So apparently galactagogue is a word.
It means “a food or drug that promotes or increases the flow of a mother’s milk.”
Just to be clear, I never thought I would be talking about lactation on here…but I’m always down to talk about cookies so I guess these have earned their place.
I mentioned in my last post that we’ve been going to some specialists for Wendy’s weight. To help her gain more weight, the doctors recommended that I pump twice a day and supplement that breastmilk with formula. When I started pumping I realized that I wasn’t producing as much milk as I thought (sorry, baby) and all the guilt and emotions set me on a crazed search to discover how to increase my supply.
Cue the galactagogues.
There are lots of things that historically have been used to increase milk supply. Obviously, I’m not a doctor and if you’ve got serious issues you should go talk to a doctor…but here’s a list of things I’ve used in the past month that have made a noticeable difference in my milk supply:
- Lots of water
- Green vegetables –especially spinach
- Mother’s Milk Tea
- Marshmallow root (not marshmallows…)
Some other things that are considered galactagogues: oats, brewers yeast, flaxseed, nuts…
Plus every nursing mom needs lots of calories.
Plus is it even possible to survive without chocolate?
Anyway, I think it’s pretty clear that all these things point to cookies, right?
Or at least they did to whoever invented Lactation Cookies and I can’t complain. There are several recipes out there for Lactation Cookies (you can even just buy them already baked!), and I kind of wanted a mix of good stuff (read: healthy) so that I wouldn’t feel bad eating them for breakfast and good stuff (read: delicious) so that I wouldn’t have to choke them down. I tweaked the recipe from How Sweet Eats just a bit and really loved the results. The cookies turned out chewy, chocolatey, and had the perfect crunch between the nuts and the golden brown edges.
So if you’re nursing, whip these up and eat as many as you want-guilt free! I can’t guarantee that the cookies themselves will increase your milk supply…but I do think the ingredients are a great step in the right direction. Plus munching on some cookies is bound to decrease your stress levels which will also do you-and your milk production-a world of good.
Here’s the recipe:
1 1/2 cups oats
3/4 cup flour (I used white whole wheat)
2-5 Tablespoons brewers yeast
1 1/2 Tablespoons ground flaxseed
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
6 Tablespoons butter
2 Tablespoons coconut oil
3/4 cup sugar (I used coconut sugar)
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup Chocolate Chips (optional; use more or less to taste)
1/2 cup Chopped walnuts or almonds (optional; use more or less to taste)
Preheat oven to 350°. Combine oats, flour, brewers yeast, flaxseed, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a small bowl. In a separate bowl or stand mixer, beat butter and coconut oil until they are creamy. Add in sugar and beat again. Mix in the egg and vanilla. Add the dry ingredients and mix until combined. Gently stir in the chocolate chips and nuts. Form dough into roughly 1 inch balls (or use a cookie scoop🙌) and place on greased cookie sheet about 2 inches apart. Bake at 350° for 10-14 minutes or until cookies just start to become golden around the edges.
-The oats, brewers yeast, flaxseed and nuts all historically help to increase milk supply. If you can’t find flaxseed, don’t sweat it. Just omit it knowing you’ve got some other great galactagogues in these cookies.
-You should be able to find the brewers yeast and ground flaxseed in any health food store but they’ll vary in price. WinCo is my favorite place for the flaxseed-it’s in the bulk section so you don’t have to buy a ton (not that it’s expensive-just that it’s not something I use often). And the cheapest place I found for the brewers yeast was Natural Grocers (about $10 for 1 pound). I also really love vitacost.com for either product if you prefer buying online/are down to wait a couple days for shipping.
-You’ll notice there’s a big range for how much brewers yeast you can include in the dough. I dumped in the full 5 Tablespoons because I wanted as much help as I could get. Putting that much brewers yeast in did give the cookies just the slightest hint of an after taste…I don’t quite know how to describe the taste either. It wasn’t bad but it wasn’t necessarily good either. If that weirds you out, or if you’re making the cookies for someone else, I’d recommend 2-3 Tablespoons instead. (But really-the brewers yeast flavor isn’t too noticeable…especially if you’ve got a good amount of chocolate chips).
-These cookies freeze really well!