Chapter: Herbs

AKA: Greek hayseed, Trigonella foenum-graecum.

Effects: A good source of choline and beta-carotene, both of which are useful in the treatment of Alzheimer's disease. It has also been used in the treatment of gout, neuralgia, respiratory ailments, sciatica, skin irritations, sores, swollen glands, and tumors.

Dosage: Two teaspoons of seeds per cup of water for up to two to three cups a day.


Effects: An antioxidant.

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Questions and Answers

Fenugreek?, I am going to start taking fenugreek to increase my supply of milk, but my husband also bought the tea. Should I do both? Or can u overdo it? How many of the capsules should I take? Three capsules three times a day?

First off, I LOVE fenugreek. It is has a gentle laxative quality which is very good right after birth.

If you have diabetes, it can lower your blood sugar, and if you take blood thinners you shouldn't use fenugreek...

Some places say not to take more than 6000 mg per day. The tea usually has things like nettles to help with your iron etc.

If it were ME, I would have no problem doing both...but ymmv

when does the fenugreek start working for increasing the breastmilk?, I take 2 tablet of fenugreek 3 times daily, for this past 2 days, my milk supply still the same, all I got just the heartburn.
I drink a lot too.

What many forget is that unless you are making your body think you need to produce more, you can take as much fenugreek as you want and not make more milk. I took 3 capsules 3x day for two weeks then 3-5 cups of Mother's Milk Tea for two weeks then oatmeal twice a day for two weeks as well as increased water/gatorade. I alternated so that my body wouldn't get hung up on one method of increasing milk.

(I learned all the following from another mom who is now a La Leche League Leader, she also has BF her two children)The key is to make your body think you need more. Let the baby nurse more often and for longer periods. If DC nurses every 4 hours for 10 minutes each side/ 20 minutes total, then extend the time to 15-20 minutes each side every 2.5 to 3 hours. OR after each feeding at normal length/intervals pump for about 15 minutes each side (I prefer a double electric - faster and better suction and no forarm cramps). When your baby feeds they usually don't empty the breast of all the milk. There is a 80/20 balance that is usually maintained so that milk production is the same - baby drinks 80%, 20% stays in the breast. If you continue to nurse or pump after nursing you are changing the 80/20 and telling your body make more milk. If you don't let the baby finish and the nursing session is shorter than normal the 80/20 ratio becomes more like 60/40 or 70/30.

It will take a few days for your body to get the picture to make more when you do this, but keep at it. If you are trying to produce more milk to pump and save, make sure you feed/pump at regular intervals consistently throughout the day. If it is b/c you feel your baby isn't getting enough b/c you don't get engorged anymore or b/c you don't feel letdown as often - that is normal after the first few month PP. Milk supply goes from hormone driven production to on demand production. Just let your baby nurse more often and longer!

Any advice on using fenugreek or any other ways to increase my milk supply?, Any advice on using fenugreek to increase my milk supply?
Is it safe for me and my baby? What are the side effects? Can anyone tell me there experiences with it? Also, where can you find them besides online? Also, does anyone have any other advice on how to increase my milk supply? I pump for my baby, but it is not enough to feed him. I have tried extra pumping, eating oatmeal, and drinking lots of water, but my milk supply is always low. Sometimes I can make just enough, but after a while it will drop again. Right now it is so bad that I am only making half of what he eats. I don't want to stop breastfeeding and I don;t want him to have any formula, but I am getting really frustrated with my supply. Please tell me about fenugreek or other ways to increase my milk supply!

I used fenugreek. You need to take a lot of it to make a difference. Three capsules/ three times a day. Taking Blessed Thistle with it also helps. When your sweat and urine begin to smell of maple syrup - you know you are taking enough. If you begin to have loose stools or stomach cramps, ease up on it. I never had any negative side effects. You can get it from a local healthfood store, even walmart.

domperidone is a prescription drug that helps increase milk supply as well.

Pumping is not an indicator of how much milk you have. The baby is much more efficient at getting milk out and supporting the supply. Moms who choose, can pump milk and never put the baby to the breast, but it is an uphill battle as the pump doesn't stimulate the supply the same way and you can lose the supply.

The first rule is to feed the baby. Even if you have to give some formula its okay. Any amount of breastmilk is going to be beneficial for the baby!

How frequent do you have to pump breastmilk after taking fenugreek tablet?, Do you still need to pump every 2/3 hours despite taking fenugreek supplement or you can afford to skip some hours and still get sufficient milk supply? How many hours can you be without pumping and still have supply? I started taking fenugreek supplement since yesterday and have been pumping for every 3 hours during the day till late nite and I was too tired to pump at 3am and 6am, will that affect my supply? Those experienced pls advice. Thanks

nursing and pumping are key (in that order). fenugreek works in varying levels for women, sometimes needing to take more or adding different herbal supplements for it to all work.

most women see a difference with fenugreek after a few days, if it was only yesterday, keep your same nursing/pumping schedule for at least a week. remember that your baby is much more efficient at getting the milk out than your pump, even if you have a rented hospital grade pump!

the more often the breasts are stimulated and emptied, the more often and quickly they will "refill." that is the supply/demand process of breastfeeding.

on increasing milk supply: http://www.kellymom.com/bf/supply/low-su...

How much Fenugreek can you take a day while breastfeeding?, What is a safe amount of Fenugreek that I can take a day? I am breastfeeding and want to increase my milk supply.

Dosages of fewer than 6 capsules/day (approx 3500 mg/day) produce no effect in many women. One way to determine if you're taking the correct dosage is to slowly increase the amount of fenugreek until your sweat and urine begin to smell like maple syrup.

What mg capsules are you taking? You should begin by taking two capsules three times a day, and can gradually increase the dosage up to four capsules three times a day if needed.

More dosage info here: http://www.kellymom.com/herbal/milksuppl...

Possibly even more important is to determine the cause of your supposed low supply. What makes you believe you need to increase your production? Is your baby making enough wet/dirty diapers? Meeting milestones? Seeming content between feedings?

More information on determining whether or not your supply is actually low: http://www.kellymom.com/bf/supply/low-su...

Good luck and congrats on making the wonderful decision to breastfeed your baby! :)

How safe it is to take Fenugreek to increase your milk supply if you already have high blood pressure? ?, I'm curious about this because I already have high blood pressure and am currently taking medication for this and am thinking about taking Fenugreek tablets to help increase my breastmilk supply. I've read that high blood pressure is a common side affect of Fenugreek.

I took it and didn't have any side effects at all. Except for my sweat smelling like maple syrup. The best thing to increase your milk supply is to stay super hydrated.

What is the dosage of the fenugreek tea for increasing breast milk?, I was reading about fenugreek pills and positive experiences from other mothers, but unfortunately I come from a country that doesn’t have such pill production. I was able to find fenugreek seeds, and for a week and a half I’m making a tea from it, but I still don’t see the results. Can please anyone tell me how much should I drink from the tea and what is the best method for preparing it? Thank you.

You should definitely talk to a certified lactation consultant, they can tell you the right dosage and everything you need to know :]

How many tired ,over worked women know about fenugreek and why should men care about women and fenugreek?, How many tired ,over worked ,stressed out , fatigued , women know about fenugreek and why should men care about women and fenugreek ?

Is this true?
I'm tired all the time(been recovering from flu and infections) and if something will help make my hubby happy too, I'd take it, if it actually worked. Am feeling fairly sceptical though :/

Have you taken fenugreek to increase your milk supply? What dosage did you take and did it work?, I just started taking 3 capsules at a time 3 times a day. I have noticed a slight increase in milk supply. Should I take more fenugreek?

That's the dosage I took and it took about a week to notice a big difference.

How long after taking fenugreek will i start lactating?, My husband and I are adopting a child. I have never lactated before. Now, this is the goal since the baby is going to be born in about two weeks. If I take fenugreek, how long will it take before I start lactating. Apparently I'm supposed to take three a day. Please help.

I've been taking 3 pills 3 times a day for 2 weeks now and my milk supply has really gotten better