Breastfeeding: Can brewer's yeast increase your milk supply?

I understand that brewers yeast is helpful in increasing the production of breastmilk. Is this true?


Debbi Donovan

Debbi Donovan is a Board Certified Lactation Consultant, as well as a retired La Leche League Leader. For more than a decade, Debbi... Read more

Brewer's yeast, the same yeast that is used in the brewing of beer, is high in protein, iron and rich in B vitamins, along with various minerals and trace elements.

Many years ago it was commonly recommended that nursing mothers who suspected they had a low milk supply try adding it to their daily diet; some found it helped their milk supply and increased their energy level.

The traditional American diet is low in B vitamins. Though most nutrients in human milk are not affected by a mother's diet, B6 and B12 can be present in low concentrations if the mother is chronically deficient.

If you do decide to try brewer's yeast, check with your doctor first. A tablespoon of the powder each day. It can be mixed into tomato juice to help make it more palatable. If your baby becomes fussy from the addition of this supplement (as sometimes happens), you could try incorporating some B-rich foods into your diet instead: beef, pork, tuna, chicken, milk, eggs, whole grains, beans, peanuts, bananas and dark green leafy vegetables.

You may also want to see a lactation consultant -- she may be able to tell whether you do in face have an insufficient milk supply. 

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