Certain foods - known as galactagogue foods - are known to stimulate the production of breastmilk. Here's a partial list: apricots, asparagus, green beans, carrots, sweet potatoes, peas, pecans, wheat germ, and oatmeal.
All leafy greens such as beet greens, parsley, watercress, and dandelion leaves are considered helpful in increasing and sustaining lactation.
Here are some herbs to keep in mind that will help you make more milk just remember very important use organic herbs and don't over do: fennel, dill, barley, basil, fenugreek, cumin. Play it safe and use organic herbs and also small amounts and a variety of herbs not just one.
Borage leaves – The leaves of this herb are highly regarded as a tea for increasing milk flow. Half a cupful of borage tea at each nursing insures an abundant supply of milk, acts as a mild laxative, and soothes jangled nerves.
Dill - For pregnant women or those breast feeding, dill is recommended because it enhances the vitality and the general tonus, it increases the appetite, it stimulates lactic secretion and improves milk quality. Dill also helps the baby to get rid of colic.
Carrots not only stimulate lactation, but have a role in improving the quality of the milk.
Fennel/Barley Water - Prepare barley water by soaking 1/2 cup pearled (regular) barley in 3 cups cold water overnight or by boiling for 25 minutes. Strain out barley and discard or add to a soup. Heat a cup or two of the barley water to boiling as needed, store the rest in the refrigerator. Pour 1 cup boiling barley water over 1 teaspoon fennel seeds and steep for no longer than 30 minutes. The combination not only increases the breast milk, but eases after-pains and settles the digestion of mom and babe.
Also don't forget:
- Water – drink lots of water - at least 10 to 12 cups per day!
- Rest – Nap during the day this will increase your milk supply. When the body is weary, it will not be so inclined to produce milk.
- Food - Eat a healthy balanced diet