Monday, July 7, 2014

How to increase your milk supply while breastfeeding

I love helping women with breastfeeding questions, and I am currently considering become a certified lactation consultant. I have some of the courses done already so that helps. The most popular question I get is how to increase the milk supply. If you need help face to face then seek help from your local La Leche Leage or call you clinic/hospital and ask for a Lactation Consultant. Here are just a few things that helped me when I was struggling with my supply. As always talk to your dr or a IBCLC (Lactation Consultant) before starting anything.

Having a good milk supply is a huge concern for probably every mom when breastfeeding a baby.  We ask ourselves if we are making enough, especially if the baby is still fussy after a nursing session. The way I think of it is supply and demand.

A newborn’s tummy is so small it’s the size of a marble, so you really don’t need that much to fill it up. In the picture below shows how much a baby really needs at that point in their life. The first time I saw it, it really opened my eyes on how much they really need. Of course an exclusively breastfed baby eats more often as it’s digested faster than formula. (Image from

If you are like me and had to return to work and really didn’t have much of a supply, there are ways to increase it naturally. The first thing I suggest is to pump more often, but remember your baby will always get more from you nursing that a pump will get. I know this is going to sound crazy as you are probably already sleep deprived, but wake up in the middle of the night and add a pumping session. I started doing that and it helped a ton. Your body makes more milk between the house of 1am and 4am when the hormone levels of prolactin are at its highest. Also if you can nurse on one side and pump on the other, then switch and do the other side. While Pumping I would watch a video of the baby, look at pictures or even hold a cloth that has his or her scent, it will help with hormones and let downs. This tricks the body into making more milk.

You can also try doing what’s called power pumping. Pump both breasts at the same time for 15 minutes, rest for 10 and repeat for 1-2 hours. Do this as often as you can.

If none of this works or you still need more help there are supplements that can help. Some are natural and some are medications. Do what works for you and your budget as they can add up in price.  
Reglan- Follow dosing Dr gives but usually goes like:
Day 1&12- 1pill at night
Day 2&11- 1 in morning, 1 at night
Day 3-10- 1 in morning, 1 in afternoon, 1 at night
This is so your body gradually increases supply then decrease meds without decreasing the supply.

Domperidone- very expensive in the states as you need to get it from a compound pharmacy, but they work.
Over the Counter:
Make sure you get these from a good source. I have found that health food stores are better than the big box stores.
Blessed Thistle- 2 pills 3x a day- stop taking if gives you stomach/gas pains, not all women get this.
Fenugreek- start 3-4 pills 3 times a day then increase as you need. When you have gotten enough your urine will smell like maple syrup.
Marshmallow Root- 2 pills 3x a day
Goats rue- 2 pills 3x a day, comes in pills or liquid
Mothers Milk (comes in tea, pills, liquid) 2 pills 3x a day
Brewers Yeast- (both in powder or pills) for powder you can add to food or water/juice. Pills- 3 pills 3x a day. I found the powder in the organic section at my local grocery store.
Oatmeal- not instant, steel or rolled cut is best.
Fennel Oil- Get from a good place like DoTerra and apply right on the breast.
Fennel- take 2 tablets 3x a day
Lactafow- Take 10-60 drops 1-3x a day (per website)
Last but not least, this is one of my favorites. It’s a recipe for what is called lactation cookies. When I asked my husband to make these is paused because he thought they would have breastmilk in them (relax they don’t) but it sure gave me a good laugh. They are so good. That I ate 2 or 3 (ok sometimes more) a day. I have seen variations out there with cranberries and other items.

Lactation cookies recipie
1 1/2 c. whole wheat flour
1 3/4 c. oats
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1 c. almond butter or peanut butter
1/2 c. butter, softened
1 c. flax
3 T brewer's yeast
1 c. water
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 c. sugar
1/2 c. brown sugar
2 tsp vanilla
2 large eggs
2 c. (12oz) chocolate chips
1 c. chopped nuts of your choice

Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit
Combine flour, baking soda, cinnamon and salt in a bowl.
In a large bowl, beat almond butter, butter, sugar, brown sugar, vanilla, brewer's yeast, flax and water until creamy.
Mix in eggs.
Gradually beat in flour mixture.
Mix in nuts and chocolate chips.
Add oats slowly, mixing along the way.
Place balls of dough onto greased baking sheets or baking stones.
Press down each ball lightly with a fork.
Bake 12 minutes.


personal experience
Disclosure: This post was NOT sponsored nor was any financial compensation was received for this post. Top Notch Material blog always provides honest opinions, beliefs or experiences on products and services reviewed. The information presented above is NOT to replace the advice of your medical professionals and is for informational purposes only. Please speak with your physician or other medical providers prior to taking any supplements. You may share recipes in email or websites or IN PART, as long as credit is given to Top Notch Material as the author and provide a clickable text link DIRECTLY to the recipe on our blog. You may not sell or charge for access for any recipes copied from this blog. If sharing on Pinterest or other social media, please do not replicate entire recipe in description; please provide direct link to this post. If you have any questions or would like your product, service or company featured on Top Notch Material, please contact Katrina from The Nurse Mommy at katrina {at} gmail [dot] com. The disclosure is done in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission 10 CFR, Part 255 Guides Concerning the use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.


  1. Not quite relevant to me- but I'll keep it in mind. I have some friends expecting!

  2. My sister just had a baby, I'm going to share this great post with her, thanks for sharing :D

  3. When I will become a mommy, I know where to go for some tips:)

  4. Those are some great tips. I was always researching about this when I was breastfeeding. This would have been a great start.

    Michelle F.

  5. The cookies look delicious. I will have to pass this on to my niece who is breast feeding. I think she will love it.

  6. I do not know anyone breast feeding right now.. but when i do i will send this to them..

  7. I'll pass this along with family who breastfeed. Thanks

  8. No more babies for me, but I'll definitely keep this bookmarked when my friends have babies! Great info thanks!!!

  9. I will share with a few new to be mommies I know.

  10. Now I miss my little guy being a baby. He was the only one I was able to breast feed the longest. I would have loved to read this when I was searching for info like this.

  11. This is really interesting. I have not used these in the past nor heard of this. Great tips for sure. Too late for me but great for those having babies. Thanks for sharing the great tips. Rita Spratlen

  12. bookmarking the cookies recipe thanks and not sure why but in my country alfalfa smoothies and flax seeds drinks are popular to increase your milk supply.

  13. I'll share this with my wife who is breastfeeding my daughter!

  14. Thank you so much! I've used some of these previously but I'm going to post this for my Frugal Mama group too- we get these questions all the time. Great post!

    Stopping by to say hello and dish with you for a minute x

  15. Wow, that seems like a fun way to increase milk supply. I am all done having babies, but I will pass this on to my other breast feeding mammas.

  16. Can I just say how much that I love the disclaimer. I had postpartum depression after my son was born. Alternative medicine can affect/trigger mental health issues. So thank you for pointing that out.

  17. wow - so much info here. You blog is jam packed with info.

  18. I am long done having babies and have zero plans to have any more. I will definitely have to pas this on to some who are planning on having babies.

  19. Those cookies are a perfect gift ideas for friends or relatives who are having baby. This post is very useful and thank you for sharing your great tips.

  20. Never thought there is a lactation cookie. I wish I knew this before because I could share it to my friend. Interesting how small the stomach of a new born and how much milk the baby needed.

  21. I am going to share this article with my daughter who is currently pregnant with twins. I am sure it will help her tremendously thank you.

  22. I would surely pass this information along to a mother in need of learning these tips.

  23. I will pass along this information to a friend that is nursing. Thanks for the great tips. I`ve never heard of lactation cookies before.

  24. not relevant for me, shall pass on to a friend who is expecting in August..

  25. I didn't know there were ways to increase the milk supply. Good to know.

  26. My sister is due next month so I am going to share this with her. She is planning to breastfeed. Thanks for sharing.

  27. Great info for those that are breastfeeding. Not relevant to me but great for others.

  28. I'll share this with the ladies I know in this situation. Be well.

  29. Having Drumsticks can also help increase breast milk post partum

  30. Great tips, not for me but I'm sure all lactating moms will appreciate this post a lot

  31. I wish I knew a lactating mom to pass this on to.

  32. I have never seen a visual of the growth of a babies stomach. It's amazing to see the difference between a new born and a 1 month old. I remember those days and weeks after bringing my 2 children home from the hospital. The 1 1/2 to 2 hours of round the clock feeding is so much more understandable after seeing the size and volume of a newborn's stomach.

  33. Thanks for sharing the info. I know many women will find this helpful.

  34. This one is a big help. Thank you for sharing and will bookmark this. I know some of the pills you listed below and their natural medicine to increase breast milk flow.

  35. I've been browsing on-line greater than 3 hours as of late, yet
    I by no means discovered any attention-grabbing article like yours.
    It is beautiful worth enough for me. In my view,
    if all website owners and bloggers made just right content as you probably did, the internet shall be a lot more useful
    than ever before.

    Look at my weblog