10 ways to increase and improve your breast milk supply

A woman breastfeeding her baby

There are lots of reasons why you might have a low milk supply. But fear not! Here are 10 ways to improve your flow and keep that hungry baby happy.

Be breast exclusive if possible while trying to increase milk flow

It can be hard, but try not to feed your bubba anything but breast milk. Formula is useful and full of good things too, but the more you breastfeed your baby, the more milk you’ll produce.

Try not to skip feeds

Leaving long gaps between feeds can reduce your supply. If you’re heading back to work, try expressing milk regularly using an electric hands free breast pump to keep your flow at its peak.

Be led by your baby

Let your baby feed when they want, for as long as they want. Once you find a balance, your body will begin to produce enough to satisfy the demand. So, if they start sucking their fingers or making for your boob? Let them at it!

Feel it out

There’s nothing better than some skin-to-skin time with your baby. It’s comforting, helps you bond and is proven to release hormones that increase your supply.

Eat well

‘Lactogenic’ foods are believed to increase your milk load. Try eating porridge or muesli in the morning, with a sprinkle of nuts and seeds. Oats, sunflower seeds and almonds are all thought to improve your flow, as are fruits and veggies like potatoes, broccoli, asparagus and lettuce, and apricots, peaches and cherries.

Keep yourself hydrated

Make sure you’re drinking plenty of water, as dehydration can seriously affect your milk supply. At least six to eight glasses a day are recommended. See if you can make it a habit, by having a drink yourself each time you feed your baby.

Feed from both of your boobs

If your baby stops feeding from one breast, offer the other. This will keep your flow coming through on both sides and increase your overall supply.

Express your leftover breast milk

Baby done feeding when you still have milk to spare? To keep your supply coming (and keep mastitis at bay), express the remainder using a breast pump.

Check your latch

Not sure your baby is latching properly? If they’re not getting enough milk, your supply will naturally start to dwindle. Talk to your midwife or doctor if you think this might be an issue. Once your baby is feeding well, your supply will improve, too.

Give yourself a massage

A lactation massager is a top tool in any new mum’s armoury. When smoothed across your boob, the gentle vibrations can stimulate milk flow, work out any clogged or painful ducts and tackle under-supply.

Struggling to stay on top of everything AND keep a baby alive? Here are our tips on how to ask for help and share the load.