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You are probably reading this article because you are a vegan mama who is breastfeeding. Maybe you are a vegan mama who is looking to increase her milk supply or wanting to learn more about a vegan mama breastfeeding diet. Or maybe you are just curious to know if vegan mamas can breastfeed in general – they absolutely can!
In any way, you will learn what to eat daily in order to keep your milk supply up to baby’s demand. For more breastfeeding essentials, click here.
My baby is currently 11 months, and we have never had a problem with milk supply. I can’t help but think it’s because of my diet, which is listed below.
Please note that I am NOT a dietician – just an informed vegan mama who wants the best for herself and her baby.
Water is SO important for breastfeeding mamas, vegan or not. Drinking water keeps you hydrated and assists with milk production. Breast milk is 87% water, afterall. So, invest in a Hyrdoflask, and get to drinking!
I eat oats at least once a day – either oatmeal, oat milk, oatmeal cookies, oat muffins, or an oatmeal bar – because after water, oats have helped keep up my supply. I can see and feel it instantly. If it pools around baby’s lips as she’s nursing, it’s a good sign!
3. Whole Grains
All whole grains, not just oats, are great for milk production – quinoa, rice, barley, etc. You may hear rumors that the barley in beer increases milk production, but that’s false. Drinking alcohol may decrease milk production and inhibit let-down.
Nut butters are so tasty in oatmeal and the perfect fat to help with milk supply. Obviously, peanut butter is the most common nut butter, but there are so many different options. Almond butter is creamy, delicious, and nutritious. Almonds have more calcium than any other nut, which is needed for milk production. You can put it on toast, in smoothies, or eat it by the spoonful.
5. Dark greens
Dark greens are so versatile. You can add them to quiches, sandwiches, or just eat them by themselves. I add raw spinach to most meals, mainly because I craved it at the beginning of my breastfeeding journey. Kale is great in any chili or soup. And your other favorites – broccoli, asparagus, brussel sprouts – can easily be sautéed and seasoned for a quick snack or side.
Beans, beans, beans – all the beans – black beans, kidney beans, chickpeas, lentils! Beans are a great source of calcium and protein. Protein is incredibly important for milk supply. You can eat beans/legumes at breakfast, lunch, or dinner. They are cheap and easy to prepare. They are also a great protein if you’re doing vegan BLW and you won’t have to prepare two dishes
7. Berry protein smoothie
Many doctors recommend that breastfeeding mamas increase their protein intake by at least 20g per day, which can easily be done by adding a protein shake or smoothie to your daily routine. Luckily, when I was pregnant, I craved smoothies. I had berry smoothie every day with protein powder. The habit continued while I was breastfeeding, and guess what? I’m still drinking them.
Smoothies are great because you can drink them any time of day. I prefer to start my day with one. For breakfast, I usually have a berry protein smoothie with multigrain toast, nut butter, and chia or hemp seeds. I really like this protein powder (using my affiliate link gives you 10% off your purchase). The natural flavor has no added gums, but the vanilla tastes the best!
8. Prenatal vitamin
It’s important to continue taking your prenatal vitamin while you’re breastfeeding while also eating healthily. Most of your nutrients should come from your diet, but taking a prenatal ensures that you are getting what you need for you and baby to thrive.
I hope you find this list helpful. What foods helped to keep up your milk supply? Comment below!