Early motherhood, with all of its joys, also brings so many questions, doubts, and queries. The worry that you may not be doing all the right things to safeguard your baby’s health is very common, but do not let these doubts get to you! Thankfully, with the advent of research, studies, and perhaps most importantly the internet, new parents have access to a humongous amount of information about every aspect of early parenthood.
One of the most common concerns of new mothers is if they are producing enough milk for their baby’s necessities. A lot of mothers wish to boost their breast milk supply. It’s quite a natural instinct for a mother to want the best for their little one!
When it comes to nursing, the major aspect that should be taken care of is the diet of the mother. It’s important to include the foods that positively impact the quantity and quality of breast milk. A well balanced and highly nutritious postpartum diet is essential for the post-delivery recovery of the mother as well.
Through this article, you will get to know not only the ten foods that can help you increase your breast milk, but also how to actually add them to your daily diet.
How to Increase Breast Milk Supply?
Given below is a list of top 10 best foods that must be incorporated into the mother’s diet to enrich the supply of breast milk:
One of the most recommended ways to increase breast milk, it is a rich source of fiber which helps in digestion too. Oatmeal gives you a lot of energy and can control post-delivery diabetes. Did you know that just like during the pregnancy developing anemia after delivery is a common phenomenon?
Because anemia has shown to hinder milk production, oatmeal is suggested to be added to your diet, as it is full of all the iron you need. A bowl of oatmeal a day can go a long way in helping you combat any signs of anemia, without having to turn to artificial supplements. You can add oatmeal to your diet in the form of cookies, pancakes, etc.
2. Fenugreek Seeds
A very versatile herb, fenugreek has been documented to be used for increasing milk flow in various cultures. It is considered to be the best food that boosts the milk supply in the mothers and thus, it must be a part of your daily routine. You can add it to your tea, or use it as a spice for your dishes.
Apart from its properties that help in lactation, garlic also boosts the immune system, has the ability to stave off heart issues and not to mention, it helps babies suffering from colic. You can easily add garlic to your bread, tea, curries, and other dishes. Keep in mind that because garlic has such a strong smell, it can affect your milk’s as well.
4. Black Sesame Seeds
These seeds are known to contain estrogen-like substances, and also huge stores of calcium. Sesame seeds help you in making sure your baby grows well, and at the same time, they speed up your recovery from delivery. Add these seeds to your laddoos and have one a day as part of your snack!
5. Water and Juices
Do not overlook this simple strategy, because staying hydrated is very important if you want to be able to nurse in a way that is healthy for your body. Drink water periodically throughout the day. You can have juices made from seasonal fruits like mango, banana, litchi, etc.
There is a misconception that beverages with light traces of alcohol help in the production of breast milk. In reality, it is only a component of it that helps – barley. As it has lactogenic properties, it helps in boosting your milk supply. Barley helps your hydration levels too. You can have these whole grains in the form of rotis, bread or even soups.
7. Brown Rice
Out of all the types of rice out there, brown rice has long been believed to aid new moms in increasing their amount of breast milk. You can find it easily at a grocery store near you. Soak an appropriate amount of the rice overnight, and use it in any recipe you want to.
Issues with lactation can be alleviated with these lovely golden fruits. The process of lactation is carried out with the help of hormones which are balanced by the phytoestrogens in apricots. Apart from that, apricots are a good source of Vitamin A and C, fibers, and potassium. You can consume apricots in their dried form or you can also look for apricot based desserts and pies. These fruits make for an excellent breakfast component too.
If you are open to eating fish, you should definitely consider adding salmon to your next grocery shopping list as it promotes lactation. Salmon contains omega-3 fatty acids as well as EFAs – which make your milk more nutritious and vitamin-rich. But care should be taken to buy salmon keeping in mind the mercury levels, and consume it in limited proportions. You can add it to your favorite salads, sandwiches, or look up other easy recipes.
10. Green Papaya
Papaya is packed with vitamins and nutrients that are very beneficial in helping your digestive track and easing the baby’s stomach. This fruit is also helpful in the recovery process after the delivery. If there are any cafes or restaurants around you that serve Thai based dishes, you can try those as they tend to use green papayas a lot.
There always seem to be so many people armed with well-meaning but outdated tips about which foods help in increasing breast milk and which do not, that wading through it all to get to the reliable and genuine science is quite a task in itself. Do not forget to talk to your doctor when modifying your diet during and after pregnancy. Their expertise and knowledge can help you make the best out of these foods.