Updated: May 6, 2018
Breastfeeding is FREAKING HARD, especially when you're a working mom. As soon as it was time to go back to work, my supply dropped drastically. I was devastated. Some told me not to worry, that Eloise will still be happy on formula and that I needed to take care of myself...
These people were coming from a TOTALLY loving place and only had the best intent with their advice, but breastfeeding was (and is) important to me. I was not willing to let this go. I KNEW that I needed to give my baby the best nutrition I could, no matter what I had to do.
Breastfeeding is all about sacrifice and selflessness...as is motherhood.
After scouring countless blog posts, google searches, mommy threads, and pinterest pins, I felt so defeated. There was no way that I could afford all the supplements or find the time to bake every recipe...plus, I cannot conquer my laziness.
YES. I admit it. I'm lazy, OKAY.
Thankfully, I have figured out a few things that work for me and take minimal effort and are cost-effective.
1. Upspring Milkflow
This is the most expensive product I've used to increase my milk supply, but it is one of the cheapest of its kind. It comes in a powder form and there are a few flavor options you can choose from.
For convenience, I buy the Mixed Berry flavor. I can easily mix it in a water bottle when I am on the go.
BUT my favorite flavor is their Chocolate. It tastes AMAZING with chocolate almond milk.
2. Chocolate Almond Milk
Almond milk can get pricey, but if you shop at ALDI, they carry their own and it actually tastes quite delicious. I always keep a carton in my fridge for when I'm craving something sweet and chocolate-y.
3. Oatmeal, Brewer's Yeast & Flax Meal
These are obvious, I'm sure that everyone has heard of this combo.
--a packet of your favorite microwave oatmeal,
--1 tbsp Flax Meal
--1-2 tbsp of Brewer's Yeast
...and you have a super milk-boosting breakfast.
4. Fennel Seeds
My husband bought me a spice rack for Christmas ( from Macy's..it was a Martha Stewart. I remember wanting it SO badly at the time). It came with the spices included. Now, this was SIX YEARS ago, and I have used just about ever spice and seed on that rack, except Fennel. I had no use for it until I learned it could increase my milk output. So I swallowed them by the handful, made fennel water, even pulverized and mixed them into coconut oil to make a salve for my breasts...let me tell you, these are magical.
5. Fenugreek & Vitex
These two supplements are the most effective when it comes to affordable options.
Fenugreek is a seed that has many benefits outside of breastfeeding, but it is said to increase milk production within a 1-3 days.
Vitex is an herb that is used to regulate hormones. This is especially helpful when your monthly cycle returns. Menstruation GREATLY effects your breast milk production. Vitex is a must have for every lactating mother.
6. Think of Your Baby
This one is the EASIEST OF ALL. You love your child, you miss your child. Thinking of that sweet miracle increases the magical maternal hormone called Oxytocin. Production of this love hormone helps keep that milk flowin'!
7. Love on Your Husband
I'd rather not go into detail on this one...you know what I mean. This is an Oxytocin thing, too.
8. Nipple Stimulation
All that nipple cream you're using on those sore, cracked nipples is helping you in more ways than one. You think you're relieving pain, but you're also telling those puppies their work ain't over just yet. Stimulation helps your breasts know they're still being used. Just touch your nipples every now and then...but make sure you're in the appropriate setting, of course. Touching your nips in the check-out line at Target is generally frowned upon.
I hope these tips will help you conquer your milk production! Just remember, God created your amazing body to do amazing things for your baby. Keep calm, breathe and you got this! Happy breastfeeding!