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  • How to improve Breast milk or Breastfeeding?

Breast feeding is the primary choice of women be rural or urban. Doctors have always emphasized over breastfeeding. The maternity leave policy in India has been strengthened from 12 to 26 weeks which enables working mothers to breastfeed.

Still the bigger question is: Why is the market of formulas then flourishing in India?

Why are we heading in the wrong direction? When I ask parents why you introduced top feed to your baby, I get only one liner as an answer, “Iska pait nahi bharta tha” or “Ye roti bahot thi”

These are not the wrong cues but are neither the right ones to establish the fact that the baby’s demand is not being met by breast milk alone.

Why is poor lactation seen in mothers these days?

In the first hour after birth, babies are neurologically wired to find the breast and tend to latch on correctly. Having your baby close to you after birth also promotes a sense of closeness and a strong hormonal response that may help with breastfeeding.

Only 41.6% of babies are breastfed within an hour of being born, despite 79% of women delivering in a healthcare institution, a report released by Unicef

In hospitals by the time the baby is brought close to the breast, it has been 4-5 hours after delivery.

Talk to your doctor beforehand that soon after delivery you will be allowed to cuddle the baby and breastfeed within the first hour of birth Women during pregnancy take high protein diets, they take iron supplements religiously still end up with poor lactation.

How to enhance production of breast milk?

Time to follow Garbhini Paricharya mentioned in Ayurveda. We advise Garbhini Paricharya at our Ayurvedic clinic and we also deal in prenatal yoga and Ayurvedic prenatal classes.

Herbs that can increase lactation should be taken for example Shatavari, Usheer. You should consult a good Ayurvedic doctor near you for the same.

Plenty of fluids – The mother should keep herself hydrated and have plenty of fluids which enhances lactation.

There are spices like ajwain, jeera, black pepper should be used in food which also enhances breast milk production. Jaggery can be added to the food.

Demand and supply mechanism in breastfeeding – This is the most important mechanism to improve breast milk. What happens in the hospitals is the baby is fed formula for the first three days when the breastfeeding is very important. As a result, the production does not happen as breast milk is secreted more with stimulus to the nipples. The mother should keep trying to breast feed even if the milk isn’t secreted much.

We do give lactation counselling to new mothers at our clinic. Lactation counselling is very important for first time mothers. Do not hesitate in walking upto a centre and seeking help.

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