Breastfeeding is the natural and preferred way to provide nourishment to your baby according to most healthcare professionals. But it isn’t always easy. There are a variety of factors that can lead to a slowed supply of milk, and blessed thistle breastfeeding supplements may be the answer to your nursing needs. Learn more in this blog post!
The importance of breastfeeding has been widely accepted by many international health organizations. Not only does it encourage the mother-child bond, but it provides essential nutrients an infant needs during early stages of life for healthy growth and development. However, sometimes mothers who are nursing may find it difficult to produce enough breast milk to feed their baby.
Factors Affecting Breast Milk Supply
“Various factors can cause a low milk supply during breastfeeding, such as waiting too long to start breastfeeding, not breastfeeding often enough, supplementing breastfeeding, an ineffective latch, and use of certain medications,” says Elizabeth LaFleur, R.N. in an article for the Mayo Clinic. “Sometimes previous breast surgery affects milk production. Factors such as premature birth, maternal obesity, pregnancy-induced high blood pressure, and poorly controlled insulin-dependent diabetes can also affect milk production.”
LaFleur continues to explain that although many new mothers worry about a low or slowed milk supply, it’s actually rare. “In fact,” she says, “most women make one-third more breast milk than their babies typically drink.”
But what if you still need help?
Blessed Thistle Breastfeeding Options
According to Donna Murray, RN, BSN, blessed thistle is a galactagogue, which is a food, drug, or herb that promotes natural breast milk production. Murray notes that blessed thistle seems to work best when combined with other herbs that also promote milk production. There are capsules available in just such formulas, such as More Milk Plus from Motherlove (liquid capsules) and Lactation Blend from Vitanica (vegetarian capsules).
Though these capsules, in addition to tea blends such as Flor-Essence Gentle Detox Tea from Flora, are readily available, we encourage you to talk to your healthcare provider or lactation specialist about introducing blessed thistle breastfeeding supplements into your diet. Dosage recommendations for blessed thistle may vary from person to person depending on the reason for the slowed milk production.
How Quick Are Results?
“Like all herbs, blessed thistle doesn’t work for everyone,” Murray says. “However, some breastfeeding mothers do report an increase in breast milk after using blessed thistle for only a few days. When fenugreek is also taken, blessed thistle appears to work even better.”
She also recommends that breastfeeding mothers using blessed thistle breastfeeding supplements more often and pump between regular feedings. However, pregnant women should never take blessed thistle supplements.
What’s Your Experience?
Have you tried blessed thistle breastfeeding supplements to promote milk production? Tell us about your experiences in the comments below. We’d love to hear from you.