Breastfeeding is an incredible journey, yet a challenging one. One of the most common struggles mothers face is a low milk supply. Low milk supply can be caused by various factors, such as stress, inadequate feeding, hormonal issues, and poor nutrition.
Eating the right foods can help increase milk production and improve the quality of breast milk. The flavor of your breast milk could change if you start to eat a variety of foods while nursing. This is a good thing, since your baby will be exposed to a variety of flavors, which could make it easier for them to eat and like solid foods in the future.
In this article, we’ll explore the top foods to increase milk supply when breastfeeding. These foods are not only delicious but are also packed with nutrients that can help boost milk production.
Top Foods to Increase Milk Supply
The most important thing you can do to increase your milk supply is eat well. Eating the correct amounts of protein, carbs, and fats is critical. Although milk supply supplements in Singapore are an option, you should always start by improving your nutrition and what you eat on a daily basis.
As a nursing mom who should focus both on your baby and your nutrition, you also need to make sure that you’re getting enough calcium, vitamin B12, iron, and other nutrients that will help your body produce more breastmilk. The good news is that these nutrients are easy to find in most foods!
Oatmeal is a great source of complex carbohydrates that can help increase milk supply. It contains iron, which is essential for lactation. Oatmeal is also rich in fiber, which can aid digestion and prevent constipation.
It also contains zinc which helps to boost your milk supply by helping you produce more milk. Oatmeal is also high in vitamin B which can help your body produce breast milk faster than normal.
You can try oatmeal milk, overnight oats, or even bake some oatmeal cookies! Our mummy’s gelato has an oat milk base, which is perfect as a nutritious and delicious dessert.
Almonds are a great source of protein, healthy fats, and vitamins that can help increase milk production. They are rich in magnesium, which can help relax the muscles and promote milk flow. The vitamin E found on almonds can also help reduce itching caused by stretch marks after pregnancy.
Nuts and seeds
Nuts and seeds are a good source of protein, which is important for breastfeeding moms. If you’re trying to increase milk supply, it’s best to stick with raw or roasted nuts. Nuts and seeds are high in galactagogues, and are commonly known as being an amazing alternative to increase a milk supply when non-medical interventions do not help.
However, you need to keep in mind that there are synthetic galactagogues which are not the best option. Instead, you can try to eat more nuts and seeds to increase your galactagogues intake!
Fennel is a herb that has been traditionally used to increase milk supply. It contains phytoestrogens, which can mimic the hormone estrogen and stimulate milk production. Fennel is also rich in vitamins and minerals that are essential for breastfeeding mothers.
Try adding it to your salads, your chicken or any other plate for your meals or dinner. Our favorite option for eating fennel seeds is our Mummy’s delicious walnut snacks, which are coated with fennel seeds.
Spinach is a leafy green vegetable that is packed with nutrients that can help increase milk supply. It is rich in iron, which is important for lactation. Spinach is also a good source of calcium, which is essential for strong bones and teeth.
You can try adding spinach to a morning smoothie (this way if you are not a fan you won’t feel the taste!), you can cook them with more veggies or you can add them to a fresh salad.
Salmon and Eggs
Salmon is a fatty fish that is rich in BHA, B12, and omega-3 fatty acids, which can help improve the quality of breast milk. Omega-3 fatty acids are essential for the baby’s brain development and can also help reduce inflammation in the mother’s body. Not sure how to eat your salmon? Here are some recipes.
Eggs are rich in protein, choline, lutein, vitamins B12 and D, riboflavin, and folate. They are super versatile, so you can eat them any way you want, just make sure you are eating both the yolk and the white!
Legumes such as chickpeas or beans
Commonly known as garbanzo, chickpeas are a popular and versatile legume used in Middle Eastern and Mediterranean cuisine. Legumes are wholesome foods that are rich in protein, iron, and fiber. Additionally, they contain plant estrogens that could be useful as galactagogues.
Chickpeas can be added to salads or transformed into a delicious hummus. You can also make a garbanzo ceviche by adding sliced tomatoes, onion, cilantro, lemon, a bit of salt, and olive oil.
What Foods to Avoid When Breastfeeding
The recommendation is to stay away from alcohol if you are breastfeeding. However, if you are planning on drinking—maybe you have a special event to attend or you are really craving a drink—then there are some tips you should follow. First, before you drink alcohol, pump milk to feed your baby later. Second, avoid drinking more than one unit of alcohol per week. One unit is = to a small glass of wine (125ml), half a pint of beer, or a single measure of a spirit (25ml)
You should also avoid caffeine or reduce your consumption to one cup of coffee or caffeinated tea per day. Your baby may become agitated or have trouble falling asleep if there is caffeine in your breast milk.
Lastly, you should keep an eye on processed foods and seafood high in mercury.
Nutrition plays a crucial role in breastfeeding. A mother’s body needs more energy and nutrients during this period to produce milk and provide the necessary nourishment to the baby. Eating a well-balanced diet that includes a variety of foods can help ensure that the mother’s body has all the nutrients it needs to support milk production. Remember that a healthy lactation journey includes eating foods that are not only good for nurturing the baby but the mother’s body as well.