As the co-founder and Spokesperson for MilkyMomma I get a lot of inquiries about my experience with the supplement in addition to those regarding diet, nursing, pumping, pregnancy and postpartum—how I lose the baby weight so quick. And it is with the heartfelt desire to help as many women as possible feel confident and hopeful in their postpartum and breastfeeding endeavors that I am answering all those questions in this blog post today. Whether you are a first-time expecting momma or a momma several times over seeking to remedy past mistakes surrounding pumping and breastfeeding, I hope you find the information in this post comforting and helpful. I have heard many of your stories and wish to see all of you have success with the tips to follow!
Now for the questions along with my general responses:
1. How soon did you start taking MilkyMomma?
While you may have noticed the bottle says “not for use in pregnancy” as we erred on the
side of caution, it is advised to consult your physician if you are considering it, namely if
you have had any issues with particular foods or herbal supplements in previous
pregnancies. That said, MilkyMomma is all natural and incredibly nutritional. I know
people who have consulted their physician with the ingredients and have been given the
thumbs up. I also began taking it two weeks prior to delivery (in all three pregnancies)
without any issues. It is a wonderful, nutritional supplement packed with nutrients, amino
acids, and vitamins and a wonderful addition to the diets of any individual, nursing or not!
2. How many capsules do you take a day?
In all three pregnancies I have started taking the breastfeeding supplement two weeks before my due date with 4 capsules a day and then once the baby arrives I double it to 8/day (4 with breakfast and 4 with dinner).
3. My doctor told me not to pump right away, how soon should I begin?
No offense to your doctor, but that was bad advice and here's why. When your milk
comes in after the first few days you will never get another chance to maximize that
potential again. Why is that? For most women, milk will be the heaviest in those first
couple days as the breasts are engorged and the body is adjusting to what is—yet to be
determined—required of it. And when it comes to milk production, it is ALL about
supply and demand. Think of your body as a factory or ‘dairy farm’ and imagine that you
are setting the switch to produce exactly what you want. You may only have one baby to
feed, but if you're demanding your body to produce for three or four (in the work you
put in with time, diet, and a good pumping routine) as your body receives and processes
the message, it then supplies your demands. Are you co-sleeping in the first few weeks or
once you notice your milk supply has suffered? Are you drinking enough fluids (milk,
juices, water)? Are you eating healthy foods and foods known to boost milk? If your baby
sleeps a lot, are you waking him/her up to feed, otherwise pumping while they sleep? The
best way to get a strong supply and stash off the bat is to get a strong and semi-regular
routine going…right off the bat.
4. Are you nursing in addition to pumping?
Absolutely! I am also co-sleeping in the first month to help maximize my supply while it
is the strongest. And while it may seem counter intuitive advice, I always tell new
breastfeeding mamas to pump before they nurse their little one, not after and here's why.
Your baby has a stronger suck than even the strongest pump, so it’s best to take
advantage of the pump when you’re full in order to get that nice stash for the freezer
going. Then come close but don't actually empty the breasts on the pump and nurse right
away. Since the let down and flow is already happening, the baby gets on and keeps it
going. And if you’re like me with a quick let down and fast flow, they're not getting
drowned out that way. Nursing sessions (after 15-20 min. on the pump) become much
more peaceful and longer lasting, with less spit up. That said, if you are not in the
position above because your baby is older and you’ve only recently had issues with your
milk supply, then do nurse your baby first and sit on the pump as long as you possibly
can after—and as frequently throughout the day as possible, supplementing with formula
or baby foods (if old enough) if need be. Remembering here that it's all about supply and
demand. The more persistent and consistent you are with nursing and pumping, the more
you will inevitably produce. And no matter your situation, try to stay optimistic!
Even when it seemed hopeless, I have seen some women go two whole weeks drinking
liquids, nursing frequently (even if it’s just to pacify), and pumping nonstop before they
finally got their supply up. If they had given up any sooner, they would've never
experienced the comeback. You see, even if it takes a little longer, the body will
eventually receive the message that you persistently communicate, the only question is
how much investment with time/pumping/fluids/and a healthy diet are you willing to
input? And if you must supplement, don't guilt yourself over it! Formula-fed and
breastfed babies all grow up the same. As big of a supporter as I am for breastfed babies,
I am an even bigger supporter of mommies who aren't stressed! If breastfeeding truly
becomes too much to handle, let yourself off the hook! Stress inhibits milk production
and will be counterproductive to any other efforts made to increase milk supply.
5. How much did you pump in the first few days when your milk came in?
For starters, I will reiterate that in all three pregnancies I have had the advantage in taking
our MilkyMomma supplement prior to delivery. This may very well have had a positive
effect on my body pre-determining a better milk production, alongside my additional
efforts with pumping. Nonetheless, I always say “please don't compare yourself to me”
as no two women will produce exactly the same. I'll never really know what I would've
produced without taking MilkyMomma, which is why I love the positive testimonials of
women who have had major success with it, knowing the difference.
With Hannah, my first who is now 3 and a half yrs. old, I rented a hospital grade pump
and committed to pumping twice a day (morning and night). I was getting a total of 18-24
ounces a day and pumped for 6 weeks. By the end of that time I had a deep freezer stash
of almost 750 ounces (which all ended up being donated).With Adelynn, I only used my
handheld pump in the middle of the night when I'd be full so I don't like to compare her
here. With Sophia, our third baby girl, I received a free (through my insurance) hospital
grade pump called the Hygeia. It's powerful! And a powerful pump is as crucial to milk
production as anything else. Sophia is now 3 weeks old. From the get go, I decided I
wanted to produce twice what I had with Hannah which would mean adding two pump sessions.
Rather than twice a day, I had committed to pumping four times a day and I have
averaged 55-60 ounces per day in addition to nursing on demand. HOLY COW, I know!
And now that I have almost 1,000 ounces in my deep freezer (in half the time I did it with
Hannah) I am planning to limit pumping to twice a day, eventually once a day and then I
will stop pumping all together. I also want to include that it is important to pump
relatively around the same times each day so as to get your body into the routine of being
boobie-full for every session.
6. How do you lose the baby weight so fast?
The first part of this answer has to do with my pregnancies. I gained 50lbs with the first
and 40lbs with the second and third girls. That's a lot right? Well, I am of the belief that
even though they say 25-30 lbs, if you’re eating healthy and staying active, the body just
gains what it's supposed to and that will be different for everyone. I was active for
starters. I did my best to eat healthy (most of the time) and I kept up with my stretching
and yoga on the daily, all of which not only helped me in labor but in bouncing back with
quick recoveries and muscle toning. The second part to this answer bounces off the last question.
Did you know that with every ounce of milk produced, you burn 20 calories!? It's true!
Which is why I've always said breastfeeding is the BEST diet ever. But the catch is if
you're doing it right and you get that strong start, the weight literally melts off. Most
babies are consuming roughly 32 ounces a day. This means that with my daily natural
sedentary burn of 1400 (I only know that from wearing an activity band) in addition to
the near 1200 daily calories I am doing on the pump with another 640 from nursing and
whatever extra I burn in my workout videos 3xs a week, I'm burning at least 3,500 (if not
more) calories in a single day...talk about a ‘dairy-farm’ burn-factory!
Now as long as I eat lower caloric yet protein and fiber-rich, healthy foods I can have
proportions that are much larger and filling. I don't calorie count but I eat to satisfaction
and frequent small meals at least five times a day. Of course I splurge with ice cream,
chips, pizza, and other less-than-healthy foods a couple times a week (everyone's gotta
live a little), but for the most part I choose healthier snacks like pumpkin seeds and
almonds. I don't eat peanut butter, almond butter instead. I limit my pasta and rice intake.
If I eat bread, it's usually sourdough which is low glycemic/no preservatives or artificial anything.
And alongside a healthy diet while taking my supplements and the strength-toning
videos several times a week, I am also drinking LOTS of water! I cannot emphasize the
importance of drinking enough fluids, especially when trying to keep up your milk
supply. I drink a bottle of water every time I pump and all throughout the day when I
nurse on demand. All that said, I also know (because many women have told me) that
they couldn't lose their baby weight until they had stopped nursing, which goes to show
we are all built so differently!
7. Is it possible to overdose on MilkyMomma?
No, it’s not—which means you can start with four to eight caps a day, see what you
produce after a week or so and continue to increase the capsules by two or three if
needed. The only potential side effects reported by some have been an increase in gas
and/or bowel movements.
8. What additional foods have a milk-boosting effect?
Oatmeal is one of the best and easiest prepared foods a nursing mother can add to her
routine every morning. Oats are an excellent galactagogue (milk enhancer) with a decent
amount of protein. Protein is as essential as enough liquids to milk production. I typically
do a large bowl (cup and a half) of oats every morning, which brings in 18 grams of
protein. I also drink two plant-based protein shakes a day (Orgain Organics from Costco).
These shakes are chocolaty and delicious with 21 grams of protein per 150 calories. An
excellent quick fix before and after a workout or meal replacement if you add milk and a
banana, even spinach. My two-year- old LOVES them too. She thinks it's ice cream. In
addition to oatmeal and shakes I also try to include as many other milk-enhancing foods
and occasional teas (Mother's Milk). Some of the best foods to include in your diet are:
- Spinach And Beet Leaves
- Fennel Seeds
- Fenugreek Seeds
- Bottle Gourd
- Basil Leaves
- Chick pea
- Oils and healthy fats
- Brown rice
- Sweet potatoes
- Dill and drumstick leaves
To review—if you’re reading this and you are currently expecting, you will have the greatest
advantage by taking these tips and utilizing them as soon as your baby arrives and your milk
comes in. If you’re reading this and already at your ends wit with frustration surrounding your
milk drying up, all I can ask of you is to hold on to the faith and optimism needed to motivate
you to keep going. Commit to drinking more, pumping more, nursing more, eating healthier,
getting as much rest as possible (when baby naps, you nap) and incorporating as many milk-
enhancing foods (as listed above) as possible in addition to taking your MilkyMomma—as much as you need to see a difference.
YOU GOT THIS MOMMA!!!