From herbs that increase milk supply to herbs that help new parents feel calmer and more relaxed, discover the best herbal teas for breastfeeding in our latest blog post.
Whether you are an experienced breastfeeder or embarking on the journey for the first time, nursing a new baby comes with both joys and challenges.
For many of us, worries around milk supply (too much? Too little?), sore nipples, and potential dietary intolerances can make breastfeeding feel much more fraught than it should be. Nonetheless, there’s something so special about those snuggly moments – few joys in life can rival the experience of holding a satisfied sleeping baby in your arms.
Truthfully, most people find that their milk supply regularises over time. Sore nipples improve as you and your baby get more experienced with finding a good latch. And far fewer babies have a lactose intolerance than scrolling parenting forums would have you believe.
That said, it is understandable that you want to do the best you can for your baby and to make your breastfeeding journey an enjoyable one. While most of that will come with time and confidence, new parents usually find it reassuring to know they are doing everything they can to breastfeed their babies successfully.
As a result, many of us turn to herbal remedies to support successful breastfeeding. And there’s plenty of natural lactation aids to choose from. Known as galactagogues, these are herbs that are said to increase milk supply. We’ll take you through a few common options in this blog post.
Another part of successful breastfeeding that is often overlooked is the comfort of the breastfeeding parent. Milk flows most easily when you feel calm, relaxed, and bonded to your baby. But worries over nursing, painful nipples, and the ups and downs of postpartum recovery can all make you feel tense and nervous when breastfeeding.
As a result, we’ve also included a few herbal teas on this list that help with relaxation and postpartum recovery.
One of the best herbal teas for breastfeeding is fenugreek, which has been used as a natural lactation aid for centuries. As a galactagogue, it is used to increase milk production and many new parents swear by it. It is thought to work by increasing levels of oxytocin – the hormone responsible for triggering the initial letdown of milk.
Another common herbal tea for increasing breastmilk supply is fennel. Like fenugreek, fennel tea is a galactagogue and studies suggest that drinking it can help with milk production. Fennel is also known for its ability to settle gassy stomachs, which makes it especially useful if your baby is struggling with tummy issues.
3. Shatavari Root
Known as the Queen of Herbs, shatavari root has many benefits for the female reproductive system, including supporting breastfeeding. First, shatavari root is said to increase milk supply. However, it is also an adaptogen, which means it helps with physical and mental stress – something new parents know plenty about. Shatavari root is also a great herb for postpartum recovery, so there are plenty of reasons for new mothers to choose a herbal tea that includes this plant ally.
Another herb that is often used to support breastfeeding is caraway. Like fennel, caraway is said to increase milk supply and reduce gassiness, so it is a favourite with parents whose babies are showing signs of colic.
5. Blessed Thistle
Often used in combination with fenugreek, blessed thistle is another herbal lactation aid that is traditionally used to increase milk supply and support breastfeeding. Like many of the herbs on this list, blessed thistle is also used for digestive support.
6. Raspberry Leaf
A classic herbal tea that is often associated with childbirth and breastfeeding, raspberry leaf tea is a staple in many homes both pre- and postpartum. Its ability to tone the uterus and reduce bleeding makes it a great support for postpartum recovery and it is also known as a galactagogue, so may help with breastfeeding too.
Although it isn’t one of the better-known galactagogues, there is some evidence that chamomile can increase milk supply. It makes our list more for its calming properties than for its direct effect on your breastmilk production, however. Chamomile is well-known for soothing anxiety and helping us relax – crucial for a positive breastfeeding journey.
Our own herbal tea for breastfeeding and postpartum wellbeing is NutraMother, which contains all the herbs on this list. Naturally caffeine-free, it has been carefully designed to support you on your breastfeeding journey, encourage calm and relaxation, and boost postpartum recovery.