One of the most widespread issues that I run into when talking with other moms is the question of how to boost or maintain supply. After going through the process of trying to increase milk supply myself, I developed some pretty fail-proof practices, and sharing them with fellow moms is so important. There just are not enough resources out there for nursing/pumping moms. Below are my top tips:
I seriously recommend renting a pump versus buying one. I started off with a Medela Pump-in-Style, but what I really NEEDED was a hospital-grade pump, which generally cost about $2k-hence the reason that renting is a great option. I got the Medela Symphony, and fell in love. These bad boys are the industrial strength milkers of the breastfeeding world (how odd does that sound?) and lots of places will rent them to you for a minimal monthly fee. This pump has been a life saver for me, ESPECIALLY since I returned to work 3 months after little C was born. From the start, I pumped for about 20 minutes every time RIGHT AFTER she finished nursing to boost my supply. I swear by this pump. If you do nothing else, rent the Medela Symphony.
I take Motherlove More Milk Plus multiple times a day. Made of a special blend of herbs including fenugreek, these were yet another life saver in my quest for more milk. Essentially, you want your sweat to smell like maple syrup-that tells you that you have an optimal amount of fenugreek in your system. I literally woke up one morning smelling like waffles. Working out at the gym was a little weird, I was like a mobile IHOP. But, that syrup smell equaled a lot more milk, so I was willing to give people diabetic comas just by being near me if it meant more milk for little C.
Holler to my hometown of Sebastopol, CA and their Traditional Medicinals teas. The Organic Mother’s Milk lactation tea is a god-send, I order this stuff by the crateful and drink it all.day.long. It’s packed with tons of milk-boosting organic herbs like fennel, fenugreek, and anise, and has a mild licorice flavor. This, combined with my Motherlove capsules and pump were the triple threat I needed.
Oats. Eat them. While there are no scientific studies, most moms (me included) swear by them. Oatmeal is a fantastic source of iron (anemia can lead to a decrease in milk supply), is a great comfort food to help with let-down, and even if it doesn’t boost your milk, you are getting a great meal 😉