Lactation products can be pricey, but they shouldn't be.
While galactagogues are not something you have to try for successful breastfeeding, some people feel like it helps them with their supply.
Common galactagogues include oatmeal, moringa, fenugreek, brewer’s yeast, marshmallow root, blessed thistle, alfalfa leaves, fennel, and goat’s rue.
Do lactation cookies even work? Well, when eaten in addition to increased pumping/feeding, power pumping, middle of night pump, some people say they see an increase in supply.
One product I do like because it has great lactogenic properties, low sugar and sodium, vegan, 100% natural and effective is Mammas Milk Bar Lactation Blend. It's super versatile, you can put it in anything! It's based in New Zealand, so U.S. folks be aware of shipping.
Most of the ingredients in here are what you’d find in normal chocolate chip cookies: butter, sugar, flour, eggs, etc.
Let’s talk about what makes these lactation cookies — and where to find some of these ingredients!
Oats: Oats contain iron, which can help increase milk supply. Use old-fashioned rolled oats, not instant oatmeal.
Flaxseed: Flaxseed contains both omega-3 fatty acids and phytoestrogens which are thought to boost milk production. Flaxseed can be purchased as whole seeds or pre-ground; you can grind whole seeds yourself in a coffee grinder but I just buy the already ground flaxseed.
Brewer’s yeast: Brewer’s yeast is one of the most widely known galactagogues, containing iron, zinc, complex B vitamins, and magnesium. Brewer’s yeast is not the same as baker’s yeast. Brewer’s yeast can be purchased at some health food stores, but I purchase mine directly from Amazon.
Here's what you can make some time for on your next free weekend. DIY Lactation cookies!
1 cup (226 grams) butter, room temperature
1 cup (213 grams) brown sugar, packed
1/2 cup (99 grams) granulated sugar
2 large eggs, room temperature
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups (180 grams) all purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
3 tablespoons ground flaxseed
1/4 cup brewer’s yeast
2 tablespoons peanut or almond butter (substitute in nut butter or leave out altogether)
1/4 cup Mammas Milk Bar Lactation Blend Vanilla or Chocolate (optional)
3 cups (267 grams) old-fashioned rolled oats
1 1/2 cups (255 grams) chocolate chips
Preheat oven to 350 °F. Line two baking sheets with silicone baking mats or parchment paper.
Using a mixer, beat together the butter, brown sugar, and granulated sugar until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes. Beat in the eggs, one at a time, followed by the vanilla.
Whisk together the flour, salt, baking powder, flaxseed, and brewer’s yeast. Add this to the mixing bowl and beat until just combined.
Add the almond butter (optional) and oatmeal, mixing again until just combined. Stir in the chocolate chips.
Drop 1.5 tablespoons of dough onto the lined cookie sheets. Bake 10-12 minutes, or until the bottom is golden brown. Cookies will puff up a bit in the oven; if you prefer flatter cookies, press down on the top of each cookie with the underside of a spatula. Cool on the baking sheet for 10 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
Store cookies in an air-tight container for up to a week; cookies will keep frozen for up to 3 months.
Recipe Adapted from https://www.bunsenburnerbakery.com/lactation-cookies-oatmeal-chocolate-chip/
Notes & Safety
Brewer's yeast is not the same as baker's yeast! Brewer's yeast can be purchased at some health food stores or directly from Amazon
Lactation cookies are not an FDA regulated food; there is no "serving size" or guideline for how many to eat. Start with 2 or 3 a day and see if it helps your supply!
Anyone can eat these, it's not just for lactating people. Children and partners yes, they will love them as long as they aren't allergic to any of the ingredients.
You can sub whatever you want.
I don't like to use fenugreek because many people have contraindications to it, meaning it's not safe for use. This is for folks with diabetes or insulin issues as well as other things. People with peanut allergies shouldn't use fenugreek either.
For oats, do not use if you have celics's disease or gluten allergy. Brewer's yeast, use with caution or stay away from if you have chronic or recurrent yeast infections.
If you are looking for a supplement, consider something with less contraindications like Moringa.