Do you think you may need to boost your milk supply? It is possible, but lots of moms think they need to improve their supply and it’s just fine. Obviously this list isn’t meant for a substitute for medical advice–if you have any concerns, contact your physician or a lactation consultant. However, there are many foods that have been shown to increase the production of breast milk.
There are foods and herbal additions in your diet which have been said to boost your milk supply are just regular foods you may have in your kitchen anyway! Galactagogues are what promote lactation in humans and other mammals. They could be herbal, food or medication. There is also another term, lactogenic foods.
Regardless of what the term is, here are some of the best recommended foods that will increase milk production–
Water isn’t food per se, but it is so essential to ensure you’ll have an adequate milk supply. Tons North Americans are chronically dehydrated. Be sure you are adequately hydrated—8 glasses (64 ounces) of fluid each day is an absolute must. In the early stages of breastfeeding it’s a necessity to have a bottle of water next to where you’re going to nurse. You may need a lot more as well, keep in mind how much fluid you’re losing while your baby nurses.
Super easy breakfast idea is cooked, rolled oats. Or you can use oat flour in your baking. Or I’m sure everyone’s personal favorite, lactation cookies!
Garlic has been used by nursing mothers for centuries to help boost their milk. It can be used as a flavor enhancer for tons of dishes, or even taken by capsule.
You can buy them roasted to snack on, or use hummus on sandwiches, to dip your veggies, etc. You can also puree them into soups. They’re also a nice vegetarian protein source.
5. Sweet Potatoes
Sweet potato is a major source of potassium. It has energy producing carbohydrate which is needed to fight fatigue. It also contains Vitamin C and B-complex and a muscle relaxant mineral that is magnesium.
Salmon is a great source of EFA (Essential Fatty acids) and Omega-3. Both EFA and Omega-3 are highly nutritious and essential for lactating mothers. Including salmon in your menu boosts lactation hormones and make your milk more nutritious.
Spinach leaves leaves contain iron, calcium and folic acid. Spinach is also low-calorie and can be thrown into any salad, smoothie or soup for an extra nutritional boost.
Like spinach, carrots too have lactation promoting qualities. It contains Vitamin A which complements lactation and boosts the quality of your milk.
Not all nuts are created equal when it comes to increasing breast milk supply. The best choices for giving your lactation a boost are cashews, macadamia nuts and almonds. They are also rich in good fats for you and your baby. Also some nuts have Omega-3, which helps lactation boosting hormones to help produce more milk.
10. Alfalfa Sprouts
Alfalfa is estrogenic, and promotes pituitary function, which is thought to be the way it works for increasing breast milk supply. Consider adding alfalfa sprouts or seeds to your salad or sandwich daily if you can.
Here is a recipe for a lactation smoothie!
Lactation Smoothie (Makes 2)
- 2 Bananas
- 1 cup Frozen Strawberries
- 1/2 cup Steel Cut Oats
- 2 Tbsp Flax Seed
- 2 Tbsp Brewer’s Yeast (Optional, brewers yeast is said to be a milk-booster)
- 1 1/2 cups Almond Milk
- Ice or Frozen Almond Milk Cubes- Varies
- Blend Steel Cut Oats first, then add in additional ingredients.
- Add ice or almond milk cubes. Blend until smooth.