Health Tip Details
Pregnancy and Lactation
Galactogogues:- Foods that will help in Lactation
Like every mother, you would want your little one to have the best start in life. Every mother would want to protect their baby and make sure that the baby becomes a smart and healthy child. The first step towards achieving this is breast feeding.
Breast milk which includes the colostrum i.e. the first form of milk has all the essential nutrients your baby needs in the crucial first years of its life. Breast feeding is not only important for your baby but it also protects you from many illnesses. Most importantly, it brings the mother and child closer in a strong bond of love.
If you spend some time around lactating women you'll hear concerns and worries about not producing enough breast milk.
There’s a solution to this concern which is known as ‘GALACTOGOGUES’.
So now, what does this word specifically mean?? ‘GALACTOGOGUES’ is something that can help a Breast feeding mother to increase her breast milk supply. The word itself is a combination of the Greek terms "galact-" meaning milk, and "-ogogue" meaning leading to or promoting. These substances i.e. the foods or drugs used in galactagogue may be synthetically produced, or plant based. They help in promoting lactation as well as in treatment of low milk supply in a breast feeding mother.
How do they work? Galactogogues are known to contain phyto-estrogens that stimulate the mammary glands to produce more milk.
Natural galactogogues involves foods or herbs that have been naturally found to improve lactation. The natural food products that have been found to have some features of a galactagogue are
- Brown rice
- Chaste berry
- Apricots and
- Marshmallow root.
There are many herbs as well who help in promoting breast milk production. And they are:
1. Fenugreek seeds (methi):- The seeds are the only part of this plant that can be used as a natural galactagogue. Fenugreek seeds constitute of complex carbohydrates, fatty acids and alkaloids. Fenugreek is also a natural and powerful galactagogue. The fenugreek seeds are also carminative, this is the reason they ease intestinal cramps or even gas. They reduce lipids and blood sugar levels. They are available in the form of capsules too.
2. Goat’s Rue :- The parts of the plant that are actually necessary and help with lactation are the parts that remain above the ground and not underground, meaning the roots. Goat’s rue consists of certain alkaloids and other nitrogen based components that are important, which makes this plant a very potent and natural galactagogue.
3. Milk Thistle:- This plant consists of lignin and silydianin. Milk thistles are good natural galactogogues. It is recommended that they be used in the form of a tea. A cup of the milk thistle tea can be consumed up to 3 times in a day to improve the milk supply. There are also milk thistle extracts that are available.
4. Hops :- The scaly fruits of this plant which are the strobiles are used as a good source of natural galactogogues. The constituents of this fruit are resin, flavonoids, iso-alpha acids and also phenylated chalcones. These consists of phytoestrogen hence served as a Galactogogue.
5. Stinging Nettles:- The leaves of the stinging nettles constitute of flavonoid glycosides, caffeic and malic acid. Minerals, such as vitamins, chlorophyll, protein and sulphur, are also prevalent in the leaves of the stinging nettles.
So all you lactating mothers who are worried about increasing breast milk should definitely try the foods and herbs stated above. Also, if you are looking for lactation diets to get into shape and as well as increase the nutrition to your child, you should definitely try our therapeutic diet.
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