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6 Foods that could boost your breast milk supply

Avital Norman Nathman is a freelance writer whose work places a feminist lens on a variety of topics, including motherhood, maternal health, gender, and reproductive rights. Her work has been featured in Bitch magazine,,...

Yummy foods to help a breastfeeding mom up her supply

Ever heard of galactagogues? If you're a breastfeeding mom, they could be your new best friend.

Galactagogue is a fancy way to describe something that helps increase your breast milk supply. From oatmeal to sesame seed bagels, there are plenty of foods you could be snacking on to boost your milk supply.

Check out the top tips for foods that help boost your milk supply.

Foods that boost your breast milk supply
Image: Becci Burkhart/SheKnows

1. Soup

Warm, nourishing soups can help encourage milk production as they heal postpartum bodies. Amy Mager, a lactation consultant, acupuncturist and practitioner of Chinese medicine explains how soup can help. "You want to first be eating warming foods that build Qi, life force and blood," she tells SheKnows. "Chicken soup is queen for postpartum mamas to nourish, warm, heal and make milk. When one is vegetarian, then lentil soup is a good substitute for chicken soup — especially with some miso used in the broth."

More: 12 Women scandalously breastfeeding without a cover

2. Oatmeal

Many people suggest that eating a bowl of oatmeal every day is helpful to boost your milk supply. Some connect it to the high source of iron in oatmeal, which can help. Enjoy your oatmeal as a hot breakfast cereal, or perhaps even in a batch of oatmeal cookies.

3. Sesame seeds

Sesame seeds are high in calcium, which is great for increasing your milk supply. While they work best when crushed, you can still enjoy a sesame seed bagel. For an added bonus, top it with some tahini spread (made with sesame seeds!).

More: 4 Natural ways to soothe your sore breastfeeding nipples

4. Fenugreek

Much has been said about this herb that can be found in many teas that specialize in boosting milk supply. While it can help increase milk production in as little as a few days, there are some people who should avoid it. If you have asthma or certain allergies, use caution if using fenugreek. Those with thyroid issues, or who are hypoglycemic, or who take blood thinners may want to avoid it altogether.

5. Dates

Dates support and nourish the blood, according to Mager, which helps with milk production. "You can eat them in soup, by themselves or pour hot water on them." You can even add them to a batch of oatmeal cookies for double the power!

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6. Water

While not a food, remaining hydrated is one of the best ways to make sure you are producing enough breast milk. Keep a full water bottle by you to help remind you to stay hydrated, and so that you drink before you even feel thirsty. Try to get into the habit of drinking when your baby drinks!

While some of these tried-and-true home remedies may not work for everyone, there's no harm in eating an extra oatmeal cookie now and then if it might possibly help with breast milk production! If you are truly concerned about your milk supply, make an appointment with your doctor or a local lactation consultant.

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