Best Foods to increase Breast Milk in Lactating Moms

Approximately 75% of new moms start nursing their newborns, but many of them discontinue either partially or entirely within the first few months. One of the most prevalent reasons is the insufficient milk supply. A baby’s only source of immune-boosting substances, protein, and other nutrients necessary for its general growth in breast milk. Your breast milk will be of the highest possible quality for your child as long as you are healthy. Through proper diet and nutrition, breast milk supply and quality can be increased. Check here to know few tips and foods to increase breast milk supply.

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Signs of low breast milk supply:

1. Wet/dirty diapers:

Having very fewer wet diapers in a day. On average, the baby should have around 6 to 8 wet diapers, indicating that they are healthy and well fed.

Also, check Natural remedies for Diaper rashes in Babies

2. Pooping:

Babies who still feed on breast milk should poop more often and in a week the colour should change from tar-black to greenish-yellow, orange to a more grainy or seedy appearance.

Breastfeeding should be easy and comfortable, if not it states that the milk supply isn’t enough which causes pain or discomfort while nursing.

Also, check Baby Poop colour: what does it mean?

3. No proper weight gain:

It is normal to lose 7- 10% of their weight in first few days, but they should return to their birth weight after 10-14 days. Improper weight gain can be a sign of low breast milk being fed to the baby.

4. Feeding rate Less:

If the baby doesn’t feed at least 8-12 times a day, then there are chances that the milk produced is not adequate for the baby. As the breastmilk gets easily digested babies often wanted to feed more.

5. Not feeling empty:

After feeding your baby, your breast should feel softer and empty. Improper emptying of breasts can affect the milk supply. The baby doesn’t latch off/come off on its own and keeps on sucking even after being completely fed. This affects the milk supply.

6. Signs of dehydration:

Babies show signs like dark urine, dry lips, and sunken eyes which indicates that they are not being fed properly. The baby’s cheek should be full while nursing which shows that they are drinking the milk actively.

Factors affecting breast milk supply:

  • Improper latching or weak sucking
  • Baby feeding less than 8-16 times in a day can impact the milk supply as it depends on how well the breast drains.
  • Providing babies with water or formula milk after nursing creates a habit of sucking the bottle. This affects the feeding rate and milk supply as the babies just want that sucking feeling and are not actually hungry to be fed.
  • Introducing solid foods before 6 months of age
  • Starting the birth control pill early.
  • Stress and tiredness.
  • Not drinking enough water or overconsumption of water.
  • Using breast flanges that are not of proper size.
  • Care must be taken while using nipple shields and pacifiers
  • Pregnancy

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Foods to increase breast milk supply:

Fenugreek:

Fenugreek is one of the most effective meals for increasing milk production. It is the finest galactagogue (foods that increase breast milk).  It helps in activating the mammary glands to boost the production of breast milk. 

Moringa:

Moringa is also a powerful galactagogue. It was reported to have a positive impact on breast milk production. It’s packed with nutrients essential for nursing moms and newborn babies. Though it is ideal to ingest fresh moringa leaves, soaking moringa powder in water and consuming it can also ensure the absorption of nutrients much more efficiently.

Also, check Weight gain diet plan for kids

Shatavari:

This ayurvedic herb has been used to help women with breastfeeding concerns. It possesses qualities that aid in the production of prolactin and corticoids, which aid in the increase of breast milk, and so enhance lactation and breast milk quality. 

Ginger:

Ginger is utilised for its health advantages in addition to giving flavour to a variety of dishes and beverages. It is a well-known natural galactagogue among nursing mothers. There is, however, evidence to support ginger’s effectiveness in enhancing breast milk volume.

Also, check Foods to increase breast size

Nuts:

Nuts like peanuts, almonds, cashew, and hazelnut provide energy for a breastfeeding mother to stay active throughout the day. It is the best snack to include in a breastfeeding mother’s diet. These nuts help to boost milk production. Also, consuming nuts new study suggested that the consumption of nuts while breastfeeding can help to protect babies from developing allergies. Nuts are considered one of the best foods for increasing breast milk.

Also,check Benefits of nuts

Seeds:

Seeds like melon, sesame, and pumpkin help in milk production. Sesame is a rich source of calcium which is the most important nutrient for breastfeeding mothers. Pumpkin seeds are a natural source of DHA and alpha-linolenic acid which helps in boosting milk volume.

Jaggery:

Iron and essential minerals like potassium, magnesium, and phosphorus are abundant in jaggery. It helps in the build-up of milk in the breast. Eating it with a piece of garlic can help boost breast milk production.

Turmeric:

For hundreds of years, this golden spice has been utilised in ayurvedic medicine as the best galactagogue ( foods that increase breast milk supply).  Hence, turmeric may help nursing mothers by increasing milk production, relieving pain, and lowering depression.

Vitamin E:

Vitamin e is only transferred to the foetus through the placenta during pregnancy, therefore breast milk is the only source of this nutrient for exclusively breastfed newborns. This is an important strategy to provide the infant with antioxidant protection while also stimulating immune system development.

Sunflower lecithin:

It is a natural fat emulsifier that can aid to lessen the “thickness and stickiness” of milk. It may also help release existing fatty blockages, boosting milk flow and quantity of milk supply.

Cocoa solids:

It’s chocolate, but it’s healthy!!! It can assist nursing mothers in increasing their milk production. It not only delivers excellent nutrition to enhance a nursing mother’s milk production, but it also gives a slew of additional health advantages to a new mother.

Cinnamon:

Cinnamon promotes the flow of mother’s milk. For milk stimulation, combine honey, milk, and cinnamon powder. Having honey and cinnamon is therefore not only healthful but is also a fantastic choice for increasing milk production.

Tips: How to increase the breast milk supply?

  • Proper latching and the correct position of the baby are very much crucial in breastfeeding.
  • Nurse the baby often, at least 1.5 -2 hours intervals so it gets to feed 8- 16 times in 24 hours.
  • Nurse on both the sides of your breast and do that till the baby want to drink and don’t limit or stop the feeding process in the middle.
  • Use your hands to stimulate milk supply by gently massaging so that the baby gets adequate milk.
  • Have a good night’s sleep and practice relaxation techniques like yoga and meditation to reduce stress and keep your mind calm.
  • It is very important for mothers to have healthy and nutritious foods that can increase breast milk supply.
  • Keep yourself hydrated and avoid overconsumption of water as it can affect the breast milk supply.
  • A breast pump can be used to stimulate and increase milk production
  • Allowing more skin-to-skin time after nursing is shown to increase breast milk supply.
  • Express the milk out completely by either compressing the breast using hands or a breast pump to drain the breast. This helps increase the milk supply.
  • Avoid using bottles and pacifiers as they get used to the habit of sucking and can’t latch properly while breastfeeding.
  • Babies should be breastfed exclusively until they reach 6 months. Avoid using other types of solid foods till this time. 

Parent reviews:

Some parents have been kind enough to share their journey with us. Let’s hear them to closely understand the benefits of Ayurvedic spreads by Iyurved.


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