Breastfeeding A to Z

How Breastmilk Is Made

Basically two things make milk–stimulation to the nipple “sucking” and calories.

If your body is getting enough stimulation from the baby sucking or from the use of a breast pump and you are getting enough food (typically not losing more than 1-2 pounds or 0.5 to 1 kg per week after your initial postpartum weight loss), your body will make enough milk.   Chapters in books are written on the amazing process your body goes through to do this, and you are encouraged to consume a balanced diet. However, just remember, women all over the world produce adequate and even abundant milk on very inadequate diets. (1)

So if you have any concerns about making enough milk. Let your baby eat more, either more often or for longer periods of time and for you–eat enough not to be hungry.  Ideally, keeping moderation and variety in mind when choosing your food.

  1. Lawrence, RA, Lawrence, RM, Breastfeeding: A Guide for the Medical Professional, 7th edition, Maryland Heights, MO, Elsevier Mosby, 2011, p 283.