My nursing babe is going through a growth spurt and it’s prompted me to increase my fluid intake with this nursing mom tea to keep up my milk supply. I’ve noticed that if I skimp on or skip a meal, not only do I not feel well, but my supply seems to decrease immediately. But if I aim for three solid meals per day plus sometimes a smoothie in the afternoon or after dinner, my energy levels are high and my supply is great.
Pregnancy, breastfeeding & just being a mama is so demanding and it’s so easy to get distracted with all the tasks at hand that I sometimes forget about self-care. This happened a lot more when I first became a mom but I’ve thankfully gotten better since. Now that I’m through the “fourth trimester” and my baby is getting bigger, I’ve been reminding myself how crucial it is to stay on top of the nutritional demands of nursing and focusing on nourishing and helping my body, and in turn my family, thrive.
Sleep, Move, Nourish
I’m trying to focus on 3 things to support my body in this demanding time:
- SLEEP- Be in bed by 10:30pm to keep a healthy internal clock
- MOVE – Exercise 4-5 days per week
- NOURISH – Eat nutrient dense, filling meals filled with good protein, fats, probiotics, and lots of veggies and increase my fluid intake.
The other night my daughter was chugging her way through the night and I thought, “I’m gonna want some galactagogues in the morning.”(In case you’re wondering, galactagogues are foods that support and increase breastmilk production.) A whole quart of warm herbal tea was the perfect thing.
Here are some herbal teas known to benefit milk production:
- Red Raspberry Leaf: RRL is wonderful for women’s reproductive health. It’s rich in potassium, calcium, magnesium, Vitamin C and others. I drink this all throughout pregnancy and when I’m breastfeeding.
- Nettle Leaf: Another mineral rich herb purported to be anti-inflammatory as well. I drink this along with RRL throughout pregnancy and breastfeeding.
- Chamomile: A favorite of mine that my grandmother started giving me when I was an infant and fussy. Chamomile has wonderful relaxing properties and I add it to many of my herbal tea blends.
- Fenugreek: Used for centuries to aid digestion and increase mama’s milk supply. In this study, fenugreek proved useful for boosting breastmilk production and increasing infant birth weight regain in the first week postpartum.
- Blessed Thistle: A bitter herb which also supports digestion and lactation.
- Alfalfa: An extremely nutrient rich herb. Its impressively long roots allow it to reach deep into the soil and pull up essential vitamins – B, A, D, E and K – and minerals – iron, calcium, magnesium, phosphorus and potassium. It’s also a source of protein and aids digestion and lactation.
- Fennel: Used for centuries to support digestion, lactation and menstrual health.
Nursing Mom Tea
- Red Raspberry Leaf
- Nettle Leaf
- Blessed Thistle
- Fill a glass jar half way up with equal parts RRL and nettle then add roughly equal parts of the rest of the herbs mentioned above to fill. Mix well.
- To make 1 quart of tea, bring 1 quart of water to a boil.
- Turn off heat and steep 2 tablespoons of herbal blend for 10-15 minutes.
Mountain Rose Herbs is my favorite source for everything herbal. When I don’t have all the herbs on hand I use whichever I have.
Digestive Herbs & Colic
It’s interesting to note that a lot of these galactagogue herbs help with digestion as well. My grandmother constantly reminds me that anything I consume passes through my milk, so these herbs may not only supports breastmilk supply but also baby’s digestion. There is some research, like this study and this study, that supports the idea that digestive herbs may relieve infantile colic.
Of course, herbal and supplement galactagogues can’t replace the nutrient dense diet required to make plenty of nutrient dense breastmilk and keep mom healthy. This nursing mom tea helps support healthy breastmilk flow and is warm, calming and rich tasting.
*Don’t forget to make sure that the use of these or any herbs are safe for you during breastfeeding by checking with your midwife or doctor.