How often and what should be eaten to produce more milk?

Shaquoia - posted on 09/16/2009 ( 12 moms have responded )

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Breastfeeding is hard as it is when worrying about latching on and if your baby will take to the breast but what about when you don't produce enough milk? How often should I eat to produce enough milk? What foods can stimulate a faster production of milk?

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Kristie - posted on 09/16/2009

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I also had the problem of not making enough milk for my baby. I tried everything that was advised above—mother's milk tea, fenugreek, prescription drug Reglan, and pumping 10 times a day. Reglan was the only thing that boosted my supply but it has wicked side effects of serious depression. If you can tolerate the depression it can work very well in as little as a week. Some people's bodies just don't produce enough especially for the first baby. It's hard to accept it but you must realize that it's not your fault or that you're not an inadequate mother because of it.



As far as your diet goes, the biggest thing for me was drinking lots of water. I had a giant bottle of water going all day long, and all night long too! Another dietary supplement that can help is nutritional yeast flakes (they're yummy too!). It's the thing in beer that makes you produce more and it's really good for you. My baby is now 7 months and I still breastfeed but have had to supplement with formula as well. I really wish I didn't have to supplement with formula but I had no choice, she wasn't getting enough food.

Corinne - posted on 09/16/2009

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Blessed thistle tea. Drink 5-6 cups a day and you will have plently of enriched milk for your baby. If you can't find it at the natural food store near you, then go to www.bulkherbstore.com They have a brew called mama's tea and that works really well also. They take 2-3 days after you purchase it online to recieve. They are my favorite place to buy herbs.

Becky - posted on 04/24/2013

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Mallory has it right... More baby at breast, more milk produced. Eat when you are hungry (which you will be as you breastfeed often) Drink to not dehydrate. Skin to skin also helps production because of the physical stimulation to increase production. You will do great and just remember the more you di it, the more you will produce.

Amanda - posted on 09/16/2009

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I had this problem when I was nursing my daughter - it took 7 weeks for her to figure out how to latch so I went to nipple shields which completely dwindled my milk supply and I was unknowingly starving my daughter! If it's a REALLY serious problem, you can ask you doctor to prescribe meds to increase milk supply (they'll do it if your baby is gaining sufficient weight), but you can also get lactation teas. They're just herbal teas with Fenugreek and stuff to make you produce more milk. Try a health food store or an herbalist and they can probably mix one up for you, or Google it :) I ordered from a lactation consultant/doola in Florida and it worked like a charm for me.

[deleted account]

Definitely check out the Kellymom link that Karen posted - that's a great resources. As for increasing your supply, putting baby on the breast more often, or pumping after feedings will help. Make sure you're drinking lots of water. Eating oatmeal helps boost your supply as well. Good luck!

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Jessica - posted on 09/17/2009

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Make sure you drink a lot of water as well. But I would make sure you nurse every 2 - 3 hours even if you don't feel full in the breast, it signals your body to produce more. Pumping after feeding is a good idea as well.

Minnie - posted on 09/16/2009

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As long as you're taking in a minimum of 1500-1800 calories a day and putting baby to your breast whenever he wants it, along with a good latch you'll make adequate milk.



Mothers in famines nourish their infants just fine on their milk.



Herbs/supplements- spotty success at best. Best way to ensure a good supply is to nurse baby whenever he wants it regardless of when he last nursed.

Shaquoia - posted on 09/16/2009

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Fellow moms thank you. All your advice has been helpful and shines light on what I can do to produce more milk for my newborn. I am more concerned as to how much i'm going to make when I start to go back to work. I will definitly try the tea since that is one my favorite drinks. Thanks again!!

Jasmine - posted on 09/16/2009

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Hi Shaquoia,

Eating kale is another natural way to produce more breastmilk. It's also an iron-rich food, which is great for post-partum. Try this recipe out. Trust me, it's really good!

-Healthy handful of shredded kale

-1 banana

-Cup of milk or soy milk

-Cup of pineapple juice or pineapple chuncks (fresh or frozen)

-Tbsp ground flaxseed (optional)

-Blend

Saves time & smoothie tastes better if you shred kale & chop bananas to keep in freezer (in seperate ziploc bags). If you don't do that, then add ice to the smoothie. You may want to play around w/ the ingredients to get consistency & taste that suits you. Add other fresh fruit or spinach or yogurt if you want. Enjoy & good luck!

Karen - posted on 09/16/2009

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I agree with Mallory. It's more about the frequency. I noticed that my milk supply went down slightly several weeks ago. It was because I was falling asleep while breast feeding him in bed. That meant that I would go 6-7 hours at night without feeding on a particular side. I started taking fenugreek supplements, increasing hydration, and pumping more. I made an effort to get up at least once in the middle of the night to pump and now the supply has gone up some. If you want to learn more, go to: http://www.kellymom.com/bf/supply/milkpr...
Also, don't forget to maintain adequate nutrition. If you still have problems, see a lactation specialist. Good luck.

Stephanie - posted on 09/16/2009

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I agree with Mallory, pumping after your nurse for 5 min. That really helped me! Also, keeping hydrated and Oats. I ate oatmeal every day and make a special drink. Boil the oats and then drain them. It makes kind of a thick drink you can add cinnamon sticks in the mix too, adds a great flavor.
I would visit the La Leche League web page too, I am sure they have some great ideas.
Best of Luck!

Mallory - posted on 09/16/2009

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You need to eat when you are hungry, but eating certain foods or certain amounts isn't how your milk supply increased. The key is frequency (with a certain amount of duration). To establish a good milk supply the lactation consultants recommended nursing every 2-3 hours during the day and 4-5 hours at night. The breasts needs to be drained. Another way to increase supply is have your child nurse and then pump for five more minutes, even if nothing more comes out. This tells your body to make more milk. You'll have to do this 2-3 days before you see results. There is Mother's Milk tea that was recommended to me. I'm not sure if it was the extra nursing/pumping or tea that increased my supply. Unfortunately there is not a magic food, but increase your frequency and that should help. If you are struggling with latch or production or anything, call your lactation consultants ASAP. Don't wait til you have problems. Lots of help can be given over the phone. You can find them at hospitals or maybe your pediatrician's office. Hope that helps. Good luck.

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