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Throughout time, in every country and culture, mothers have taken special foods or herbs to help them make milk.We don’t have nearly enough scientific documentation yet to prove their effectiveness, but many of these traditions are supported by centuries of experience. Cultural wisdom, though not always proven accurate, often contains truth that is worth considering.

If you bypassed earlier blogs and skipped to this one looking for an immediate way to increase supply, keep in mind that galactogogues can’t compensate for a milk supply problem if milk removal is not sufficiently frequent and effective.

Identifying and addressing all contributing factors to your low production first will give you the best shot at success. Then, galactogogues may help speed up the process.

The decision of when to use galactogogues should be made based on your circumstances and personal comfort level and with the input of your lactation counselors and/or health care providers. In most cases, it’s wise to give your body at least four to seven days after birth to try and do its job before intervening.

Prolactin-stimulating drugs and herbs are less likely to be effective until prolactin begins to drop toward the end of the first or second week (unless you know you have low prolactin).

It usually takes at least four to seven days to see the initial galactogogue effect, though some response may be seen within forty-eight hours. Simple situations involving secondary causes usually require only short-term use, approximately one to four weeks.

Once full milk production is reestablished, the galactogogue is gradually reduce.In more difficult cases, a galactogogue may be required indefinitely to sustain a higher level of milk production, though many mothers find that they can reduce their dosages after the first six months.

Lactogenic Foods: Setting the Stage for a Good Milk Supply

Traditional societies view food as more than just nutrition; it is also their medicine. New mothers are fed foods believed to support good milk production, and special concoctions may be created if more milk is needed. In the East Indian Ayurvedic tradition they have 7 special foods :

1*Almonds

2*coconut

3*Brown sesame seeds

4*Rice pudding with milk and sugar

5*pumpkin

6*sunflower seeds

7* white sesame seeds

source: Wikimedia commons

are often recommended to support or increase production .

In the Chinese tradition, 9 foods that are considered the best supportive of lactation strengthen, the center and regulate body warmth and fluids. These include :

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