Breast milk works as the source of antibodies for your baby, protecting them against allergies and asthma. Thankfully, there are natural ways to increase breast milk. Breastfeeding brings benefits for you and your baby. Furthermore, it keeps you away from the risk of breast cancer or ovarian cancer. You also tend to shed the extra weight rapidly when breastfeeding.
Although science-backed evidence suggests breastfeeding to be a stress buster, not being able to produce enough milk could be stressful for new moms. Yes, breastfeeding doesn’t come easy to all nursing mothers because there could be a rare chance of a low milk supply. Let’s check them out below!
Natural Ways To Increase Breast Milk
You can make some lifestyle changes to boost your milk supply along with the tips of your lactation consultant. Traditionally, certain drinks and food helped increase milk supply (we call them galactagogues). We have brought you a list of such foods (and herbs) that naturally improve breast milk production.
Fresh leafy vegetables
Leafy greens such as spinach (palak), mustard greens (sarson ka saag), and lamb’s quarter (bathua) are known to enhance lactation. How? They are rich in minerals like iron, folate, and calcium; vitamins like beta-carotene and riboflavin. You should have one or two portions of these veggies daily.
Gourd vegetables as natural ways to increase breast milk
Some gourds, such as apple gourd (tinda), bottle gourd (lauki), and sponge gourd (tori) are also essential for increasing breast milk.
Masoor dals or red lentils are among the most beneficial pulses that naturally increase breast milk.
Fenugreek seeds contain healthy vitamins like omega-3 fats that support lactating mums. You can prepare fenugreek tea or add it to your veggies or meat. In addition, you may also want to try them added to rotis or parathas.
Also called saunf, fennel seeds are a perfect home remedy to increase breast milk. You can have fennel water or fennel tea in the morning.
Garlic as natural ways to increase breast milk
Nursing mothers should consume garlic in moderation to maintain a healthy milk supply. However, eating a lot of garlic may impact the smell and taste of your breast milk.
Some More Natural Foods To Increase Breast Milk
Also called til, these are a perfect non-dairy source of calcium. Breastfeeding mothers require enough calcium to ensure a good milk supply. Consume til laddoos or use them in your curries in moderation.
Add cumin seeds to snacks, chutneys, or raitas. You can also drink cumin water every morning to boost your milk supply.
Older generations used tulsi as one of the natural ways to increase breast milk. You can try having basil tea for a calming effect and a high milk supply. However, consume it in moderation.
Nuts and dry fruits
Almonds and cashews can increase your milk supply with their high content of vitamins, minerals and calories. Furthermore, blend them in your milk or add these nuts to your ladoos, halwa or panjiri.
As a rich source of calcium, iron, fibre and B-complex vitamins, oats are popular among nursing mothers. Going by the traditional beliefs, it helps in managing anxiety and depression. Therefore, your healthy mind and body will help in higher breast milk production.
Note: These foods and drinks don’t come with strong scientific evidence. There is some brief evidence for some, but it widely relies on traditional theories serving generations of lactating mothers. So, we suggest you talk to your gynecologist before adding these to your diet.
Other Natural Ways To Increase Breast Milk
Adopting a holistic approach after birth will help you prepare more breast milk. In addition to a balanced diet and plenty of fluids, try the following methods for better results:
- Firmly squeeze the breast while the baby is feeding
- Breastfeed more for improved milk supply
- Latch your baby properly
- Maintain a skin-to-skin contact to enhance the release of oxytocin and lactation hormones
- Don’t wear tight bras and tops
- Give up smoking
We know you only want the best for your child, and hence will try all the natural ways to increase breast milk. However, they might not always work, or you may not be satisfied with the level of milk supply.
Medical issues like breast cancer treatments in the past or underdeveloped breasts may prevent the optimum breast milk production. In these cases, consult a lactation/breastfeeding expert for supplements.
So, don’t worry. You are doing great as a new mom!