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10 surprising foods that boost your milk supply, mama

If you're not sure what foods can help give your milk supply a boost, look no further. Here are 10 galactagogues, also known as foods that enhance milk production, plus a smoothie recipe you'll want to try—


1. Oats

Oats are full of saponins which impact the milk-making hormones produced in the pituitary gland. Enjoy a bowl for breakfast and top with crushed walnuts and dried apricots for added deliciousness.

2. Alfalfa

Alfalfa leaf is an herb that promotes optimal pituitary function and so can help increase milk production. You can sprinkle alfalfa seeds on your salad for easy consumption. It's also available in supplement form.

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3. Garlic

It's been said that babies enjoy the taste of garlic in breastmilk and so they nurse more when mom eats garlic. By nursing more, milk production is also increased. So go ahead and add just a little more garlic to a favorite dish, no matter what the recipe says.

4. Dandelion

Its leaves and roots are used in Chinese and Native American cultures for postpartum recovery and to boost milk supply. The leaves and root can be sautéed or eaten raw too. Also, if you enjoy teas, dandelion tea offers an easy way to consume it.

5. Fennel

Fennel can be consumed in seed form or as a sautéed vegetable. You can mix it into brown rice or pasta for an easy meal. The phytoestrogens in fennel are believed to promote breast tissue health and lactation, and are the likely the reason why it enhances milk production.

5. Asparagus

Rich in fiber, folic acid vitamin A, C and K, asparagus is a great vegetable for nursing moms, and also great for boosting supply due to the phytoestrogens and tryptophan in it. Tryptophan is an important amino acid which may stimulate prolactin, which is the milk-making hormone in the breastmilk equation.

6. Brown Rice

Like oatmeal, brown rice is another whole grain that is worth incorporating when it comes to lactation. Brown rice is a complex carbohydrate, which gives mom the energy needed for breastfeeding.

Brown rice has also been associated with increasing serotonin levels in the brain. Serotonin helps to regulate mood, appetite and sleep. And because we know that sleep, even when not long in duration for a new mom, contributes to increased prolactin levels.

7. Papaya

Papayas have been commonly used in Asia as a galactagogue. Traditionally, it is made into a soup using green (not ripe) papayas. It is thought that the enzymes and phytochemicals in papaya may enhance breast tissue as well as improve lactation.

Papaya has also been used as a natural sedative. The sedating quality may help you relax, and at the same time help with the milk flow process. So in short, a winner to add to your day!

8. Hummus

Legumes such as chickpeas, lentils, and lima beans are often looked to as lactogenic foods. Hummus, which is made from chickpeas, tahini, garlic, lemon juice, and olive oil, is a perfect and delicious snack for breastfeeding moms.

It is a complete protein, and the combination of chickpeas and garlic (another galactagogue) makes this food a rich and yummy snack and great choice for nursing moms.

9. Apricots

Apricots (especially dried apricots) contain phytoestrogens which help to balance the hormones involved in lactation. Apricots are high in fiber, Vitamin A, C, potassium and calcium.

Calcium-rich dried fruits like figs, apricots, and dates are thought to help with milk production. Apricots, like some other lactogenic foods on this list, also contain tryptophan, which naturally boost prolactin levels.

10. Barley

Barley is also another good lactogenic food. You can make barley water at home to improve milk supply and to keep you hydrated. Simply boil barley in water, then pass through a sieve.

Drink the cooking water warm or at room temperature throughout the day. You can add some fennel for added taste and to boost the drink's lactogenic properties.

And last but not least, a nutritious and delicious breastmilk-boosting smoothie to mix up at home!

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I felt lost as a new mother, but babywearing helped me find myself again

I wish someone had told me before how special wearing your baby can be, even when you have no idea how to do it.

My first baby and I were alone in our Brooklyn apartment during a particularly cold spring with yet another day of no plans. My husband was back at work after a mere three weeks of parental leave (what a joke!) and all my friends were busy with their childless lives—which kept them too busy to stop by or check in (making me, at times, feel jealous).

It was another day in which I would wait for baby to fall asleep for nap number one so I could shower and get ready to attempt to get out of the house together to do something, anything really, so I wouldn't feel the walls of the apartment close in on me by the time the second nap rolled around. I would pack all the diapers and toys and pacifiers and pump and bottles into a ginormous stroller that was already too heavy to push without a baby in it .

Then I would spend so much time figuring out where we could go with said stroller, because I wanted to avoid places with steps or narrow doors (I couldn't lift the stroller by myself and I was too embarrassed to ask strangers for help—also hi, New Yorkers, please help new moms when you see them huffing and puffing up the subway stairs, okay?). Then I would obsess about the weather, was it too cold to bring the baby out? And by the time I thought I had our adventure planned, the baby would wake up, I would still be in my PJs and it was time to pump yet again.

Slowly, but surely, and mostly thanks to sleep deprivation and isolation, I began to detest this whole new mom life. I've always been a social butterfly. I moved to New York because I craved that non-stop energy the city has and in the years before having my baby I amassed new friends I made through my daily adventures. I would never stop. I would walk everywhere just to take in the scenery and was always on the move.

Now I had this ball and chain attached to me, I thought, that didn't even allow me to make it out of the door to walk the dog. This sucks, I would think regularly, followed by maybe I'm not meant to be a mom after all.


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14 outdoor toys your kids will want to play with beyond summer

They transition seamlessly for indoor play.

With Labor day weekend in the rearview and back-to-school in full swing, most parents are fresh out of boxes to check on their "Fun Concierge" hit list. It's also the point of diminishing returns on investing in summer-only toys. So with that in mind, we've rounded up some of our favorite toys that are not only built to last but will easily make the transition from outdoor to indoor play. Even better, they're Montessori-friendly and largely open-ended so your kids can get a ton of use out of them.

From sunny backyard afternoons to rainy mornings stuck inside, these toys are sure to keep little ones engaged and entertained.

Meadow ring toss game

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Besides offering a fantastic opportunity to hone focus, coordination, determination and taking turns, lawn games are just plain fun. Set them up close together for the littles and spread them out when Mom and Dad get in on the action. With their low profile and rope rings, they're great for indoors as well.

$30

Balance board

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Balance boards are a fabulous way to get the wiggles out. This one comes with a rope attachment, making it suitable for even the youngest wigglers. From practicing their balance and building core strength to working on skills that translate to skateboarding and snowboarding, it's a year-round physical activity that's easy to bring inside and use between Zoom classes, too!

$75

Detective set

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This set has everything your little detective needs to solve whatever mystery they might encounter: an eye glasses, walkie-talkie, camera, a red lens, a periscope and a bag. Neighborhood watch? Watch out.

$40

Wooden doll stroller

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Take their charges on a stroll around the block with this classic doll stroller. With the same versatility they're used to in their own ride, this heirloom quality carriage allows their doll or stuffy to face them or face the world.

$120

Sand play set

Plan Toys sand set

Whether you're hitting the beach or the backyard sandbox, this adorable wooden sand set is ready for action. Each scoop has an embossed pattern that's perfect for sand stamping. They're also totally suitable for water play in the wild or the bathtub.

$30

Water play set

Plan Toys water play set

Filled with sand or water, this tabletop sized activity set keeps little ones busy, quiet and happy. (A mama's ideal trifecta 😉). It's big enough to satisfy their play needs but not so big it's going to flood your floors if you bring the fun inside on a rainy day.

$100

Mini golf set

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Fore! This mini golf set is lawn and living room ready. Set up a backyard competition or incorporate into homeschooling brain breaks that shift focus and build concentration.

$40

Vintage scooter balance bike

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Pedals are so 2010. Balance bikes are the way to go for learning to ride a bike while skipping the training wheels stage altogether. This impossibly cool retro scooter-style is built to cruise the neighborhood or open indoor space as they're learning.

$121

Wooden rocking pegasus

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Your little will be ready to take flight on this fun pegasus. It gently rocks back and forth, but doesn't skimp on safety—its winged saddle, footrests and backrest ensure kids won't fall off whether they're rocking inside or outside.

$100

Croquet set

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The cutest croquet set we've ever seen! With adorable animal face wooden balls and a canvas bag for easy clean up, it's also crafted to stick around awhile. Round after round, it's great for teaching kiddos math and problem-solving skills as well.

$45

Wooden digital camera

fathers factory wooden digital camera

Kids get the chance to assemble the camera on their own then can adventure anywhere to capture the best moments. With two detachable magnetic lenses, four built-in filters and video recorder, your little photographer can tap into their creativity from summertime to the holidays.

$179

Wooden bulldozer toy

plan toys wooden bulldozer toy

Whether they're digging up sand in the backyad or picking up toys inside, kids can get as creative as they want picking up and moving things around. Even better? Its wooden structure means it's not an eye sore to look at wherever your digger drops it.

$100

Pull-along hippo

janod toys pull along hippo toy

There's just something so fun about a classic pull-along toy and we love that they seamlessly transition between indoor and outdoor play. Crafted from solid cherry and beechwood, it's tough enough to endure outdoor spaces your toddler takes it on.

$33

Baby forest fox ride-on

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Toddlers will love zooming around on this fox ride-on, and it's a great transition toy into traditional balance bikes. If you take it for a driveway adventure, simply use a damp cloth to wipe down the wheels before bringing back inside.

$88

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The American Academy of Pediatrics says that newborns, especially, do not need a bath every day. While parents should make sure the diaper region of a baby is clean, until a baby learns how to crawl around and truly get messy, a daily bath is unnecessary.

So, why do we feel like kids should bathe every day?

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