Any mom who's struggled with low milk supply knows how stressful it can be. Whether you're trying to figure out how to add an extra pumping session into your tight schedule or overwhelmed with the pills and teas that claim to increase your milk supply, you're probably wishing there was an easier solution. Although more frequent nursing is always your best bet, there are a few things you could try, including the sandwich that could increase your milk supply.
Nursing moms get ravenous, and for good reason. According to Kelly Mom, the average breastfeeding mom needs to take in about 300 to 500 extra calories a day to maintain her pre-pregnancy weight and to encourage adequate milk supply. Of course, no one expects you to count those calories. But it is important to eat when you're hungry and maintain a well-balanced diet for your own benefit, not just for your milk supply.
If you're battling low production, you might be able to fix yourself a lunch that can not only satisfy your hunger, but increases your milk supply. The number one thing to remember is that galactagogues, foods and herbs that increase milk supply, do not have a lot of scientific research to back up their magical powers. Kelly Mom noted that if your milk supply is truly low, a galactagogue probably won't solve your problems. Instead, you should combine any food or herb you eat with more frequent nursing, pumping, and proper latch to ensure that you're doing all you can to increase your milk supply. Simply eating an herb that claims to help with production won't work.
Keeping all that in mind, there is one sandwich that might be able to help — Cook Nourish Bliss's fresh herb white bean and avocado sandwich.
Um, delicious, right? Here's the thing, alfalfa sprouts could potentially increase your milk supply. According to the American Pregnancy Association, alfalfa has a mild effect on milk supply and can be taken in tea, food, or pill form. This sandwich includes alfalfa sprouts as a topping, which means you could get that yummy flavor of the nutty sprout while still helping your milk production and filling your tummy.
But the sandwich is also pretty damn delicious. With red onion, avocado, white beans, and a great marbled bread, you're also just getting a really great sandwich out of the deal. And eating something you love may help your milk production, even if the galactagogues aren't beneficial. If you're stressed about your milk supply, you could potentially make it worse — according to Kelly Mom, stress can affect your pumping output and let-down, making it feel like you have a low milk supply. Lactation consultant Nadine Fournier tells Romper that galactagogues can have a placebo effect on breastfeeding moms, meaning they assume the galactagogue will work, so they are more relaxed when nursing and are able to increase their own supply with less stress.
International Board Certified Lactation Consultants Alyse Lange and Kristin Gourley agree. "Being relaxed can help with milk let-down because oxytocin doesn't release as easy if mom has high stress and thus cortisol levels," Gourley says.
Knowing all of that, the fresh herb white bean and avocado sandwich from Cook Nourish Bliss may be just what you need to help your milk supply. It's yummy, it includes galactagogues, and when you combine it with increased nursing and/or pumping, you just might see some results. Remember, galactagogues aren't guaranteed to help, but if they can help relax you (and taste delicious), they're worth a try. If you think your low milk supply needs extra help, contact an IBCLC for a feeding assessment.