Cannot increase supply

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-17-2013
Cannot increase supply
Sun, 03-17-2013 - 6:39am

No matter how much fenugreek & blessed thistle I take, water I drink or times a day I pump, I ALWAYS get 20 oz/day. Never more, sometimes an ounce or two less. I have no idea what to do to increase my supply and why nothing I've done has been helping. Any input would be greatly appreciated. 

iVillage Member
Registered: 09-21-2011
Mon, 03-18-2013 - 12:46pm

How old is your baby (how long have you been bf'ing/EPing)?  This will make a difference in how easy/hard it is for you to increase your production.

How long have you been taking the herbs?   I'm sure it would be helpful to people to know these things to give you more input.  For some women the herbs can take 1-3 weeks to really build up in their system enough to help.  How much fenugreek and blessed thistle are you taking?  The amount you need to take is actually pretty high and many supplements don't have enough for it to be really effective.  When I was nursing/pumping, I ended up buying straight fenugreek seeds and eating them a teaspoon at a time, a couple of time a day to get the amount I needed to see my supply increase.

What is your pumping schedule like?  How many times per day and for how long each time?  Have you tried power pumping (10 minutes on, 10 off, 10 on, 10 off--for like an hour)?  I know many women post that this is most helpful to them.

Are you eating enough?  Milk production takes a LOT of calories.  You need good protein and fats to make milk and many new moms are so busy and tired that they don't take good care of themselves and are not eating well . 

What about other stress and your health generally?  I know that for me, when a couple of really tough things happened and when I got sick, my milk supply took a hit and really took a while to come back up afterward.

Please let us know a little more about your situation so we can try to help!!  You are doing great.  I know it is frustrating not to produce the amount you need, but ever little bit is a gift to your baby. 

iVillage Member
Registered: 04-10-2013
Wed, 04-10-2013 - 4:06pm

i have a 2mo old and he has never latched right, so now i pump. but i cant get an 1oz every day. i am now doing mothers milk tea, i eat and have started to drink more water. my baby is on formula but i still give him what little i have. i had an electronic pump from wic and they took it back now i hand pump. but i am not ready to give up lol. hang in there.