Boost Milk Supply Naturally
Stinging nettle (Urtica dioica), also known as common nettle, is a dark, leafy green plant that is high in iron and considered to be very nutritious. It has been used by women for generations to treat anemia after childbirth and to encourage the making of more breast milk. Nettle is thought to help stimulate milk production and increase the supply of breast milk.
It is generally considered safe to take after giving birth and can be continued for an extended period of time. The side effects from nettle are usually mild, but stomach upset and diarrhea may occur. If your supply of milk is ok, or immediately after childbirth there may be a risk of developing a superabundant supply – so use nettle mindfully. Do not take stinging nettle while you are pregnant.
How do you include Nettle?
- Nettle is similar to spinach and other dark green, leafy vegetables. It can be cooked for use in soups, stews and pasta dishes in the place of other leafy greens.
- Most mums love having Nettle as a tea. Place 1 to 4 teaspoons of dried nettle leaf in a cup of boiling water. Allow 10 minutes to steep. You can enjoy this tea preparation up to six times a day.
- Nettle can be used in combination with other herbs like fenugreek and fennel to further increase milk supply (which happily go well together in a tea!)
Other benefits of Nettle
- Stinging nettle is a very nutritious herb. Due to its iron-rich content, nettle has been used to treat anemia and fight fatigue and exhaustion by building up the blood supply. – great to nursing mums, just be cautious not to use if your milk supply is abundant already.
- It acts as a natural antihistamine and is helpful in the treatment of allergies, hayfever and asthma.
- It has been used to treat inflammation, joint pain, arthritis and gout.
- It has been used to treat urinary issues and problems involving the prostate gland.
For more advice speak to mums nutrition expert Ali Dear, www.alidear.com