Increased supply of breast milk is important for the health of the baby and for the emotional satisfaction of the mother. Most of the time the amount of milk produced by the mother is enough for the baby, but sometimes it may not be so. The best method to increase milk production is to start breastfeeding immediately after birth and keep feeding frequently after that. If this is not possible due to a medical reason, then there are natural foods that can be consumed to increase breast milk supply.
Foods That Increase Breast Milk Supply
Water And Other Juices- The most important consideration for breastfeeding is staying hydrated. Not only is it important for increasing the amount of breast milk but is also important for the overall health of the mother. Drink a lot of water; to increase the amount of milk, drink a glass of water before feeding.
Fenugreek Seeds And Leaves- Also known as methi, this increases the supply of breast milk. Besides, it also helps the mother overcome constipation that usually occurs after delivery. You can use it in curries or in any of the myriad traditional ways in which methi is used in the Indian kitchen.
Fennel Seeds- Also known as saunf, it increases the amount of breast milk, helps the baby with digestion of milk and reduces bloating or pain in the baby’s stomach. It also helps the mother get rid of constipation and acts as a breath freshener. It can be chewed two to four times a day.
Carrots- Have them raw or in the form of juice along with breakfast or lunch to increase the quantity of breast milk.
Cumin Seeds- Also known as jeera, along with increasing the supply of breast milk in a nursing mother, cumin seeds also aid in digestion and increase immunity. They can be added to snacks and curries for flavouring, whole or in powder form.
Garlic- It is considered to be one of the most well-known foods to increase the breast milk supply. It contains nutrients that increase milk production as well as prevent a number of diseases. It can be consumed in a raw or fried state. Don’t overdo garlic as it changes the flavour of breast milk and the baby may refuse to feed.
Pumpkin Seeds- ‘Kaddu ke beej’ provide the body with the necessary vitamins, which increase breast milk supply. They also help mothers with digestion problems. Use them in salads or roast and eat them as a snack.
Poppy Seeds- Khus khus helps a breastfeeding mother relax and helps in increasing the supply of breast milk. But be careful to only use it in small quantities. Take it with milk or dry roast it and add it to salads.
Spinach and other green leafy vegetables- They contain vitamins and minerals that help a woman suffering from iron and vitamin deficiencies especially after delivery. You can eat them in salads or curries or juice it raw.
Black Sesame Seeds- Til is a very important source of nutrients and minerals. It is considered an excellent food for increasing breast milk production. TIL can be added to most cooked foods and also eaten as the popular dessert, til ke laddoo. You can also use sesame seed oil for garnishing or sprinkle it liberally on salads and food.
Anise Seeds- Choti saunf is an important ingredient for cooking and a herbal medicine. It increases the blood supply to your breasts and helps in increasing the milk production. You can simply chew it.
Oatmeal- Oatmeal is rich in fiber and antioxidants, which are good for digestion as well as the overall health of the mother. It has been known to increase breast milk and has been used for a long time. You can make porridge, idli, poha or chilla with it. Oatmeal daliya or porridge is a good source of energy.
Barley- Jau is an important source of hydration and energy and is useful for increasing breast milk production. It also helps with digestion, weight loss and in preventing other diseases. You can boil it in water and drink it. Or you can make soup or a chapati out of it.
Sweet Potato- Shakarkandi is a very important source of vitamins and minerals and is a great addition to the diet of a pregnant and breastfeeding woman. Sweet potato is also rich in magnesium. It can be eaten after boiling or roasting or you can use it to make a vegetable soup or a pudding.
Bottle gourd- Lauki is known to increase the amount of breast milk. It also keeps the body hydrated, which helps in increasing the milk supply. You can use it in curries, or along with other vegetables, or you can drink it in the form of a juice with lemon as a taste enhancer.
Bitter Gourd- Karela is rich in folic acid and nutrients and helps in boosting milk production. Along with that, it also improves the overall health of the mother by improving the function of her liver, detoxifying the body and improving digestion.
The foods mentioned above are only a small part of the list that can help in increasing breast milk. Not only are they important for breastfeeding but also for the overall health of the lactating mother.