I realize quite a few of our readers don’t have a need for this post, but it’s one of our most frequented question topics and worth discussing. As a reminder, I have entirely breastfed all three of our boys – but Wesley is by far the most healthy. I’ve successfully pumped milk for one year with them all, and delayed solids until they each were ready (varying times). If that’s something you’d like to give a try, then this post is for you!
In the below video I do a demonstration (this IS work safe) on how to hold and latch your newborn for breastfeeding, tips for success and common issues I see and hear as an involved LLL member. Additionally, I answer quite a few reader submitted questions (holy hot topic, Batman). There is a summary of the discussion items at the end of this post.
One of the things I mention is lactation cookies. No, these are not made with breast milk – rather, they are made with ingredients to help promote an increase in mother’s milk supply. As a long-standing LLL member, for years I’d referenced an oatmeal-based high sugar lactation cookie to dozens of women in desire of increasing their milk supply However, I’m certainly not comfortable recommending that now! Without an easy go-to recipe, I decided to take it upon myself to do a little bit of research on which herbs and foods assist with the increase of milk production in nursing mothers and give making my own recipe a try.
With confidence I can say that these Omega 3 rich cookies are both delicious and nutritious (as far as cookies go). These pack a protein punch without a huge surge of sugar. And their flavor is so amazing even Dad will love them. But it’s you that needs an extra 300-800 calories a day if you’re a nursing mother, so use that as justification to eat cookies at any time of the day while drinking mother’s milk tea and relaxing (as best you can). And don’t forget to nap skin to skin with your baby!
I’m gonna be honest. I taste tested more than a few of these. They’re good. Really good. I plan on making a batch to bring to the mother of every new baby in my life. And maybe a few strangers. Because, these cookies deserve to be eaten. Even Matt ate them… his response was, “We need to cook with anise more often!”
Paleo Lactation Cookie Recipe
Grain-Free, Gluten-Free, Corn-Free, Soy-Free, Sugar-Free, Peanut-Free (contains tree nuts)
- 1/2 C coconut oil, liquified*
- 1/4 C maple syrup
- 4 eggs
- 1 Tbsp vanilla extract
- 2 Tbsp anise seed, ground (we used a coffee grinder on whole seeds)
- 2 C almond flour
- 1/2 C flax meal (we used a coffee grinder on flax seeds)
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 C macadamia nuts, chopped
- 1/2 C walnuts, chopped
- 1/2 C dates, chopped
- 1 C dark chocolate chips or chunks
- Optional: 2 tsp Fenugreek ground or powder from capsules**
- Whisk together syrup and oil
- Add eggs and whisk in one at a time
- Add anise and vanilla (as well as fenugreek if using)
- In separate bowl, combine flour, flax, and baking soda
- Slowly add dry ingredients to wet as you beat or mix to combine
- Fold in nuts, chocolate and dates
- Spoon one tablespoon of batter onto greased or lined cookie sheet
- Bake at 350 degrees for 10 – 12 minutes until top just starts to brown
Makes a whopping 36 cookies – but they freeze well if you don’t need that many
*The original recipe called for flax oil but with concern over oxidation leading to toxicity in the oil, we’ve revised it to liquified coconut oil.
*Please note, Fenugreek is an derived from the same family as peanuts and chick peas – therefore, it’s not technically Paleo. However, if you are having extreme issues with your milk supply I would recommend it above Brewer’s Yeast or Oats, which are not gluten-free. My recommendation would be to try these cookies (you need extra calories while nursing, go ahead and eat them!) while drinking Mother’s Milk and Red Raspberry tea as often as you possibly can (3-4 cups of each per day is what I would drink) and see if that helps before trying Fenugreek.
And as promised, Episode 4 of our video blog series: Breastfeeding Q&A with Stacy. I hope these videos are helpful for new mothers; I’ve tried to address the practical, real questions we get at our monthly meetings and on the breastfeeding boards I am a member of as well as the plethora of comments and e-mails I received when I mentioned working on this post. I wish I would have had these videos to learn what to expect and how to get ahead of typical problems with just a short 15 minute investment before the birth of my first child.
In this video (Part 1) I talk about being comfortable with nursing and how to physically do it with a newborn (discussion of some holds, demonstration – all work safe!).
In this video (Part 2) I answer submitted questions and common concerns I’ve encountered over the years. Here’s are the topics discussed:
- My doctor says my baby isn’t gaining weight and he/she wants me to supplement
- Pumping tips
- How much should baby be drinking while you’re gone
- How to get your milk supply up
- How to manage being a mother that nurses at home but is away during the day
- Ack, my milk is stinky after I freeze it! (likely lipase breakdown occurs in freezing process)
- Ack, my baby had a bottle in the hospital and won’t latch now!
- How to set your breastfed baby up for bottle feeding success
- Toxins in breast milk while losing weight
- The weaning process (starting solids, baby-led weaning)
- How to find support
- What will eating Paleo do to your milk supply
- Things to avoid
- Peppermint (Mentha piperita)
- Parsley (Petroselinum crispum)
- Black Walnut
- stinging nettles (not nettle – that increases milk supply)
- Herb Robert (Geranium robertianum)
- Lemon Balm
- Periwinkle Herb (Vinca minor)
- Sorrel (Rumex acetosa)
- Birth Control
- Foods to increase
- Brewer’s Yeast
- Blessed Thistle
- Salmon and other fatty fish
- Nuts high in Omega 3 (walnuts, macadamia nuts)
- Omega 3 rich pastured eggs
- Flax (seeds, meal and oil)
- Milk Thistle
- Things to avoid
Note to self: don’t plan video blogs at 11pm at night when you’re bleary eyed and can’t even get the names of nursing position holds correct.