Many mothers worry about their milk supply at some point. However, it is extremely rare for a mother to be unable to satisfy her baby’s nutritional needs with breastmilk alone
(in the absence of certain surgical or medical conditions).
The best way to ensure a healthy milk supply for your baby is to feed on demand, 24/7, for the first weeks of life. A newborn baby eats very frequently – often every hour. This does not mean you do not have enough milk, it just means that your baby’s stomach is very small and can only hold enough milk to satisfy him or her for short periods. Feeding on
demand is critical because your breasts won’t make more milk until they are emptied – the more often they are drained, the more they fill up.
Is my baby getting enough?
The best way to judge at home if a baby is getting enough milk is counting wet/poopy diapers.
5 - 6+ sopping wet diapers per day (after 1st week).
Expect one wet diaper on day one, increasing to 5-6 by one week. To feel what a sufficiently wet diaper is like, pour 3 tablespoons (45 mL) of water into a clean diaper (if baby wets more often, then the amount of urine per diaper may be less). Urine should be pale and mild smelling.
3 – 4+ dirty diapers per day (after day 4).
Stools should be yellow (no meconium) by day 5 and the size of a US quarter (2.5 cm) or larger. The normal stool of a breastfed baby is usually yellow and is loose (soft to watery, may be seedy or curdy).
Regular weights at your pediatrician’s can also be a good indicator. Most babies gain an average of 3.5-7 oz a week during their first six months. If your baby is not gaining enough over a period of time, you might benefit from some of the following tips:
Foods and supplements thought to support/increase lactation
Fennel and fennel seed
Flaxseed meal and flaxseed oil
Nutritional and/or brewer’s yeast
Beer/hops (limit to one a day if drinking alcoholic beer)
http://www.kellymom.com/herbal/milksupp ... greek.html
These are super yummy and help boost your milk supply! The recommended ‘dose’ is 4 cookies per day (good luck limiting yourself to that many). This recipe makes a lot – about 60-70 cookies - so it can be halved if necessary.
1 C butter
1 C sugar
1 C brown sugar
4 T water
2 T flaxseed meal (no subs)
2 Lg eggs
1 t vanilla
2 C flour
1 t baking soda
1 t salt
3 C Thick cut oats
1 C Chocolate chips
2 T Brewers Yeast (no substitutions)
Preheat oven at 375.
Mix 2 T of flaxseed meal and water, set aside 3-5 minutes.
Cream butter and sugar.
Stir flaxseed mix into butter mix and add vanilla.
Beat until well blended.
Sift: dry ingredients, except oats and choc chips.
Add butter mix to dry ingredients.
Stir in the oats and then the choc chips.
Drop on baking sheet.
Bake 8-12 minutes.
Other ways to increase milk supply:
Power Pumping (text courtesy of mobimotherhood.org)
Power pumping is a technique that can be helpful in building a milk supply. For more information on basic pumping techniques, see the pumping section below. Here is a brief explanation of power pumping.
Power pumping involves using regular pumping techniques and setup, but in a unique way. The idea is to mimic a baby who is nursing frequently to increase a mother’s supply, as is common in the nursing relationship during a growth spurt. To power pump, hook-up as you would for a normal pumping session, pump for 10-20 minutes, rest 10 minutes, then pump another 10 minutes, then rest for 10 minutes, then pump again for 10 minutes. The mother does this for about an hour, once per day, to increase supply. At other pumping times during the day, routine pumping is used. It can take about a week to see an increase, so don’t get discouraged.
Some mothers prefer to concentrate their efforts and have a power pumping weekend, called “Power Pumping Boot Camp” by some lactation consultants. They power pump at each pumping for a couple of days before returning to routine pumping.
Prescription Drugs: (text courtesy of mobimotherhood.org)
Medications are sometimes used to help a mother increase her milk production. The most commonly used are Domperidone and Reglan®.
Domperidone, although not FDA approved, is available through compounding pharmacies in the United States with a prescription. Dr. Jack Newman, a breastfeeding expert from Canada, was among the first physicians to recognize the potential of using domperidone for milk production. He has generously provided medical information handouts about domperidone as a milk enhancing drug that mothers can take to their doctors. Dr. Jack Newman's information can be found at:
Dr. Newman's thoughts on the FDA standing on domperidone can be found here.
Domperidone is readily available as an over-the-counter medication in many countries. It may legally be purchased without a prescription and shipped into the United States from an overseas pharmacy by an individual for their own use.
Reglan® is available in the United States by prescription. Because it does often have side effects, such as depression, it is not as popular with mothers as domperidone.
Lactogenic foods and herbs:
Living with chronic low milk supply:
http://www.mobimotherhood.org/MM/articl ... x#increase
added by JTSUMMERS
225g/8oz/1.15cups packed soft brown sugar
100g/4oz/0.5cup golden syrup
100g/4oz/0.5cup peanut butter
2tbsp flaxseed meal
2tbsp brewer's yeast
3tbsp sesame seeds
Mix the flaxseed meal and water and set aside for a few minutes. Melt the butter, sugar, syrup and pb in a pan on a gentle heat. Take off the heat, stir in the yeast and flaxseed meal, then the oats and seeds. Spread the mix into a buttered tin, and bake in the oven at Gas mark 4/180c/355f for 20-30 minutes. Allow to cool for 15 minutes, mark into squares, cut when cold.
*More fat and/or shorter cooking time will result in a chewier rather than crunchier flapjack
*Use smooth or crunchy or leave out the peanut butter as preferred.
*Use honey or maple syrup in place of golden syrup.
*After marking into squares sprinkle on chocolate chips
*Add extras such as seeds, nuts, dried fruit, chopped crystalised ginger - whatever your taste!
added by LEMONJELLY
There is now a website devoted to low milk supply http://www.lowmilksupply.org/
and a book called Making More Milk by Diana West, IBCLC. The site looks like it is still a work in progress.
added by BLUE-EDEN
Another thing to consider with your supply is to look at factors that might be decreasing your supply and eliminate them from your lifestyle/diet, or treat the underlying issue.
Oral contraceptives that contain estrogen will likely decrease milk supply, and even the "mini pill" has been known to affect milk production (I had to go off it for that reason).
Thyroid issues. It's recommended that postpartum women get their thyroid levels checked, to correct imbalances.
Autoimmune disorders affect the body's ability to produce moisture, and this might correlate to issues with supply.
PCOS. There are medications a nursing mother can take to help increase supply, such as metoclopramide, domperidone and metformin.
Not getting enough rest and calories, or fluid intake.
Herbs such as sage, parsely and peppermint (so check your herbal teas).
Kellymom lists these herbs that can decrease supply:
Peppermint (Mentha piperita), Spearmint, Parsley (Petroselinum crispum), Chickweed, Black Walnut, stinging nettles (not nettle - that increases milk supply), Yarrow, Herb Robert (Geranium robertianum), Lemon Balm, Oregano, Periwinkle Herb (Vinca minor), Sorrel (Rumex acetosa).
Here is another great book for herbal help for women who are seeking to get pregnant, pregnant women, and nursing mothers:
http://www.ashtreepublishing.com/booksh ... earing.php
Juliette di Bairacli Levy is also renowned for her herbal knowledge:
Other natural methods for increasing supply:
Massage, especially breast massage and upper back/shoulders
Deep breathing and relaxation