Along with all the excitement, love and wonderful emotions that come with becoming a mum, it can also be exhausting and overwhelming. We want to provide our babies with all the nourishment they need, so it can be a very distressing time for new mums struggling with low milk supply.
There are many contributing factors to low milk supply, such as a poor latch or not breastfeeding your baby frequently enough. The more you put your baby to the breast with a good latch, the more you will be stimulating your body to produce a healthy supply of breast milk.
Other factors include hormonal imbalances and stress that can occur in those early days and weeks of breastfeeding. Raised cortisol levels can lead to lack of sleep and feelings of anxiety and stress, all of which can contribute to decreased levels of milk supply.
Where possible, breastfeeding mums should try to rest when they can and stay well hydrated. Breast milk is made up of almost 90% water, so it is important to keep your own fluid levels topped up throughout the day (and night).
Good diet and nutrition are also very important. You should try to eat regularly and include a range of nutrient-rich foods to give you the energy and nutrition to produce milk. Opt for protein-rich foods, such as lean meat, dairy, beans, eggs, lentils, nuts, avocados and seafood low in mercury, along with a variety of whole grains and fruits and vegetables.
For a little extra help for mothers struggling to produce enough milk, despite a good stimulation/demand, Mother Nature has provided us with an amazing array of herbs and plants to encourage and maintain milk supply. One natural, tried and trusted solution is lactation tea.
What is Mother’s breastfeeding tea?
Mother’s breastfeeding tea is designed to improve and support adequate milk supply for your baby. Made from plants and used by women all over the world for hundreds of years, lactation tea uses optimal hydration, which is essential for milk production, along with plants and herbs known as galactagogues. Each plant provides its special benefits to increase milk supply.
Fenugreek has been used since ancient times for its galactogenic properties that facilitate milk let-down and rectify milk insufficiency. Its healing properties also aide a good recovery after childbirth. It contains diosgenin, a steroidal saponin, which is involved in the growth of breast cells and is known to boost milk supply within just 24 to 72 hours after the first cup. Along with aniseed, it supports the digestive function of both mother and baby.
Goat’s rue is a plant native to the Middle East and can be a very effective herb for increasing breast milk supply. It has long been used to help lactating mothers with low milk supply, as well as supporting liver and adrenal gland function, and aiding digestion.
Caraway and chamomile have a soothing effect and help to reduce symptoms of colic. Chamomile provides a moment of deep relaxation, whilst soothing digestion. Caraway has galactogenic properties and is also helpful for aiding digestion.
Aromatic fennel is known for its ability to support milk flow and lactation and increase the quality of breast milk. It also adds a wonderful flavour, which is thought to please babies. It contains oestrogen-like properties known as phytoestrogens, which help to enhance breast milk production.
Nettle leaves add a fresh and pleasant flavour to the tea. Nettle is thought to be one of the richest sources of nutritive minerals among plant foods and offers a range of health benefits, including helping to lower blood pressure and reduce inflammation. It is thought to stimulate milk production in breastfeeding mothers.