supply:
Oatmeal. Oatmeal by itself is not the most flavorful food out there, but you can always spice it up by adding different fruits or blend in some cinnamon or honey. Not only are oats known to increase lactation but they also are packed with fiber, which gives you a boost in energy. Oatmeal is also extremely inexpensive at your local grocery store.
- Spinach. Full of iron, spinach is a useful vegetable to add as a side dish to any dinner and may aid in seeing a rise in your milk supply. You can also try beet leaves if you are not a fan of spinach.
- Garlic. If you are reeking of garlic then your husband might avoid kissing you for a few hours, but you should see an improvement in your supply by adding garlic to your diet. Plus, garlic is also known to thwart certain cancers.
- Brewer’s Yeast. Throw some in your breakfast smoothie and not only does it operate as a good source of energy, but brewer’s yeast is also known to tell your body to make more milk.
- Fenugreek. This herb works quickly to stimulate milk production as quickly as 24-72 hours after taking it. Fenugreek is most popularly blended in tea.
- Apricots. Need something sweet? Give dried apricots a shot. They can help you produce more milk and are also a good source of calcium. You can even add them to your oatmeal in the morning for a double boost.
Other foods you can add to your grocery list are salmon, almonds, brown rice, and many different types of seeds such as cumin, fennel and black sesame seeds.
If you are still having trouble producing milk, call your doctor or lactation consultant
Hopefully testing out these foods can help you see the results you need when it comes to your milk production. Remember, if you are not seeing the results you want, don’t be afraid to talk to your doctor. If it comes down to it, there are prescriptions out there that can help assist in increasing your milk supply.