Have you noticed the crazy abundance of suggestions in circulation for increasing your milk production? New moms can get buried in the avalanche of well-intentioned and/or just plain crazy advice offered up by neighbors, the checkout lady at Whole Foods, and your mother-in-law. Everyone's got an opinion on how to increase milk supply. Our favorite suggestions:
- Put cabbage in your bra.
- Don’t put cabbage in your bra, that's weird.
- Lactation Tea
- Fenugreek cookies
- Drink beer
- Put that beer down, for shame!
- Coconut oil (obvi).
To be fair, there’s some amount of anecdotal evidence behind these suggestions. For example, cabbage in the bra has been shown to reduce engorgement but it can also reduce your supply, which makes it good for weaning, not boosting supply. The best tried-and-true, research-backed method is pretty simple:
If you want more milk, empty the breast COMPLETELY and OFTEN.
“Completely” means express until the breast is empty and you can’t massage, pump, or express any more drops out. Breasts should feel soft when you’re done.
“Often” means more often than your baby is eating and/or more often than you are currently pumping. Yes, sleep be damned.
Consume cookies, tea, beer, and cabbage to your own taste.
Disclaimer: You probably already know this, but we’re not doctors. If you’re experiencing serious issues with your supply, please consult your doctor or a lactation consultant!