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(13 Posts)
lasnosage Sat 10-Nov-12 15:19:27

Hello, has anyone experience of taking fenugreek to increase milk supply?

My dd is 3.5 weeks and not up to her birth weight and her gain is very slow. Had a meeting with mw yesterday and they feel that the issue is probably my milk supply and I am inclined to agree, with ds I had plenty of milk but this time round by the evening my boobs feel empty.

Mw suggested fenugreek and a prescription drug. I am thinking I'll go with fenugreek initially. How often do I take it? Anyone recommend a brand? Do you need to take it long term or can you stop when there is increased supply?

Hope someone out there can advise :-)

Ellellie Sat 10-Nov-12 15:25:12

Hiya, I took fenugreek to try and increase my supply to be able to pump a little more. I took the max dose for a day and by the next morning was full to the brim! I did however smell like curry for a couple of days afterwards :-S I have a friend who didn't have any luck with it though...

Something simple that I found really helps me "produce more" is staying hydrated, drinking lots of water. Hope you get sorted soon :-)

lasnosage Sat 10-Nov-12 15:30:25

Thank you Ellellie, actually the hydration thing is interesting because i realise that since being home I haven't been eating very well or drinking enough water, just grabbing a cup of tea here and there and whatever I can find in the fridge. I should know better!

soundevenfruity Sat 10-Nov-12 15:32:45

Oh, the smell! I still remember it. I drank it as tea with other "milk inducing" herbs and capsules from Holland & Barrett. Don't remember how many you are supposed to take. It didn't make a huge difference but I know of at least one girl I met in breastfeeding clinic who swore by it. The prescription drug was really good but the quantity which they do prescribe is much lower than what breastfeeding experts advise. You can buy in over the counter (this is how I supplemented) but it was a major operation with different people buying it for me as there is a limit. I wouldn't go with what a MW says as in my experience they (and HV) rarely know what they are talking about when it comes to breastfeeding. I would find a breastfeeding clinic near you (they are normally set up in hospitals) or a LLL counsellor because they just see more difficult cases and can see a difference between a normal drop and an abnormal.

soundevenfruity Sat 10-Nov-12 15:34:27

If you are snacking make sure that you have on hand at all time high protein, high fat snacks (i.e. full fat milk, cheese, quiche etc). And drinking enough water obviously.

Ellellie Sat 10-Nov-12 15:35:37

I find it tough with 1 child, couldn't imagine trying with 2!

I keep a couple of camping style water bottles full dotted around the house to have a swig from when I see them. Normally there is one on the living room table and another in the kitchen. Little and often! :-)

Loobylou222 Sat 10-Nov-12 15:38:37

Aaahhh I STANK of curry when I was taking fenugreek!! It was horrible!

I didn't start taking it until dd was 3 months old, it helped a bit but I think I started to late, but you should have better luck than me at 3 weeks.

I was given the prescription drug in the but didn't take it was one of the side affects was seizures and being epileptic, I didn't want to risk it. Also it isn't specifically for breast feeding, milk supply is another side affect so I would think carefully and read leaflet before taking it.

tittytittyhanghang Sat 10-Nov-12 15:42:46

I took it but by the end i was taking 6 tablets 4 times a day and it was working out rather expensive, so i went to my gp and was prescribed domperidone, which was free.

tittytittyhanghang Sat 10-Nov-12 15:44:38

I started off on a low dose (about 2 4x a day) but had to gradually increase it to keep it effective. Was great when barratts had BOGOF deals on, as i think i was about £12.99 for 100, which didn't go far once i was on 24 a day.

lasnosage Sat 10-Nov-12 15:56:29

Wow, thanks everyone for sharing - I don't feel quite so lost now. Have ordered some online, not looking forward to the pong but if it works I'll be happy.

We're attending some bf clinics next week to get other stuff checked out so hopefully we can get this sorted. I'll be very disappointed if I'm not able to feed her as I really enjoyed bf ds.

TheNameisNOTZiggy Sun 11-Nov-12 23:31:24

I took a handout on domperidone for bf to my gp & mw. It is written by the bf guru dr jack Newman.
Thus GP agreed to prescribe 8 tabs per day. I actually took 9 for a month. Been on it 4 months now & started to wean off about 6 weeks ago, following dr newmans other hand out re coming off the drug.

A fantastic drug for my bf relationship.
My GP wanted MW support before prescribing that amount so talk to MW ASAP.

A 3 tabs per day dosage did nothing for me.
The GP will want reassurance you have tried everything else (ie getting latch right, pumping a million times a day, skin to skin, feeding on demand etc). I had seen a LC privately and was about to have pfb's TT snipped and had support re latch so GP was reassured.

I also took fenugreek (9 tabs a day) + blessed thistle (same dose!) but in the end replaced them with the Mothers Milk Capsules, which contain those herbs & others. All available from amazon. very effective.
I also drink nursing tea which I now quite like!!! I was drinking 3-4 cups a day but now not so many. I would make a pot in the morning & then put a container of it in the fridge to drink iced later.

I also recommend baking lactation cookies. Yummy. DH loves them too!!!
I make the banana raisin ones from here:

Good luck. All the effort has been well worth it for us.

TryDrawingAPicture Sun 11-Nov-12 23:58:01

A tip from a lady I know who is training as a lactation consultant: if you smell like curry when taking fenugreek, you're not taking enough. At the correct dose, you should smell like maple syrup, not curry. Sounds mad but she is seriously knowledgeable. It's something to do with some component of fenugreek which is also found in maple syrup. I'm sure someone who knows more about this stuff than me will be along to explain properly.

Thechick Mon 12-Nov-12 08:47:40

I'm taking it at the moment. I started about a week ago but I don't think I have my dosage right just yet, i felt like i was taking too much to begin with and then not enough. Initially i was taking 1 tablet 3times a day which was not enough and then 2 tablets 3 times a day which was too much, so on about 4 or 5 at the mo. I took it with ds1 13 yrs ago too and it worked really well. I bought mine from Holland and Barrett and I also was prescribed the domperidone which I haven't tried yet and from the comments on here I don't think I will. I think you need to keep taking it, you can't just stop when your supply is built up, I don't really remember with ds1 what my supply was like when i stopped taking it but i think we were down to like 1 or 2 feeds by that time. i did read somewhere that supply really drops if you stop. What I would like clarification on is if our LO needs more milk, do you have to up the tablets being taken or can you stay on the same amount and the amount of feeding will increase supply? (Sorry to hijack thread)

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