How can I increase my breast milk supply without the use of medications and herbal remedies?

Ebony - posted on 05/10/2010 ( 13 moms have responded )

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My milk supply is very low, how can I increase it naturally?

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Grace - posted on 05/11/2010

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Hi there I am a breast feeding support worker. Firstly please understand that your personal calorie intake has little to do with the volume of milk you produce. You can eat moderately and produce lots of milk. It is the quality of the calories that you consume that will effect your milk and so how contented your baby is. You need three elements each day in order to effectively produce good quality milk. Drink lots of water. Eat a wide range of good, healthy food and rest whenever you can. Not easy with a new baby I know.

When you feed your baby aim to completely empty first one breast and top up with the second breast if necessary. Alternate with each feed. After the first morning feed express both breasts for 5-10 minutes maximum. Do not express after the next feed. After the third feed express again for the same length of time. Don't worry if you don't get much milk, it's the action of pumping that stimulates milk production. Doing 2 or 3 extra pumping sessions during the day will effectively increase your supply within a 24 hour period, however you will need to keep up the pumping for 3-4 days to securely establish increased milk production.

To help get baby to settle at night and sleep for a longer period, at the last feed of the day give the early morning expressed milk as the calorific value in this milk is much higher than you will produce at that time simply because you will be tired. Good luck. XX

Jessica - posted on 05/11/2010

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Feed your baby all the time (or on demand) and you could try pumping in between. Milk supply works by supply and demand so the more that is taken out, the more your body is triggered to make. Also drink LOTS of water- I never realized how much water it takes your body to make a lot of milk until I actually drank a lot of it one day and noticed a supply increase. Make sure you're eating enough too and I've heard the same about oatmeal, and dark beer.

Rebecca - posted on 05/10/2010

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Make sure you eat enough calories to keep your supply up. Now is not the time to lose the weight for sure. Drink lots of water eat meals throughout the day and nurse for sure. Pump in between nursing. This will increase your supply, the more the demand the better the supply.
Good luck and congrats!!

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13 Comments

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Mary - posted on 05/16/2010

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Lots of fluids, and remember it is "supply and demand" the more you nurse, the more milk you will produce. Just please to not get fustrated and give up!!!

Caroline - posted on 05/16/2010

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I hav'nt read all replies so sorry if I'm repeating but night time feeding stimulates your pro-lactin hormone which in turn will stimulate greater milk production....if your baby's newborn allow him to feed through the night for the first while......you need to drink plenty of water and also fennel tea is great for helping to increase the milk....good luck

Sarah - posted on 05/16/2010

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feed baby and afterward pump , after awhile your breasts will produce more milk.

Sherry - posted on 05/12/2010

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Here's a suggestion my best friend gave..



breastfeed FOR AT LEAST 45 minutes wait an hour and Breast feed again.. for 45 minutes... might take a little while but it does actually increase ... It's also very important to remember that you have to be completely relaxed... that was my problem I don't relax well so I had a problem breastfeeding... I did however express whenever I could so he still got the breastmilk even in smaller doses then i would have liked...



If you end up lactating too much .. just bag it and freeze it... It can be frozen for up to 3 or 6 months I believe... so could come in handy if you dry up before that.

Samantha - posted on 05/11/2010

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use a breast pump the more your breasts think your baby is feeding the more milk u will produce

Catherine - posted on 05/11/2010

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I had trouble with low supply when my son was born, and I just fed him whenever he seemed the least bit interested, and then I pumped for 5 minutes after each feeding and between feedings. It worked so well for me that I ended up with an over-abundant supply in a few weeks, so hopefully it will work for you too. Good luck!

Amy - posted on 05/10/2010

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A close friend had the same problem and her doctor suggested a small glass of wine or beer. It sounds strange, but it works and a small amount is fine. The most important things are to keep at it and relax.

Iridescent - posted on 05/10/2010

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Drink a lot of water. Eat whole grain foods (bread, oatmeal). Breastfeed! A friend of mine had asked me this same question, and I found out she was only pumping and feeding, not actually breastfeeding her baby directly at all; it does make a huge difference. Think positively while holding/feeding your baby, and regarding your own ability to feed her. The thought/feeling process helps release hormones to encourage more milk.

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