Breastfeeding moms are masters of multitasking. Most moms can admit to scrolling social media, cooking dinner, or reading a book while breastfeeding their baby. But have you ever thought about the benefits of "monotasking" as a breastfeeding mom? Although you have a million things to do, taking a few minutes during your day to focus on the moment at hand through meditation is incredibly beneficial. The reasons you should meditate as a breastfeeding mom are powerful, and might convince you to take a few minutes to slow down everyday, whether it's during your actual breastfeeding sessions or not.
An article from The Huffington Post pointed out a few of the life-changing benefits of meditation. And although breastfeeding and meditation are rarely talked about together, meditation can only do amazing things for breastfeeding moms as well — from decreased stress, to increased self-awareness, to a more balanced milk supply.
The next time you're tempted to multitask in an effort to alleviate stress and cross things off your list, take a few moments to meditate and be in the moment instead. Your breastfeeding journey won't be the only area of your life to benefit.
1. It Can Help With Letdown And Supply
If you choose to meditate during your actual nursing sessions — a practice, that according to Modern Mom can be incredibly calming and connecting for you and your baby — your letdown reflex and overall supply might benefit as well. According to Low Milk Supply, practicing deliberate relaxation is extremely helpful for a healthy letdown reflex. In fact, your letdown depends on relaxation. If you're tense, stressed, or unfocused, you may be struggling to letdown at all, which can lead to engorgement and ultimately a poor supply. Meditation while breastfeeding can fix all of that though simply relaxing enough to let your milk flow without distraction.
2. It Can Balance Your Hormones
An article from Mind Body Green noted that regular meditation can keep your cortisol and adrenaline levels in check. Additionally, oxytocin and prolactin — the hormones produced through breastfeeding — are heightened through meditation, which can be especially beneficial for moms who struggle with a slow letdown.
3. It Can Balance Your Emotions
One study from the University of California San Fransisco noted that teachers who practiced meditation regularly were more calm and compassionate towards their students, showing decreased levels of stress. Although the study is not specific towards nursing moms, it doesn't take much of a stretch to see the connection for them as well. Between the stresses of new motherhood, postpartum depression, anxiety and more, reaping the benefits of meditation for your emotions is reason enough to start practicing today.
4. It Can Become Much Needed "Me Time"
Alone time is a rarity for most moms, even though it's crucial for their sanity. Learning to prioritize a short meditation session everyday — be it a half hour of yoga before bed, during a nursing session while your baby is calm, or a full on hour of uninterrupted calm — will help your milk supply be healthy and well established and encourage the connectedness of your overall health as well.