Despite being asked a lot, I have written so much about pumping and milk supply on my website, but I have never written about mother's milk tea.
I was seriously concerned about my supply in those first weeks because it was not a typical breastfeeding experience.
You have no idea what to expect when you are a new mom who has never breastfed before. Couple that with a baby in the NICU, and I did not breastfeed well.
After a couple of weeks of pumping with a hospital grade breast pump I did go on to successfully breastfeed.
I continued to do a lot of pumping in those early months since I was planning to return to work full-time. I experimented with power pumping and other tricks to boost milk.
One thing I did not know about or try though was Mother's milk tea.
In 2012 when my first baby was born, lactation teas and other food items for boosting milk supply were less common than now.
What is Mother's milk tea?
Mother's milk tea is a lactation tea that claims to increase breastmilk. I like that it is USDA Organic and has a climate change pledge on its product listing.
Here is some information from Traditional Medicinals Organic Mother's Milk Women's Tea about their product:
- Promotes breast milk production for nursing mothers
- America's #1 lactation tea. Loved by moms for over 40 years.
- Lactation consultant recommended
- 100% USDA Certified Organic ingredients. Non-GMO certified. Kosher
- No stevia. No natural flavors. Caffeine-free
- Medicinal-grade organic herbs from ethical trading partnerships
- Sweet with a distinct licorice taste
- Inspired by a Traditional European Medicine combination passed through generations of women, our time-tested formula uses fennel, anise, coriander, fenugreek, and blessed thistle to help promote lactation
- Case of six boxes, each box containing 16 sealed tea bags (96 total tea bags)
Bitter fennel fruit*, anise fruit*, coriander fruit*, fenugreek seed*, blessed thistle herb*, spearmint leaf*, West Indian lemongrass leaf*, lemon verbena leaf*, marshmallow root* *Indicates OrganicFENUGREEK
How to use mothers milk tea:
I have been asked when to start drinking Mother's milk tea.
For starters, please do not use it while pregnant. Fenugreek is unsuitable for pregnancy, and it says not to use it while pregnant on the box.
You can start using it as soon as your baby is born though. It is safe for the mom and the baby through breast milk.
Simply use 8 ounces of boiled water per tea bag. You can have up to 3-5 cups of tea a day.
I would start with one and work up depending on how much you like tea and if you see any results.
Does mother's milk tea work:
Fennel is the other main ingredient and is also a galactagogue, a substance that increases breast milk.
The other ingredients and herbs in Mother's milk tea are also known to boost lactation.
The mother's milk tea reviews on Amazon and elsewhere do show people having a lot of success with it. I know breastfeeding moms who have used this tea and found it helpful.
Mother's milk tea side effects:
While I have not personally heard of mother's milk tea having any negative side effects, Fenugreek in large quantities can have some side effects.
Fenugreek is safe for mom and baby but there can be side effects, these are not typical:
- urine that smells like maple syrup
As I said above you do not want to take it while pregnant.
Other ways to boost milk supply
Milk supply is mainly about supply and demand. The more you breastfeed and pump the more milk you produce.
To encourage a good supply always feed your baby on demand and do not schedule feedings.
Putting your baby to the breast and having lots of skin-to-skin time will help your supply.
You can gauge that your supply is good by how many wet and dirty diapers your baby has.
Many moms worry about supply unnecessarily. When your baby seems super hungry and restless, it is more likely a growth spurt or cluster feeding than a milk supply issue.
If you are still concerned about your supply, you can try mother's milk tea or other lactation treats such as cookies or brownies.
What I like about tea and treats is that they have little downside and taste good! A way to increase supply without really trying.
You can also try power pumping, a pumping technique to increase supply.
I hope this gives you a helpful overview of how to use mother's milk tea, what it is, and how and why it works.