Expert Warns No Evidence That Lactation Cookies Help Milk Production
If you are or were a breastfeeding mummy, you may have come across the raved about ‘lactation cookies’ when researching methods to help breastfeeding.
Galactogogues are supposedly found in a number of every day foods; Guinness and oats being two prime examples! Herbs like flax and fenugreek are also examples, and you can be prescribed medication called Domperidone which is a known galactogogue. Galactogogues work by increasing levels of the hormone prolactin.
For decades, lactation cookies have been lauded as a breast milk supply booster due to containing the galactogogues oats, flax seed and brewers yeast, and from looking online we can see that many mummies feel that their supply has been helped by eating lactation cookies.
However, Evelyn Volders, a Lactation Consultant based in Melbourne, Australia, isn’t convinced.
‘They won’t do any harm,’ she stated, ‘but there’s no evidence they can promote milk flow, either. Breastfeeding mothers almost all question their milk supply at one time or another, and will naturally look for solutions to ensure their milk flow is meeting baby’s needs.’
Studies have established that medication is effective, but there’s little evidence that these specific foods do much to impact prolactin levels.
We can imagine that the psychological aspect could be attributed to the popularity of these cookies; a mummy worries about her supply, eats the biscuits that other mummies are raving about, and the assurance of doing this gives her a mental boost that relaxes her and helps baby’s closeness, latch, and let down of milk, perhaps, as being stressed can affect all of these leading to breastfeeding difficulties? We can’t say for sure, but it is certainly food for thought!
Either way, even if these cookies don’t directly cause an increased supply, they’re certainly helping mummies in some way so they’re worth a munch, even if it’s just for the snacking benefits!
Lactation Cookie Recipes
How Sweet Eats has a very highly rated recipe for lactation cookies here! With over 800 comments raving about these cookies, they’re definitely one to try. They look bloomin’ delicious!
So, to conclude; there is doubt over whether lactation cookies directly improve supply, but they won’t cause harm, and if they give you a mental boost which helps you to continue breastfeeding, go for it!
Have YOU tried lactation cookies? Did you find that they helped at all? Share your experiences with us in the comments.
Happy nursing, mamas.
Love from Katie & Team BBY. Xx