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Breastfeeding: Foods that help increase breastmilk

Post childbirth, mothers start lactating to feed their newborn. Even though it is a physiological process, there are certain foods that can boost a mother’s breast milk supply. Here’s what you should eat.

1. Fenugreek or methi seeds

Studies indicate that fenugreek seeds have galactogogues, which help in breast milk production in mothers postpartum. Many doctors suggest new mothers to include fenugreek in their diet to improve their milk production for the same reason.

2. Fennel seeds or saunf

Like fenugreek, fennel seeds are also thought be effective in boosting breast milk production. Regular intake of fennel can also help aid digestion and relive from constipation which is common post-delivery.

3. Garlic

While garlic is known for its therapeutic and herbal properties, it also aids in breast milk production in new mothers. Some studies have shown that mothers who had garlic in one form or other could breastfeed their infants for a longer duration of time.

4. Cumin seeds or jeera

Cumin seeds or jeera help in stimulating milk production in lactating mothers. They are also a rich source of iron and help build strength postpartum.

5. Sesame seeds or til

Both black and white sesame seeds or til are an excellent source of calcium and copper. Apart from these, they are also packed with other micro-nutrients beneficial for both mother and baby.

6. Carom seeds or ajwain

Carom seeds or ajwain are available in almost every household and are known to aid digestion and relieve symptoms of constipation. It also help increase milk production in lactating mothers.

7. Oats

Oats are a good breakfast option packed with calcium, fibre and iron. A bowl full of oats in the breakfast can help to improve lactation.

8. Green vegetables

It is a popular belief that vegetables from the gourd family like bottle gourd, bitter gourd, apple gourd (tinda) and sponge gourd (tori) aids lactation postpartum. Apart from this, these vegetables are easy to digest and have high nutritional value.

9. Red vegetables

Sweet potatoes, yam, carrots and beetroots are high in beta carotene and should be included in the diet of a lactating woman. Apart from increasing breast milk, they also help to boost liver health and save the mother from post-pregnancy anemia being high in iron content.

10. Dried fruits

You can either munch on a handful of dried fruits or add them in various dishes like desserts, dal or curries to reap its benefits.

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