Ugh, your monthly friend has returned. Things have been tough these past few months with delivering a human, sleepless nights, leaky boobs… can’t a mama catch a break?! Needless to say, I have NOT missed my monthly visitor one bit. For some women, their period will not return until after they have completed breast feeding, although it will return once baby is nursing less (sleeping through the night, beginning to ween, etc.). While the exact time of return is different for every woman, one thing is for sure, the hormones will have an effect on your body AND your breast milk. Here’s how you can keep your breast milk production from tanking when your period returns.
Just before your period starts, your blood calcium levels drop, causing your milk supply to drop. To combat this, you can take a Calcium Magnesium Supplement. Keeping the calcium levels high will keep your milk production high. I found this brand at Whole Foods and was slightly upset when I saw it was half the price at Amazon! It’s super important that you run this by your doc before adding this to your vitamin regimen. And always be sure it is a combination of both magnesium and calcium, as you should never take calcium solo.
Let There Be Milk
Let There Be Milk is an organic herbal solution that comes in the form of drops. I have been using it for about 2 months now and am on my second bottle. I take anywhere from 1-5 syringes full each day. I cannot say enough how this liquid has saved my boobies. Just last week I came down with a bad cold and took a decongestant to help dry things up. Normally, this would also mean drying up your milk supply. I took 5 drops each day that I was taking the medicine and I never saw a drop in milk production. I took just 3 drops per day once my period returned since I had other supplements fighting along side of the Let There Be Milk. (EDIT: I know this product is ALWAYS sold out, I cant say I’m shocked because it works so well. I’ve got some alternatives listed here)
Did you know that the same ingredient that is used to artificially flavor maple syrup can help increase your milk supply? Yeah. You know you are taking enough Fenugreek when you start to smell like a pancake. Fenugreek seed has been a known to help increase milk supply for centuries. The reason why isn’t completely clear- some experts believe it is because the breast is similar to a sweat gland and Fenugreek increases sweat production. I buy this brand online because it’s only $5! Kellymom.com suggests taking no less than 3500 mg per day to see results within 24-72 hours.
The milk makin’ miracle food: oatmeal. I’ve been eating is every morning for 4 months now and have had to get pretty creative so I don’t burn myself out. For a while I added a dash of brown sugar, then I switched to honey, now I add a few raisins. It really does work wonders when it comes to milk production. You can also find a ton of great recipes online for lactation cookies that are almost always oatmeal based. If you’re looking for fun ways to mix up your oatmeal, check out our oatmeal based lactation smoothie and boobie bites.
My period returned when Emmy was just 17 weeks. She had been sleeping for about 12 hours solid for the past month so I assume that dropping the late hour dream feed was the reason for the return. I was caught so off guard! I had read about how much milk can be effected by this but I wasn’t expecting it to affect me so suddenly. I was honestly really worried. I was nowhere near ready for my breastfeeding journey to end! The very first morning after I started, Emmy was fussy and not getting enough milk after her first feeding. I immediately began gathering all my supplies. I did 2 fenugreek 3 times a day, 3 drops of Let There Be Milk and continues drinking my Mothers Milk tea. I went and got the Cal-Mag supplement and started it right away. Emmy still seemed a little fussy for the rest of the day, but by the next morning I was completely full again.