Being able to produce enough breast milk is what worries a mother. Is it enough? Is my baby getting enough nutrition? And that are some of the reasons why many mothers quit breastfeeding. If you feel like you are not producing enough milk, it is best to consult your doctor or lactation consultant first to check if your supply is enough for your baby or your supply is indeed low. If you are searching for ways to increase your breast milk supply, then you have come to the right post! 😆 The answer is galactagogues!
What is galactagogue? Galactagogue is a food or substance that promotes or increases the flow of mother’s milk. So where can you find it? Here I’ve listed top 6 galactagogues that you can include in your diet!
#1 Oatmeal and barley
These two contain phytoestrogens and a fiber called beta-glucan that can increase prolactin (a vital hormone for milk production) level in the body. Oats are great for weight loss too since they are high in fiber that will make you feel full, being in rich in complex carbs, protein, and antioxidants which are important for new mommies whether or not they are breastfeeding!
#2 Fennel (Jintan manis)
Both fennel plant and its seeds contain phytoestrogens and have been used traditionally to amp up the breast milk supply. The fennel bulb can be eaten raw with salad, stir-fried with other vegetables, or even cooked with your choice of meat! The seeds, on the other hand, can be enjoyed with tea or included in baking such as cookies or bread!
Nuts like almonds, cashews, and macadamia are typically used to help nutrify mothers. Almonds especially are rich in calcium and magnesium which help in sustaining the milk supply when mothers are on menses. They are also a great source of iron, protein, and healthy fats. Nuts are best eaten raw but of course you can get creative by baking or roasting them to make a trail mix!
Since hundreds of years ago, dates have been given to new mothers in Middle Eastern and Chinese cultures. Other than supporting lactation, dates are known to help provide energy and aid in digestion as they are high in fiber. Dried dates can be consumed as snacks with nuts or used in baking or included in cereal! Or you can even find dates flavoured milks in the market!
#5 Fenugreek seeds (Halba)
It is one of the popular galactagogues that have been proven in studies to show a significant increase in breast milk production. Thousands of mothers truly swear by it! However, they need to be taken in moderation as there are minor side effects like smelly sweat and urine and gas/bloating in infants. But worry not, even taken in a small amount, it can double the breast milk production in just a few days! Fenugreek can be incorporated in tea, treats, and even dishes.
#6 Green leafy vegetables
Leafy vegetables such as spinach, kale, and mustard greens are a great source of minerals such as iron, calcium, and folic acid. These greens have vitamins aplenty that can help boost your breast milk supply! They are also the easiest to get fresh in the market. You should include at least one portion of green veges in your diet on a daily basis.
And now, I know mothers do not have all the time in the world to cook and bake especially when the little baby is around! To help you with that, you can browse on Babydash website to get some readymade milkboosters packed with all the nutrients you need!
We know mothers are constantly worrying about their breast milk production. By educating yourself more and following best practices on breastfeeding, consulting your baby’s doctor or a lactation consultant as well as adding galactagogues in your diet do work well in most situations. But then again, always do what’s best for you and your baby, mommy ❤