As a nursing mama it can be frusterating when your body decides to protest providing the goods for your little growing peanut! Don’t fret though, you are not alone and there are tricks to get you motivated – we are spilling all the beans today!
Every child is different and every nursing experience is completely unique in its own way. I personally never wanted to admit with baby number three that there may be an issue with my supply, but soon came to the realization a preemie baby is a completely different ball game and I needed to research sources to get more milk and fast. I wanted to share what has worked and what has completely not in the production of more milk. The scale will be 1 – 10 (one meaning not a thing changed and ten meaning a complete game changer.)
Pumping – 8
Pump every 1-2 hours for atleast 15 minutes per breast. Once the last drop of milk comes out in the bottle, pump for an additional 2-3 minutes after to let your body know it needs to keep it coming! Pumping has definitely been a saving grace for me on this journey, especially having a preemie who is required to supplement 12 oz a day with Neo Sure. (Ya all this is ALOT of supplementing and the pump and I have become besties.) I am almost positive it is the only reason I have not dried up through our NICU stay and post partem adventures.
Fenugreek – 6
First off…What is Fenugreek? It is a ground seed which is super high in fibers! You can take it in a capsule form, tea, make cookies, or order a pre made cocktail which already contains fenugreek. I chose to just take the capsules as all of my research said that they are the strongest and fastest way to increase milk supply! I take two in the morning, afternoon and night (a total of 6 capsules per day.) Make sure you are drinking a ton of water as well mixed with this much fiber!
Mothers Milk Tea – 4
I have only been doing one cup a night so maybe if I upped it I would see more of an increase but I can only consume so many liquids per day! If I drink it and then pump an hour later there is really not much of a difference.
Beer – 7
Mama’s told me drink a beer or two at night and you will see a difference. I laughed and thought they were crazy and how oxymoron is this? I then got desperate and tried it. My first night I leaked over night on my sheets which is huge for not having a drop on my typical sleep. The next night I was able to pump a full 4 oz. in less then 2 hours. THIS WAS HUGE! Being a why woman, I always need facts as to why something works. Here’s the skinny ladies. Polysaccharide is in the Barley used to make beer, polysacccharide is also a stimulate to prolactin which helps mamas make more milk. There is a ton of mixed research on this.
Drinking at least 64 oz. of Water a day – 10
Okay,this sounds like a lot, however it’s so little if you think about the amount of liquid leaving your body. It’s absolutely crucial to be hydrated for healthy breast feeding habits. When your not thirsty drink water, you should be running to the ladies room every 30 minutes to one hour if your hydrating correctly.
We all know oatmeal is a wonderful source of iron. Heres the deal….Some women do not realize they are lacking iron and if this is the case with your particular situation it will effect your milk supply. The best recipe I have found so far with effectiveness is this…
- 1/3 cup old fashion oats.
- 1 tbs flaxseed.
- 1 tbs brewers yeast.
- 1 tbs brown sugar.
- 1 cup milk. (I go with almond)
- 1/4 cup craisins.
Rest – 4
Rest is so important for our bodies. With a new born (and especially if you have other littles) you may be rolling your eyes at me right now with a big fat “yeah right”. Just like anything in your body though, for it to work and run properly you need proper nutrition and sleep, hands down. If babies napping, no matter how long your to do list is… take a 20 minute snooze…
Seven has always been my favorite number…(I know, kind of basic over here. ) I put together a list of seven foods to search out and include in your every day meals. These honestly make a huge difference in nutrition for your baby and for your milk supply.
- Barley – In beer. You can also use in stews and soups.
- Barley Malt – Use with chocolate or cocoa.
- Fennel & Fenugreek – Amazing with salads or chicken.
- Any whole grain – Think breads, pancakes, etc. Any where you can read a label and swap the white for the grain do it!
- Brewers Yeast – If you bake throw it in some delicious cookies.
- Vegis – Dill, Apricots, Papayas, Asparagus, Garlic, Red beets, Sesame Seeds, Caraway Seeds, Anise Seeds, Coiander Seeds.
- Oats – Use with fruit, muffins, granola.
Most importantly, remember this is a journey… Every child is unique and different so why should your body behave any differently? Remember to give your self grace and know that you are a mama bear doing your best to give your baby everything you can. Hopefully you can take one or two things from this article and it helps!
Happy Milking Mama’s!