Breastfeeding has great health benefits for the newborn and mother alike. Breast milk is a superfood, packed with all vital nutrients, enzymes, and immunity guards that a baby needs. It is one of the best gifts to a newborn by her mother.

Benefits of Breastfeeding to New Mother

  • Breastfeeding leads to quicker postnatal recovery
  • It helps to prevent mineral deficiencies as Anemia and Osteoporosis
  • It prevents gastrointestinal health disorders in the short term
  • In the long run, breastfeeding prevents ovarian and breast cancer
  • It prevents obesity by helping to shed off pregnancy weight
  • Financially, breast milk costs merely one-fourth to formula feeding!

Benefits of Breastfeeding to Baby

Breast milk is an amazing substance that cannot be duplicated by any artificial means. Unique in its composition and function, breast milk is ideal food for your baby to begin her life in this world.

  • It contains an ideal balance of nutrients that the infant can easily digest.
  • The concentration and nutritional profile of the breastmilk changes as the baby grows. In fact, the nutritional profile of breastmilk varies over the course of a day, to meet the changing needs of the baby.
  • It contains substances essential for optimal development of the infant’s brain, with effects on both cognitive and visual function.
  • It supplies growth factors that support the development of a baby’s gut microbiome.
  • It provides the infant with immune factors manufactured to fight allergens and illnesses specific to the mother’s and infant’s environment. 

A Galactagogue naturally increases breast milk production and flow

A Galactagogue boosts breast milk production for lactating mothers hence acts as a natural aid to breastfeeding. Here is a list of our five best herbs and foods, which when consumed during lactation will not only support milk production but also provide the mother with essential nutrients to nurture and keep up with required energy levels.

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MORINGA

  • Moringa leaves are rich in essential vitamins & minerals including Iron, Magnesium, Calcium, Vitamin A, Vitamin E, and Vitamin K.
  • It is also a complete source of plant protein and has high levels of antioxidants.
  • It is rich in fibre too!
  • They are important for mothers especially those who are breastfeeding. You can mix it up in your smoothies.

SHATAVARI

  • It is also known as the Queen of Herbs.
  • It contains important minerals like Calcium, Zinc, and Vitamin B.
  • Shatavari is safe to consume during pregnancy.
  • It is one of the top herbs recommended by gynecologists for all things related to fertility and reproductive system health.
  • It is also beneficial for conceiving and during pregnancy.
  • Shatavari multiplies the quantity and improves the quality of breast milk.
  • It stimulates prolactin and corticoids.
  • Improvement of these two hormones is equal to the improvement of breast milk.

ASHWAGANDHA

  • Ashwagandha is a popular herb in the category of adaptogens, brain boosters, and for reproductive system health.
  • It is prescribed as an important galactagogue.
  • It also increases the quantity and improves the quality of breast milk.
  • There are no side effects and it is good for the physical, mental and sexual health of a person.

FENUGREEK (METHI)

  • It is an important galactagogue herb and has been in use for ages.
  • It is considered safe for breastfeeding but it should be avoided during pregnancy.

TURMERIC

  • Many women are not able to breastfeed their babies because of swollen breasts.
  • Consumption of turmeric can reduce this problem. It reduces the inflammation hence, the nursing mothers are able to breastfeed for a longer period.
  • In Ayurveda, turmeric has shown various beneficial results for various health issues related to the digestive system and immune system.
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FLAX SEEDS

  • Flax Seeds are delicious and nutritious.
  • Flax seeds are rich in Omega 3s, Fibre, and antioxidants.
  • Roast, grind and add them to your savoury or sweet preparations.

Many food products like almonds, coconut, millets, rice, barley, oats, etc. also support both the production and flow of breast milk, hence acting as a natural aid to breastfeeding.

Always consult your doctor if you have milk supply issues. Ask him/her before taking any galactagogue, specifically if you are going through some illness.

Mention it to them if you notice any side effects. Never ever exceed the dosage of your galactagogue which is recommended to you. It can be the reason behind several side effects.

FAQ

1. How can I start lactating naturally?

Stir 2 teaspoons of anise seeds in a glass of warm water. Drink this anise tea 3 times a day for at least 2 months. You can also drink fennel tea or fenugreek tea regularly. Eating fresh milk with a pinch of nutmeg powder added to it, will also help you start lactating quickly. Soak 5-6 almonds overnight and eat them the next morning along with your breakfast. You could also eat other nuts like pistachios, cashews, and walnuts as they will also help increase your milk supply. Include lots of healthy fats in your diet like avocados, olive oil, fish, and flaxseeds as they will help you produce more milk. Consume Fenugreek seeds soaked in water overnight, on an empty stomach every morning. This will help you boost milk supply quickly. Boil 2-3 cloves of garlic in a cup of milk and drink it before going to bed at night for quick results. Eat plenty of green leafy vegetables and drink plenty of fluids especially water, to keep yourself hydrated which is very important when you are breastfeeding. Regular consumption of Brewer’s Yeast will also help you start lactating naturally. Lastly, relax and bond with your new born. When you are relaxed and happy, you will be able to overcome this challenge in a swift and easy manner.

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About the Author

Nidhi Bansal

Nidhi is the Founder of Medhya Herbals, a wellness venture that offers natural health solutions for Women. She has set on a mission to solve & simplify women's health care problems with all natural and holistic Ayurveda. Medhya Herbals offers Ayurvedic treatment through 1:1 Doctor consultations, Personalised Diet, Lifestyle and Exercise plans and online learning programmes. Start healing today!

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