When to avoid fenugreek as a breastfeeding supplement

When to avoid fenugreek as a breastfeeding supplement

Many breastfeeding mamas find their milk supply isn’t enough to keep baby well fed. This first thing to remember is this is not your fault! Everybody’s supply is different and you haven’t done anything wrong if you need help in this area.

If you are looking to boost your breastmilk supply naturally, you will find friends, family and medical professionals may recommend fenugreek for breastfeeding. However, this is not always the best ingredient to rely on.

The truth about fenugreek

While some women have no trouble taking fenugreek as a tea or in powdered form, it is not without potential side effects or risks.

It may surprise you to discover fenugreek can actually cause an allergic reaction in mums who have peanut or chickpea allergy. This ingredient comes from the same ‘food family’ so it is best avoided if you have experienced allergic reactions in the past.

Fenugreek can also cause problems if you have diabetes or hypoglycemia due to its side effect of lowering glucose levels. If you do decide to use fenugreek for breastfeeding and you have diabetes, make sure you keep an eye on your blood glucose levels.

Another complication when using fenugreek for breastfeeding is that it has been known to cause an upset stomach. If you take too much fenugreek, you can have issues with loose stools and painful wind. Yikes!

Unfortunately, this can also affect your baby as anything you ingest will be shared through your breastmilk. Stick to small amounts of fenugreek to avoid this problem.

The good news is fenugreek is not the only natural way to boost your milk supply. A collection of herbs known as galactagogues all act to increase your production. These include:  

  • Fennel, which not only helps to increase supply but also relieves gas and stomach troubles.
  • Goat’s Rue, which can help stimulate your breast milk production, especially if you have trouble with your supply from early on.
  • Caraway, which stimulates your breast milk production and is known to be healthy for you and your baby.
  • Aniseed, which can help treat blocked ducts while acting to increase your milk supply.

MaterniTea’s ProsperiTea Blend contains all these ingredients, as well as Lemon Balm, to help improve mood and sleep. This caffeine-free tea not only provides a natural way to increase your supply, it is delicious and refreshing.

Remember that while breast is best, the most important thing is for baby to be fed and happy. Speak to your doctor for advice if you are struggling to keep up with your baby’s hungry tummy.

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