According to nutrition specialists, the first 1000 days of your infant’s life are crucial in providing meals with the right nutritional balance.
Your baby’s brain development is at its peak during this phase, so you want to ensure proper feeding.
Your feeding schedule determines the quantity of breastmilk you produce; the more you feed your tot, the more milk you have.
However, some mothers have struggled to meet their babies’ feed demands for want of sufficient breastmilk. Or, maybe you want to stock up on milk before you return to work, and you will need to pump a lot of it for your milk bank.
What is Oat Milk?
As the options for non-dairy milk alternatives increase, oat milk has become a popular feature on grocery store shelves and in coffee shops.
Oat milk is derived from whole grain oats soaked in water, blended, and strained through a cheesecloth or a nut milk bag. The extracted liquid gives you nutritious and creamy oat milk.
Oat milk is low in fat and high in calcium and various other nutrients, making it a popular choice for mothers looking for healthy breakfast options.
Does Taking Oat Milk Increase Your Milk Production?
Yes, taking oat milk will help boost your milk supply. Although there is no scientific backing to support this theory, many mothers and lactating consultants have attested to the benefits of oat milk while breastfeeding.
There is no harm in trying it out. I have seen moms on different forums claim that it helped them increase their milk production.
Many foods and dietary supplements are credited with improving milk production. Oat milk is one such superfood that comes up in discussions.
How Oat Milk May Boost Milk Supply
Oats are renowned for their rich iron content. During pregnancy, many women experience iron and folate acid deficiencies, resulting in anemia.
Maternal anemia may continue even after giving birth, lasting anywhere between 6 and 12 months postpartum.
Without enough iron stores in the body, your breastmilk’s volume is affected. Drinking oat milk will increase iron levels in your body and boost your milk supply in the process.
Having the right iron levels in the body helps boost your immune system, giving you the ability to fight breastfeeding problems like clogged milk ducts (which can affect your milk supply), milk blebs, and painful nipples.
Oat milk is rich in beta-glucans, phytochemicals, protein, fiber, and carbohydrates. These all have a positive effect on the quantity and quality of milk produced by a lactating mother.
Therefore, you can experience increased milk production by incorporating oats into your diet.
Oxytocin is a hormone produced by the human body, which acts on organs like the breasts and uterus, controlling vital aspects of the reproductive system, including childbirth and lactating. It also affects human behavior.
Oats are comfort food and have a calming effect on your body. When your body is relaxed, it produces oxytocin, and the hormone stimulates breastmilk production.
Oats also help lower your cholesterol levels, making you healthier as a nursing mom and improving your lactation.
How Long After Eating Oatmeal Will Milk Supply Increase?
Generally, the benefits of consuming oatmeal will take effect four to six hours post-consumption. So, eat your oatmeal early morning so you can have enough breastmilk to pump later in the evening.
However, other things to consider may vary your body’s milk production time after consuming oats. These include:
- How often you breastfeed
- Your overall diet
- Your body’s chemistry and metabolism.
Daily consumption of oatmeal or oat milk will yield better results for your milk production efforts.
How Much Oat Milk Should I Drink to Boost Milk Supply?
On average, the daily recommended calcium intake for breastfeeding mothers is 1300 mg.
To meet this recommendation, you will need to drink three and a quarter glasses of oat milk per day.
If you want to increase your milk production, there isn’t a specific recommended quantity you have to consume.
Varying factors determine your body’s nutritional needs. You may need to do some trial and error to evaluate how a bowl of oatmeal or a glass of oat milk affects your lactation, then work out your required consumption from there.
What Is The Best Oatmeal Brand For Breastfeeding?
Whether rolled, old-fashioned, steel-cut, or instant oats, any kind of oatmeal is good for increasing your milk production. Therefore, any brand will do in giving you the nutritional benefits of oats.
Additional Benefits of Eating Oatmeal
Oatmeal and oat milk have other health benefits which help boost your immune system, indirectly improving milk production.
Immune system boost
When your immune system is robust, your body can fight diseases better. The beta-glucans contained in oat milk are great immune boosters.
Studies have linked oatmeal with enhanced disease resistance against bacterial and parasitic infections in humans and animals.
Oatmeal contains considerable amounts of magnesium, which may assist the body in converting glucose. Magnesium helps the body in the secretion of insulin and thus, reduces your risk of diabetes.
It does not contain common allergens like soy, dairy, nuts, and eggs. It may, however, contain gluten if processed with products containing wheat.
Whole grain oats do not contain gluten, but check on the packaging and purchase gluten-free oats if you’re gluten intolerant.
Rich in fiber
Oat milk contains more fiber than most other non-dairy milk options.
Dietary fiber helps prevent constipation, lower cholesterol levels, control blood sugar levels, keep a healthy weight, and lower the risk of heart disease and certain cancers.
Low in fat
Oat milk is the ideal choice if you want to enjoy your milk without worrying about possibly adding on the pounds.
Oat milk contains less fat than other non-dairy milk choices, so you don’t have to worry about increasing your postpartum weight.
How to Incorporate Oats Into Your Diet
Let’s face it, eating oatmeal every morning can become monotonous. Let’s look at some ideas that will make your intake of oats more exciting:
- Add life to your bowl of oatmeal by adding honey, nuts, and berries.
- Enjoy your favorite cereal with oat milk.
- Simply having a glass or two of oat milk in the morning or at any other time during your day.
- Take your morning cup of coffee with oat milk. The thickness of oat milk will make for a creamy cup of coffee to start your day.
- Try warm oat milk with cinnamon, vanilla, and your preferred sweetener if you enjoy comfort drinks.
- Make your healthy smoothies using oat milk instead of dairy milk or water.
- Snack on some wholesome homemade oatmeal cookies.
- Make some nutritious oat bars with honey and your favorite nuts, seeds, or berries to enjoy when those hunger pangs begin.
It is not scientifically proven that eating oatmeal, and increasing breast milk are related, but many swear by it, so it’s worth giving a shot. After all, there are countless other benefits to your health.