One thing to be aware of is that our impression of how much milk we are producing isn’t always accurate. I could pump very little, but my daughter would have wet diapers all day, which means she was getting plenty of milk, and not at all the amount I thought I was producing by looking at the pumped bottles.
Don’t assume that a fussy baby is always a hungry baby. Make sure the baby is gaining weight steadily and has wet diapers which are the signs that there is plenty of milk for the little one.
1 – Using food and nutrition to increase breast milk production:
– Oatmeal: Good source of iron among many other nutrients, and helps with let down.
– Brewers Yeast: Great source of protein, iron and supports breasfeeding needs.
– Carrots, Apricots, Spinach and most Green Leafy Vegetables: Which contains phytoestrogens which are believed to promote breast tissue health and lactation and are plant-based chemicals that have similar properties as estrogen.
– Asparagus: Asparagus contain tryptophan, an essential amino acid which may stimulate prolactin (a major hormone involved in lactation) production and improve milk supply.
– Protein, Calcium and Iron Rich Foods help fulfill the mother’s need for those nutrients which is essential for increased milk production. Beans are good source of all three nutrients.
– Mother’s Milk Tea and Lactation Cookies, either from a store or homemade.
– Essential Fatty Acids should be a part of any breastfeeding mother because they are a key component of breast milk and are essential for the production of the hormones that regulate milk production. Omega oils, coconut oil, cod liver oil and Salmon (in moderation because of the mercury in fish) are great sources of essential fatty acids.
2 – Using Herbs to increase breast milk supply
– Supplements such as Mother’s Love are also very popular.
3 – Helpful Activities to increase breast milk production:
– Take two or three days to breastfeed as much as possible all day (and as much as possible at night). It’s is a situation of supply and demand. Increase the demand, the supply will increase as well.
– Physical contact with the baby, hugging, skin to skin, smelling the baby, all help increase your milk supply, so carry, hug and kiss those little ones all day.
– Switch breasts when it seems like the baby is done with one, back and forth until you are sure both are empty (or as close to it as possible, since breast never are really completely empty due to the continuous production of milk)
– Rest (Ironic, I know, but being relaxed and rested helps with the milk let down and reduces stress hormones which diminish milk production)
4 – Avoid things that can decrease breast milk supply
Please, share with us if you have found other ways to help increase your breast milk production so we can all benefit from sharing ideas.