Oats are one of the most underrated superfoods for new moms. Oats, though simple, are a powerful addition to a breastfeeding mom’s diet. Oats can be versatile, delicious, and easy and there’s a good reason why a bowl of oatmeal each day is often recommended to boost milk supply.
Nutritional Benefits of Oats
Oats are a food we are all familiar with but did you know they contain many important minerals, fiber, and even protein? This tasty grain is high in iron and other minerals such as zinc, magnesium, and folate, which are all important for a pregnant or breastfeeding mother. Oats also have a combination of soluble and insoluble fiber, which means that they support healthy digestion and can make those postpartum bathroom visits a little easier. Oats are also a comfort food for many, are very satiating and they can be prepared in minutes or even soaked overnight, which is a bonus for a busy new mom. The beta-glucans (a type of soluble fiber) found in oats are linked to lower cholesterol levels, improved digestion, and act as a prebiotic feeding the good bacteria in your intestinal tract.
Benefits of Oats for Breastfeeding Moms
Eating well is a high priority for a new mom, but with little time and energy to spare, it’s also one of the first things that can be forgotten. Here are some benefits of oats for a breastfeeding mom:
- Easy and simple to prepare: leave them soaking overnight for a no-prep breakfast, or make a bowl in minutes as a snack
- High in iron which is especially important for a postpartum mom: oftentimes iron levels are less than ideal going into pregnancy, and after delivery, a mother’s iron levels can drop drastically. Having enough iron is key for establishing and maintaining an adequate milk supply2.
- A bowl of oatmeal a day is a common recommendation to maintain or boost a mom’s milk supply: while research is limited, the benefits likely come from the iron and mineral content, as well as helping the mother get enough calories and protein
- Supports blood sugar balance helps you feel full longer
- An easy way to add additional good fats, fruits & other nutrient-dense foods as a topping or mixed in with your oatmeal
- The familiar and comforting food can help promote relaxation and reduce stress
Benefits of Soaking Oats
Soaking oats for 8-12 hours (or overnight!) is a simple way to “cook” the oats since they will slowly breakdown in liquid. This helps with digestion and absorption of the minerals in oats. Soaking also increases digestibility by breaking down a coating called phytic acid. Phytic acid is found in grains and nuts as nature’s way of protecting these foods from digestion so that they will remain whole and be “planted” to grow after an animal eats them. Even though humans digestion is strong enough to break down grains and nuts, the phytic acid will still negatively impact digestion. Soaking is the super simple way to remove this coating.
Lastly, soaking also provides a lot of ease - you can simply prepare your oats and leave them overnight and have breakfast ready to go in the morning!
Can Oats Increase My Milk Supply?
There is a lot of anecdotal evidence that eating oats daily will increase milk supply. While research on oats is limited, it is known to be true that a mother’s nutrition affects her milk supply quality and quantity (1) more than we previously believed.
Oats Can Increase Milk Supply By:
How Many Servings of Oats are Recommended to Boost my Supply?
A great place to start is to have one bowl of oatmeal per day. It’s totally fine and safe to have more than one serving, and oats make a great snack or 2 am meal. It’s a good idea to incorporate oats into your diet in a few ways, like overnight oats and oatmeal lactation cookies. Eating more than 2 servings a day is probably not necessary as you want to ensure you’re still eating a well-rounded diet.
How to Add Oats into Your Breastfeeding Diet
The beauty of oats is that they are easy and versatile. You can include oats by enjoying:
- A warm bowl of traditional oatmeal with milk and sweetener of choice
- Amp up your oats by mixing in coconut oil and nut butter and topping with berries and seeds
- Enjoy Overnight Oats that have been soaked the day before
- Lactation cookies that contain oatmeal
- Using oat flour in burgers, falafel or anything that requires flour as a binding agent
- Enjoy oat bars, granola bars or other treats with oats (just be sure to watch added sugar and processed ingredients as much as possible)
Introducing Majka Overnight Oats: Elevated Oats for a Breastfeeding Mom
Majka Overnight Oats take traditional oatmeal and combines it with ingredients unique for the needs of a breastfeeding mom. These super-oats contain 7 galactagogues and adaptogens that are known to increase milk supply and support the quality of breastmilk. Along with nutrient-dense chia seeds and almonds these oats are made from real food ingredients with a Majka twist to be perfect for breastfeeding moms. Not only are they superior nutritionally, but Majka Overnight Oats are convenient and customizable. Simply add water or your milk of choice, your favorite sweetener (if desired), shake and leave overnight. Top with your favorite add ons or just hunker down with your nursing babe and enjoy breakfast that’s done for you.
Majka Overnight Oats take the simple oat and have transformed it into a delicious meal or snack to help you thrive postpartum.
(1) Lee S, Kelleher SL. Biological underpinnings of breastfeeding challenges: the role of genetics, diet, and environment on lactation physiology. Am J Physiol Endocrinol Metab. 2016;311(2):E405-E422. doi:10.1152/ajpendo.00495.2015
(2) Toppare MF, Kitapci F, Senses DA, Kaya IS, Dilmen U, Laleli Y. Lactational failure--study of risk factors in Turkish mothers. Indian J Pediatr. 1994;61(3):269-276. doi:10.1007/BF02752222
Want to find out more about oats and how they can help a breastfeeding mama with her supply? Check out our New Product: Overnight Oats to learn about the benefits and best ways to use our oats!