Milk Supply Q&A plus, Got You-approved Recipes for Breastfeeding Mums!

Find the answers to commonly searched breastfeeding questions: everything from milk supply Qs to pumping hacks, we have the lowdown on making milk for your brand new bebe! Plus, step into your kitchen for just 15 minutes a day, to whip up snacks that’ll nourish your body and support your breastfeeding journey.

 

1. Is my baby getting enough milk?

We promise that nearly every new mum has typed this exact question into Google at lightning speed, at least once during the newborn stage! Between fussiness, mastering the perfect latch and getting to know the rhythm of your new best friend, it is easy to doubt whether you are producing enough milk or not.

 

Run through our ABA-approved[1] checklist below! If you answer yes to at least four of these, your baby is likely getting enough breastmilk:

  • Clear or very pale urine that soaks at least 5-6 nappies in a 24-hour period
  • At least 3 soft or runny poos in a day, each day, in a relatively consistent pattern (only pooping once today and then 5 or 6 times tomorrow can be a sign of inconsistent milk supply – best to check in with an IBCLC or your GP)
  • Some growth and weight gain. If your newborn seems to be losing weight, don’t delay in contacting a trusted health professional so they can weigh your baby and double check your little one’s progress
  • You can gently pinch or squeeze your baby’s skin and it springs healthily back into place – similar to a hydration test!
  • Your little bundle of joy is reasonably happy, most of the time. Unfortunately, this one can be tricky to work out as newborns will go through phases of cluster feeding or be unsettled due to gas. If you baby is waking during the night to feed and seems content after a full feed off one or both breasts, it’s a good indicator you are producing enough milk!

 

 2. How to increase breast milk production after delivery?

You’ve probably heard it again and again but supply = demand. The more you offer your baby the breast, the more milk your body will produce. If you want to give yourself the best chance at bringing allllll that liquid gold in, make sure you:

 

  • Encourage baby to take the whole nipple into their mouth to form a deep and firm (but not painful!) breastfeeding latch
  • Always offer the breast first and avoid using a pacifier in the first couple of weeks
  • Drink literally litres and LITRES of water. Every day!
  • Reduce (or totally eliminate) stress where you can. Feeling stressed out and anxious hinders milk production.
  • Keep noshing away at snacks throughout the day and night, especially if your little one is cluster feeding. Take a peep at our Got You approved recipes below

 

3. Are there any foods to avoid while breastfeeding?

Luckily, breastmilk is a complete source of food for a baby and our bodies are very, very good at filtering out any nasties when it comes to makin’ milk! For the most part, unless specifically advised from a trusted Health Professional, it is safe to consume a wide variety of foods, but limit,

 

  • Alcohol – many studies have proven that alcohol can be found in your bloodstream anywhere from 30 minutes[2] up to 2 hours[3] after consuming just one standard drink.
  • Caffeine – found in soft drinks, chocolate, coffee, tea and energy drinks, it is recommended to keep tabs on how much you are consuming and limit it to 300mg of caffeine a day while breastfeeding!

There is a lot of old, biased and outdated myths which advise you to limit vegetables which could cause gas in a newborn (such as broccoli and cabbage) or to decrease your intake of fish (due to mercury levels), but modern recommendations state that if you are eating these foods in normal amounts, it won’t affect breastfeeding!

 

 4. Why is one breast producing less milk?!

 

Or maybe one breast products more milk? However you want to word it, an uneven supply between the two girls is not uncommon and won’t necessarily affect your ability to nourish your little bebe! Your boobs are made up of fatty tissue and tiny little, hard working milk glands.

The amount of milk these glands can make and store, varies a lot from woman to woman and the size of your boobs doesn’t indicate how much milk you will produce. Having one larger breast/ one breast producing more milk just means you have more milk glands, or perhaps their storage capacity is bigger.

Remember to always offer both breasts to your little one and allow them to fully drain the side that produces less milk first to encourage it to produce a more “even” supply.  

 

5. What are your tips on how to use a breast pump?

Rather than churning out the same old pumping do’s and don’ts, we asked mamas in the thick of breastfeeding and pumping, what they’re top tips are for breast pump use, especially in the early days!

 

  • See an IBCLC to have the right flange size fitted for your nipples! It can be really painful otherwise and even cause long term damage to your milk ducts.
  • If you have a busy toddler as well as newborn or find yourself on the go, invest in a small, portable pump (like the Milkbar or Elvie) so you don’t always feel so tied to the couch.
  • Give your boobs a gentle compression massage, prior to starting the pump as skin to skin will always encourage a letdown better than pumping suction.
  • Switch up the suction of your pump throughout the feed to mimic how a baby would suckle, this can encourage more letdowns.
  • Pump on a regular schedule to tell your boobs that demand is HIGH. This leads to an increased milk supply.

 

Recipes for Breastfeeding Mums

Feeling more at ease mama?! We hope so! We also couldn’t do a blog post on milk supply, without including five of our favourite, Got You-approved recipes designed to boost your milk supply when breastfeeding and pumping. We stuck to a reallyyyy strict criteria so rest assured, these recipes are:

  • Super QUICK to make – we know you’re short on time and these recipes will only take about 15 minutes to whip together!
  • Really easy
  • Almost a complete meal, in snack form, so you’ll feel satiated for longer.

 

Healthy Chocolate Chip Lactation Granola Bars from Eco Living Mama (https://ecolivingmama.com/chocolate-chip-lactation-granola-bars/). Satiate that 3pm chocolate craving with these granola bars, packed with milk-making goodness. Just the afternoon pick-me-up you need.

 

Overnight Superfood Oatmeal from Tastes Lovely (https://www.tasteslovely.com/overnight-superfood-oatmeal/). Grab breakfast straight out of the fridge and settle in for a marathon morning feed. This recipe gets bonus points because it’s cold, meaning no harm done to bub if you spill a little on their head mid-mouthful. 😂

 

The Ultimate Breastfeeding Smoothie from Body Fabulous (https://bodyfabulous.com.au/2017/08/10/boost-milk-supply-breastfeeding-smoothie/). We absolutely adore this smoothie recipe, not only does it taste like a reward for all your hard breastfeeding work, but it’s packed with healthy fats and protein to boost your milk supply!

 

Nursing Omelette from Urban Mommies (https://www.urbanmommies.com/nursing-omelet/). Yep, that’s right. Eggs, plus the whipping cream, butter and avocado in this recipe ensures you’re consuming enough fat to support healthy milk production. You can also double this recipe, pour into a muffin tray and bake for individual eggy snacks.

 

 

[1] Australian Breastfeeding Association, “Is my baby getting enough milk?” 2017

[2] Centres for Disease Control and Prevention, “Is it safe for mothers to breastfeed their infant if they have consumed alcohol?” 2021

[3] Australian Breastfeeding Association, “Alcohol and Breastfeeding” 2018