Breast milk is considered as the best source of nutrition for infants. It contains all the necessary nutrients that a newborn needs to grow and develop. However, not all mothers produce enough breast milk to satisfy their babies' hunger cravings. As such, some may resort to using formula milk or even consider drinking more cow's milk in hopes of boosting their breast milk supply.
But does this actually work? Can drinking cow's milk really boost breastmilk production? In this article, we'll be taking a closer look at whether it's fact or fiction.
The Science Behind Breast Milk Production
Before we dive into whether drinking cow's milk can impact breastfeeding, let's first understand how breastmilk is produced.
The process begins with the hormone prolactin which is secreted by the pituitary gland in response to nipple stimulation (such as during breastfeeding). This hormone stimulates the mammary glands in your breasts causing them to grow and produce more milk[^1]. The amount of prolactin released varies among women and different factors can affect its release such as stress levels, fatigue and hydration status[^2].
In addition, your baby also plays an important role in maintaining your lactation supply. Frequent nursing sessions help stimulate your breasts' reflexes leading up-to-date production; therefore producing from day one triggers an optimal amount of lactic oncogenesis[Ibid.].
Now that we've established how breast-milk-production works let’s get back to our main question:
Is there any Scientific Evidence Supporting Cow’s-Milk Increase on Lactation?
There are no studies that confirm that cows' dairy increases human lactation flow! Yes – you read it right - zero evidence was found!1 That being said: consuming dairy doesn't seem like harmful nor have side effects on either mom or baby’s health postpartum.I'm not saying you shouldn't or should consume it. It all depends on your preference and wellbeing.
On the other hand, some studies have suggested that there are certain foods (such as oats, flax seeds) can boost lactation2. These substances contain galactagogue properties, which have been shown to increase breast milk production in lactating mothers[x].
Table 1 displays some alternatives a mother could attempt including dark/green leafy vegetables (spinach-kale), salmon and almonds amongst others - providing for mums who may want to try something outside of comfort zones.
|Food||What's In It?|
|Oats/Flax Seeds||Compounds stimulate prolactin hormone|
|Spinach-Kale||Vitamin A/C regulators enhance breast volume|
|Almonds/Walnuts||Omega-3 fatty acids promotes healthy fats|
Don’t Get Too Excited About Those Myths
Drinking cow’s dairy is often thought to be helpful in increasing production but this is purely myth-based! Its just a common old wives tale!
Campaigners worldwide concur breastfeeding mothers require extra nutrition; however, unlike cows' milk marketed vitamins/minerals aren't potent enough supplements for human female anatomy.[^6] Therefore misleading information doesn't match-up against what science portrays around developing infants and their diets[ix].
Females also need hydration throughout gestational journey namely within recovery time while lactating. Mothers should continuously ensure drinking plenty of water
When Should You Try Alternatives To Boost Lactation?
If after establishing such measures with frequent nursing sessions along with eating balanced nutritious meals leave any disappointment then consider chatting with your medical specialist before self-prescription carries out. Some women experience temporary supply issues due to ailment needing addressing beyond pumping/expanding diet so medical advice might prove worthwhile if unclear[xi]
Here are few points treatment options could be recommended:
- Regulate breast emptying/use pumps efficiently
- Prevent form dehydration
- Manage stress levels
The Bottom Line
There's no scientific evidence that drinking cow’s dairy increases production, neither does any other magical path to infinite lactation. While it doesnt' necessarily hurt to include cows' milk in your diet, all that settles in a mums mind is health for them and their new bundle of joy!
We hope these tips can provide objective counseling around incorporating good nutrient-dense choices into everyday life . Remember everyone's journey is unique so whatever the outcome may be evaluate requirements of mother and child holistically.[^7]
It requires patience finding what works best A little advice-giving goes a long way as encouraging patient and informed parentig needs aiming for optimal growth/development along newborn stages.
So that concludes our discussion on whether or not drinking cow's milk helps increase lactation. Remember: there are plenty of other ways you can promote healthy breastmilk supply if you're struggling, so don't give up just yet!
[x]. American Academy of Pediatrics recommends taking flax seeds/oats for those who desire to promote lactation production.
. Increased hydration aids in the increase of breastmilk; it can also help prevent dehydration, may avoid kidney stones or urinary tract infections resulting from nursing[ix].
[xi]A few medical explanations for low milk supply which might go beyond mere (diet and pumping) manipulation such as conditions like thyroid disease that should be addressed by a trained clinician.). : "The Lactation Network." The Lactation Network: FAQs about Low Milk Supply - Q&A with Lori J. Isenstadt, 14 Apr. 2020,)
((Whether increasing delectable dairy glassfuls improves human female breastfeeding isn’t proven medically speaking; although studies entail some alternative foods do)) ↩