Many women (regardless of their dietary choices) have issues with breastfeeding and or lactation. It can be a cause of great concern for a mother when her newborn is unable to feed, or if her breast milk does not supply enough milk for the baby.

Many parents will immediately turn to either bottle feeding with formula, or start using a  breast pump to increase breast milk production.

I personally feel that mothers should try to use breast milk as a first option, and only move to formula if she or the child is having lots of difficulties with breastfeeding. There are plenty of articles online stating the benefits of breastfeeding over bottle feeding, which is why using a breast pump can be a good alternative.

Anyway, now that everyone knows my thoughts on breastfeeding over bottle feeding, let’s get down to business and look at the best vegetarian foods for increasing your milk supply.

 

1. Water

cocktail-585315_640OK, so while not technically a food, having more water is the best way to increase your milk supply, that is other than ensuring you drain your breasts after every feed.

Make sure you drink around 10 glasses a day. At first it will seem like a lot, but after a while you will get used to it.

 

2 . Oatmeal

blueberries-531209_640I remember someone telling me that oatmeal was good for breast milk when I had my first, and I thought they must be high on something, but I researched it and it’s true. Not only that, but I tried it myself and it worked (well, it seemed to).

 

Remember to use Almond milk when making your oatmeal.

 

 

3.  Garlic

garlic-545223_640

So this doesn’t actually increase your milk supply as much as it entices your baby to drink more – this in turn entices your breasts to produce more milk. Apparently babies like the taste of garlic. So tuck in ladies.

Note: It also has the added advantage of keeping vampires away :p

 

4. Sesame Seeds

sesame-315502_640Sesame seeds are well regarded when it comes to increasing breast milk, but you have to remember to eat the seeds in their husks (crushed of course). They are also crazy good for your calcium intake, so get into them.

 

5. Spinach

green-422995_640It’s not just Popeye that gets a buzz out of spinach, but breastfeeding moms can also get in on the action too. Spinach is also a great source of calcium, folic acid and vitamins  A & K.

In fact, you should try to eat spinach the entire way though your pregnancy as folic acid is well known to aid in the development of your baby.

 

6. Papaya

papaya-331273_640It’s not all vegetables, there are also some fruits that will help you to increase lactation. Papaya’s have been used (mainly in Asia) for quite a long time as a way to increase milk supply in breastfeeding mothers.

The science is still out on why papaya works, but some believe it is due to the natural sedative power that Papaya has, which in turn helps you to relax and thus enable the milk to flow more readily.

 

If none of these help you then it might be time to see your doctor, or a lactation specialist. Remember, the most important thing is that you are relaxed and that your child is being well feed. If you aren’t able to breastfeed, it isn’t the end of the world – there is plenty of support available.