Milky Way: How To Increase Lactation Naturally
Becoming a mother is one of the most life-changing experiences one can ever go through. It is at times beautiful, and at others, frustrating.
By far, the thing that new moms struggle with most is breastfeeding. Here are a few pointers to help you along the way:
- Keep feeding, and you will continue to produce more milk. More often than not, the supply matches the demand.
- Nurse from both breasts during each feed.
- Take adequate rest.
Stress will dry up your milk like nothing else. So take a deep breath, relax, and enjoy being with your baby.
- Gently massage the breast while feeding to open up the ducts.
- Make sure your bra is not too tight and doesn’t compress your breasts.
Traditionally, some foods are said to increase the production of milk. These are called galactagogues. While adequate research is needed on the same, you can try the following:
- Fenugreek — Fenugreek has been believed to increase breastmilk supply since very long. It can be had as tea, as a vegetable made from fenugreek leaves, or can be added to other vegetable or meat dishes.
- Oats — A great source of iron, calcium, fibre, and B vitamins, oats are traditionally believed to increase lactation. You may eat it as porridge, add to cookies or muffins, or even have it raw.
- Fennel seeds — Not only are fennel seeds a traditional remedy for increasing milk supply, they also aid in digestion, both for the mother and the baby. They can be had on their own, as fennel water, or as fennel tea.
- Nuts — Cashews, macadamia nuts, and almonds are most commonly believed to help with increasing breastmilk supply. Panjiri, laddoos, and halwa are traditionally made for new mothers using these nuts.
- Green vegetables — Spinach, mustard greens, fenugreek leaves, and lamb’s quarter are all believed to increase the supply of breastmilk. They are also good sources of folic acid, iron, calcium, and vitamins.
Along with the above mentioned foods, ginger, garlic, and cumin are also considered to be milk boosters. Water is another important element for lactating mothers, as dehydration is not a friend of breastfeeding. Some research also shows that garlic, onions, and mint make breastmilk taste different. If your baby likes the taste and suckles more, it may encourage milk production.
It is also widely trusted that milk production is more when you are around your baby. That is why it is suggested that you touch your baby often, especially while feeding, and also undress the baby and hold him to your naked chest for better milk production and letdown.
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