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How To Increase Your Milk Supply?

You must have read that size and shape of breast doesn't matter when it comes to breastfeeding. That part is true. The mother's breast is designed for breastfeeding her newborn irrespective of its configuration. But the supply is an issue, at least with some mothers. And they feel a change in diet may help. The truth is, according to experts, you don't have to be on any special diet; it's a simple case of a healthier you, a better you.

Your health, your energy level, your state of mind all affect your ability to give milk and therefore the milk supply!

Good Nutrition Helps

A well-balanced, healthy diet is all it takes to maintain a healthy milk supply. You should continue to eat 'for two' the way you did during pregnancy, not in terms of quantity but quality. The first couple of months can be hectic and stressful to the point where your own needs will take a backseat. The food pyramid you studied in your school days will come in handy now. It's a helpful way to plan a healthy daily menu. The pyramid is based on the six food groups which are described to serve as a recap!

Complex carbohydrates form the largest portion of your diet, therefore the base of the pyramid. You will need about 6-11 servings of rice, pasta, cereal, wholemeal bread etc. everyday.

Vegetables follow the first group. About 3-4 servings of it takes care of this category.

Fruits come next and 2-4 servings of it is helpful.

Dairy group i.e. milk, yogurt and cheese, about 2 - 3 servings everyday is beneficial.

Meat group which consists of meat, poultry, fish, eggs, dry beans in 2-3 servings daily help.

Fats, oils and sweets form the top of the pyramid (the smallest category). When you wish to snack try snacking on fresh fruits, vegetable sticks, low fat yogurt, salads with low fat dressings etc instead. Skimp on 'unhealthy' snacks which are laden with the less healthy types of fats, sugar, salt but an occasional treat is okay.

Continue with your Supplements

Along with a healthy varied diet from the lower five groups of the pyramid, you will need vitamins and minerals such as folic acid and iron which are easier to obtain from supplements. Doctors will usually advise you to continue with your prenatal vitamins while breastfeeding. Supplements do not provide the necessary carbohydrates, fats, proteins, fiber etc that food does. Be careful to eat wisely and use supplements as it is intended for: to supplement your food and not become a replacement for a well-balanced diet.

How much you Drink Counts

Liquids become especially important during the nursing phase. You will probably feel thirstier while breastfeeding; do not ignore the signal to drink more. In fact don't wait to drink till you feel thirsty. A thirsty person is likely to be mildly dehydrated. All adults are advised to drink at least 6-8 glasses of fluids; in the case of lactating mothers fluid becomes all the more important and water is the best form followed by low-fat milk and juices.

Key Fact

It is wise to remember that neither the milk quality nor your baby will usually suffer from poor eating habits but your own health might. Your baby will get all its nutrients from your body never mind if you are eating well or not. It becomes important to realize that when breastfeeding, taking care of your baby’s needs depend a lot on taking care of yourself as well.

Add - ons

• Place warm compress on your breasts or have warm showers to boost milk supply.

• Try drinking fenugreek seeds soaked in warm water or try the capsule form.

• Feed your baby more often.

• Express leftover milk after a feed.

• And take plenty of rest. The more rested you are the more comfortable you will feel with breastfeeding.

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Disclaimer: Information contained on this Web site is intended solely to make available general summarized information to the public. It should not be substituted for medical advice. It is your responsibility to consult with your pediatrician and/or health care provider before acting on any advice on this web site. While OEM endeavors to provide up-to-date and accurate information, it is not liable for any advice whatsoever rendered nor is it liable for the completeness or timeliness of any information on this site.
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