How to Increase Your Breast Milk Supply?
The postpartum period is not an easy time for new mothers. Besides the whole new world of motherhood, breastfeeding is one of the biggest challenges that new mums face. Ideally, every woman wants to have enough milk to keep her little baby full and satisfied at all times. But sometimes that’s not the case. Thankfully, there are ways to increase milk production quickly.
Many new mums swear by breast milk biscuits when it comes to improved lactation and overall breastfeeding. Many new moms lack milk to feed their baby and sometimes the reasons are unknown. Lactation cookies can be the solution to this problem. Containing galactagogues, breast milk biscuits can help increase the levels of prolactin in the mother’s body. Prolactin is a hormone responsible for milk production. So, the higher the levels of prolactin, the more milk the new mama will have.
Besides galactagogue, lactation cookies also contain whole oats, brewer’s yeast, wheat germ, flaxseed meal, fennel, fenugreek, nuts, chickpeas, almonds and chia seeds. The exact recipe depends on the brand you end up buying since they all vary. The recommended dosage of the breastfeeding cookies is 2-3 cookies a day. You need to keep in mind that although they are made from natural ingredients they’re still cookies and contain calories.
If, on another hand, you want to make the breastfeeding biscuits on your own, make sure you include an organic linseed meal which is one of the key ingredients in all lactation cookies. Lotus linseed meal is a source of omega-3 fats, dietary fibre and antioxidants as well as vitamins E and B, calcium, iron and potassium. Also, include brewer’s yeast that contains proteins and B complex vitamins and is made from 100% inactive yeast. Along with the cookies, you can try the hot chocolate lactation mix and the shakes that come in many flavours – from chocolate and vanilla to strawberry.
Add Lactation Tea to the Mix
Lactation tea is a blend of special herbs that together are believed to increase the milk supply in mothers. It can be used as a supplement during the postpartum period. Among the herbs found in the lactation, tea blend is fenugreek, blessed thistle, fennel, stinging nettle, goat’s rue, moringa and milk thistle. And this blend works more for some women than it does for others. There isn’t 100% certainty that the tea can help in increasing milk production although it helps in many cases.
Lactation tea is brewed the same way as other teas are. And the recommended daily intake is from 1-3 cups a day. It is believed that even if the herbs don’t help increase the milk supply, the extra liquids you drink may do the trick. But, if over time you don’t notice results you should try another method instead of increasing the dosage.
Make Sure You Eat Well
Proper diet also plays a big role in the ability of the mother’s body to produce milk. So, this is something you need to pay attention to and one of the reasons to try gourmet food. Everything a mother eats affects the quality and quantity of breast milk. For that reason, try to include as many protein foods as possible.
You should eat protein food 2-3 times a day and that includes eggs, dairy, meat, fish, beans, nuts and seeds. Along with that, you need to eat vegetables as much as you can, especially dark green and yellow vegetables and two servings of fruits. Whole grains should also be included in your diet in the form of whole wheat bread, pasta, oatmeal and cereal.
Many new mothers are concerned about losing the baby weight fast and put some sort of restrictions on themselves when it comes to food, but that’s not the smartest thing to do if you want to produce enough quality milk for your baby. Additionally, breastfeeding burns around 500-600 calories so this combined with food restriction can have a bad outcome.
You should pay special attention to caffeine and alcohol. Most babies aren’t bothered by caffeine but you should have a limit. And when it comes to alcohol, it doesn’t stay in your milk so as long as you’re sober you can breastfeed, but again, be careful with how much you drink.
Breast Massage Can Help Too
Breast or lactation massage can help with a number of problems related to breastfeeding, starting from producing a small amount of milk, to clogged milk duct and mastitis. There isn’t a special technique that’s being used for performing a lactation massage, quite, on the contrary, it’s the same as any other massage but mothers find it quite beneficial.
Lactation massage can help increase the quality of the milk if performed on a regular. It helps reduce pain related to breastfeeding and improves milk flow. It can also prevent (to some point) stretch marks and saggy breasts. You can use natural oil for a better effect. That includes coconut or olive oil. The duration of the massage should be about 30 minutes using gentle circular motions. You can include the lactation massage in your daily routine or do it two to three times a week.
Relax and Get Some Rest
Stress is the number one cause for many health problems and that includes breastfeeding too. Mothers that aren’t well-rested, that suffer from sleep deprivation and are stressed are more likely to underperform when it comes to breastfeeding. To prevent that from happening you should start taking small naps during the day, preferably at the same time as your baby does. Cut back on caffeine and avoid staying up late at night. And try to manage stress, because it can affect your sleep, your milk production and your mental well-being.
Never be too shy to ask for help. Sometimes you need time for yourself too, so in order to get that you can arrange for a babysitter or someone close to watch the baby. It can be beneficial for both of you because babies can feel when their parents are stressed and that influences them too.