24 answers

Does Fenugreek (Herb/pills) Work for Breasfeeding?

I really need to boost my milk production - because my 1 month old is a big eater and I cannot keep up. I read that Fenugreek is one of the world's oldest medicinal herbs. It has a variety of uses, including increasing breastmilk production. Does anyone have experience with this herb it is available in a pill form (ground seeds placed in capsules) at GNC, health food stores. I would really appreciate any responses/advice on this and any other way to boost milk production. I use an electric pump to help also. Thank you very much.

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Featured Answers

Fenugreek works!! I took it and within a few days my boobs were engorged and leaking and I had to pump to keep up. I reccommend it, that and oatmeal!

1 mom found this helpful

Hi Grace!

I have a 10 week old, and my son never latched on so I was having to pump and at the same time deal with not producing much milk to keep up with my big eater. I bought the Fenugreek and it worked well for me. I only took 2 a day. I also bought the Mother's Milk Tea and drank that everyday. I got both of them at a health food store here in Wichita.

Good luck!!!

K.

1 mom found this helpful

hI gRACE,
I did use Fenugreek and I thought it worked well. I soaked the seeds in hot water and drank it like a tea. Another supplement I used was hops-I used this in the pill form because the dried herb as a tea tastes really nasty. But anyway I used both of those and I never had any problems. Hope this helps. Good luck, J.

1 mom found this helpful

More Answers

The health food store has a tea that I think is called Mother's milk and it promotes production. I think it has Fenugreek in it and that way, you would know it's in a safe amount to take. Also, I don't know how often you nurse, but if you don't feel like he's getting enough, move up the nursings to every 1 1/2 or 2 hours and drink plenty of water. This will also increase your milk production and doesn't take long to work. My first little one is a BIG eater and she was hard to nurse at first, but I stuck with it and it was SO worth it. If you are determined to breastfeed (which I was), I wouldn't recommend supplementing b/c it slows down production. Anyways, hope this helps. Be encouraged and stick with it - it's worth it! :)

1 mom found this helpful

Fenugreek works!! I took it and within a few days my boobs were engorged and leaking and I had to pump to keep up. I reccommend it, that and oatmeal!

1 mom found this helpful

Hi. I had great success with that for a while, then my supply went down. I had to get on Reglan which helped, but it made me really tired. There are risks with that too...being that if you just quit taking abruptly, your milk supply will be affected.
You might also look into how your supply is affected by your menstral cycle. Some women experience a drop in supply due to the levels of calcium and magnesium decreasing in their blood. A simply dietary supplement is all it takes to get back on track in that situation.
Good luck!

1 mom found this helpful

Grace, fengreek worked a miracle for me this time around (I didn't need it for my first child, but my new daughter wasn't gaining enough in the beginning). Usually you take it for a few weeks for a boost and then can wean off, but some women need it longer. You can get it locally at Kangaroo Kids, but I found it much more economical to order online at vitacost.com. It might be available at other local stores, but I never checked.

I wish you the best!
K.
Please feel free to email me if you have any other questions -- ____@____.com

1 mom found this helpful

Fenugreek is shown to work to boost breastmilk. But it may not work for everyone. I needed to boost my supply when I was b/f, but I just began drinking even more water (which is recommended), and I had a bowl of oatmeal everyday. I liked the maple brown sugar flavor the most so I stuck with that. Funny thing is that a lot of maple syrup is flavored by the fenugreek herb.

I did this as well as increased the number of times I pumped.

1 mom found this helpful

hI gRACE,
I did use Fenugreek and I thought it worked well. I soaked the seeds in hot water and drank it like a tea. Another supplement I used was hops-I used this in the pill form because the dried herb as a tea tastes really nasty. But anyway I used both of those and I never had any problems. Hope this helps. Good luck, J.

1 mom found this helpful

When I was trying to breastfeed my daughter I unfortunately couldn't make any milk at all. So after seeking the help of a lactation consultant, she suggested that I use fenugreek and blessed thistle at the same time. I tried both, but had no luck. My cousin however swears by fenugreek. She said that she was able to find fenugreek that you actually would hold under your tongue that worked wonders for her. She says that the stonger the herb the better. Hope this helps and good luck!!!

1 mom found this helpful

hi grace,

yes fenugreek really does work. i had to take it when i was breastfeeding my daughter because i got sick and my milk supply when down. i took it for about three or four days and it really came back. you can buy it pill form at the health food store and it is not very expensive. also i have heard that mothers milk tea also work but i have never tried it. hope it works.

N.

1 mom found this helpful

I've been using Fenugreek capsules since I had my baby boy last July. I haven't had a problem with milk supply and my baby was a very big eater the first couple months! Since I always took the pills, I can't say if it would be different if I didn't take them. My sister, who worked as a manager in the nutrition section of Whole Foods Market said that eating a lot of greens (lettus, spinach, etc.) helps boost milk production also.

1 mom found this helpful

My lactation consultant from La Leche League suggested this when I was having milk production issues with my first son, and yes, it did work. It makes your underarms smell like maple syrup, which was kindof funny, but I would suggest purchasing it at whole foods and I think I remember taking SEVERAL pills a day to increase it. Also, if it doesn't work enough, there is a baby - safe medication called reglan, that is sometimes used for nasea, but it increases your milk supply greatly. Your dr can tell you more about that one. Also, make sure you are drinking one FULL glass of water every hour, that you are not overdoing yourself and getting enough rest, and that you let the baby nurse for at least 10 minutes on each side, and you don't pull him off early.
Blessings!
A. Parsons, LSP, CD Doula

1 mom found this helpful

I have had friends who have used Fenugreek very successfully with big eaters. I would check out the breastfeeding boards on this website for more detailed help: www.babywhisperer.com/smf. They will be really helpful!

1 mom found this helpful

Hi Grace!

I have a 10 week old, and my son never latched on so I was having to pump and at the same time deal with not producing much milk to keep up with my big eater. I bought the Fenugreek and it worked well for me. I only took 2 a day. I also bought the Mother's Milk Tea and drank that everyday. I got both of them at a health food store here in Wichita.

Good luck!!!

K.

1 mom found this helpful

Yes Fenugreek does work. But you also have to make sure that you are getting enough fluids as well. I didn't have to start taking Fenugreek until I returned to work and ended up getting a cold and taking a cold medicine. But I have been taking Fenugreek now for about 5 weeks and have been pumping enough and producing enough for my 3.5 month old daughter. The dosage is 3 pills 3 times a day and when you smell like maple syrup you are taking enough, it normally takes about 3-4 days to kick in. And if that doesn't work talk to the lactation nurses. They also had me get a prescription from my Primary care physcian for Reglan 10mg 3 times a day for 30 days. Only you ween yourself off of it slowly. Good luck.

1 mom found this helpful

Grace,

Contact the hospital you delivered at and see if they have a lactation consultant. Most hospitals do. If they dont, contact another hospital in your area. I have heard several things such as Fenugreek, can of beer, and even Pepcid (or Reglan, cant remember which one it is lol) all have good outcomes when trying to increase milk production. But, dont get discouraged. As the lactation consultant will tell you, there are several stages in breastfeeding. When the infant needs more, he/she will begin to nurse more frequently or longer to increase your supply. I cannot recall the ages, but I think you are around the second one right now, usually 2 weeks, 5-6 weeks... Good Luck.. dont give up if you want to breastfeed. You both will get alot out of it.

1 mom found this helpful

Yes Fenugreek does work and you can get it at GNC. It is really cheap. The only thing is that it stinks and my friend told me it made her smell like maple syrup (???) Call the Lactation consultants at the hospitals (I used the ones at Missouri Baptist) They are really helpful. I just went through the same situation a few months ago and was determined not to quit. I started pumping and I was not making enough for him (or so I thought) so I would alternate formula with breastmilk, but I never gave up. Then at about 9 weeks old I just went back to nursing full time and just occasional bottle of formula and now at over 5 months he just gets breastmilk and I rarely pump. I was told to drink tons of water and I was also told that to drink a beer once a day. I don't like beer but it worked for my friend. Babies at that age just eat a lot when breastfeeding and your body is just trying to figure out how much milk to ake so it is normal for them to eat every hour and a 1/2. I know it is hard with another child but if you really want to breastfeed, stick it out, it will get easier. Good luck!

1 mom found this helpful

I haven't heard of Fenugreek but I was having problems keeping up with my daughter who is now 7 mo old. My OB prescribed me REGLIN (not sure about the spelling) it can be used to increase milk production. Within three days of taking it I was easily producing an extra ounce at each feeding. I used a pump also. Caution yourself with it though. You won't pump as much as your baby can get himself. Your more relaxed when feeding your baby verses a pump. The only side effect I had with Reglin was it made me tired. It will eventually subside though. Ask your doctor and good luck.

SAHM of three, two boys 11 and 7 and a girl 7 months.

1 mom found this helpful

I don't know about that herb, but I do know that in the first month my daughter was born, I breastfed her about every hour to 1 1/2. It really helped me to read a book called "The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding" by the La Leche League. The more you feed your baby, the more milk you produce, it's supply and demand, so baby is just adjusting his milk supply. I totally encourage you to keep going with the breastfeeding, even though it may feel like it is constant at times. Also would encourage you to look up your local chapter of La Leche League on their website. They are quite helpful!

1 mom found this helpful

Thats the name of it.. I soo forgot.. I started to use it.. but my son had a hard time latching on.. so it did not work for us... and I was getting no sleep so even pumping did not work.. so drat it anyway...

But they say you take so many for so long.. when you smell like syrup youself you are taking the right amount!!!

Good luck!!!

1 mom found this helpful

I havent had to do Fenugreek but I do eat oatmeal or an oatmeal bar every day and drink at least 8 of my hospital mugs of water when I need to boost my supply! I also drink an occasional beer (it's the hopps like with oatmeal that helps) per rec's from my LC...but the water is the big one for me!

Tiff
Mom of 23 mo old and 5 mo old boys!

1 mom found this helpful

Hi Grace,

I was in the exact same situation 4 months ago with my son. He was just 7 lbs at birth and now weighs 19 lbs on just breastmilk.....a big eater. :)

I was getting nervous and thought about trying herbs/pills, but just kept letting him feed whenever he wanted and then pumping immediately after the feed (several times a day). When you pump this soon after the feeding you won't hardly get a drop, but your body will be tricked into making more. It's a lot of work but you won't have to do it much longer. Once I got to about 5-6 weeks we were doing great. Good luck and let me know if you have anymore questions.

1 mom found this helpful

you should ask your OBGYN about those pills. I know back in the day, we drank a can of beer inbetween feedings. the yeast makes you produce more milk

yes it will i have a flamy member is tackin ot and it helps her

It didn't do much for me (took it two days straight a couple of times), but came highly recommended. I liked that it didn't hurt to try! (I took it tablet form, and perhaps should have taken it for a three or more days straight - don't like pills and often forget to take them)

Jo

Keep up the good work. When my son was born he was born 2 months early and I could not breastfeed so I pumped. I had such a low milk supply that the doctor prescribed Reglan and Fenugreek. They both worked very well at boosting my milk production. I took 9 pills a day. Actually 11. 3Fenugreek capsules 3 times a day and 2 reglan. Ask your doc about the reglan.

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