• Do galactagogues like malunggay really work?

    Want to increase your breast milk supply? Do you think those malunggay capsules really work? Get it straight from our expert, Abigail Yabot, certified lactation consultant.
    by Abigail L. Vernida-Yabot .
  • capsulesMost moms would like to breastfeed their babies for a long time.  However, due to lack of information or support, moms may have low milk supply after returning back to work or introducing the bottle.  Hence, they resort to various techniques and products that promise to increase their breast milk supply.  Galactagogues are one of them.

    By definition, a galactagogue is a food or drug that promotes or increases the flow of a mother's breast milk.  In the Philippines, we have various malunggay capsules and supplements available.  But the question remains: Do they really work?

     

    It’s Still All About Supply and Demand

    Breastfeeding works by law of supply and demand.  Hence, the best way to increase supply is by increasing demand.  Also, breastfeeding has a psychological aspect to it. This means that when a mom is happy, healthy, confident, and secure, her breast milk flows to the baby very well.  

     

    The Secret of Malunggay is the Iron

    There is a biological aspect as well which has to do with the production of milk by the body.  In order to produce the right quantity of milk, mommy needs to be healthy. Malunggay is very rich in iron, which is usually deficient for moms who have just given birth (and lost a lot of blood) and lack sleep (from waking up every two hours or so for the baby).  What maluggay does is charge the mom's body with iron; hence, making her healthier and giving her the proper energy she needs to produce milk.

    It may not be a direct effect but it still helps.  Of course, when you do drink capsules, you also have to ingest water with it.  This increased water intake also helps in milk supply. So, the total effect is increased milk production.  These malunggay capsules are especially helpful for moms who are not fond of eating green leafy vegetables.  But for those who can, eat tinola, munggo, diningding and the like with fresh malunggay leaves. These have bioavailable iron content that increases the general health of the mom, thereby increasing breast milk supply.

     

    Photo from sxc.hu

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