How Much Fenugreek Should I Take To Increase My Milk Supply?

Lots of moms are worried about their milk supply, especially if they are pumping or returning to work. There are many ways to increase your milk supply without taking herbs, but if you decide that herbs are for you, fenugreek is a great choice. Always check with your doctor or a lactation consultant before taking any herbs.

fenugreekIf you are going to take an herb to increase your milk supply, we recommend taking a combination of fenugreek with blessed thistle. You can find this item at Whole Foods and other natural herb stores. The bottle of fenugreek that you get gives a recommended dosage. You will likely need to take much more than this recommended dosage to see an effect. Generally, most lactation consultants will recommend taking 3 to 4 pills, 3 to 4 times per day. You will know when you are taking enough because your skin will smell like maple syrup!

Fenugreek works great for some moms and makes less of a difference for others. Give it a few weeks, if it doesn’t improve your supply, check into other ways to increase your supply. Our Pumping Tips Article gives great tips for increasing your supply.

You can find more great information about fenugreek on as well!

Have you used fenugreek? Please share your experiences!

9 comments to How Much Fenugreek Should I Take To Increase My Milk Supply?

  • Oh, Fenugreek, lol. I was an exclusive expresser for both my sons (don’t judge! It worked for us ;0), and used Fenugreek with my second one since I had an emergency C-section and it took longer for the milk to come in. My doctor recommended I try it it. I only saw a marginal increase, but I’ve known women who it worked wonders for. It’s a pain to take the 9 capsules per day, really upset my stomach, and the maple syrup pee was kindof disconcerting, but in the larger scope of things I’d say it was a pretty blah experience. It did increase milk supply for me, but the negative side effects kinda made it a wash.

    Catherine’s last blog post..Trekaroo I Love You Too!

  • Erica

    Wish I had this when I was breastfeeding my first one…Thanks for sharing.

  • Hannah

    I took fenugreek with my daughter for maintaining/increasing supply for the sole purpose of breastfeeding and pumping to have a supply built up to help later on down the road if my milk were to dry up. I expressed 400 ounces by the time she was 5 months old. I used some to make her baby food instead of using water. (Thought it would be better for her) used some for the babysitter or grandparents to have one had. I have continued to pump… much less now as she is a year old. However, when she was 5 months old she had a cousin born 3.5 weeks early and the mother never had any milk come in. (my sister in law) I was able to give my nephew a very decent supply for the first three months… as I has continued to pump and nurse full time. I have fenugreek to thank for that. Yes, maple syrup pee… not the greatest smell… but worth every ounces of milk I was able to give my daughter and nephew.

  • […] How much of the fenugreek are you taking? You should be taking 3-4 pills 3-4 times per day. Your body should smell like maple syrup. You can read more about fenugreek here. […]

  • […] – it is called “Steel Cut Oats” and it is great at increasing milk supply. 3) Take Fenugreek: read more here to find out how much to take. 4) Read this article for great pumping tips. 5) Drink […]

  • chantal Mattis

    does it work? my dr told me to try it cause my supply started to decrease at 3 wks and i dont wanna use formula. if it works how much do i have to take?

  • Hi Chantal, For some moms, the fenugreek really works – for others, it doesn’t work as well. I recommend buying the fenugreek mixed with blessed thistle (which you can buy at Whole Foods or other health food stores). You will need to take enough that your skin smells like maple syrup. Please let me know how it goes. — Judy

  • […] supplements, tell her to keep taking the fenugreek and to make sure that she is taking enough of it. Her skin will smell like maple syrup when she is […]

  • There are lots of great comments on my facebook page too – look here: – I will copy some of them for ease of reading:

    Sylva Menard
    Please also remind her to work with IBCLCs and/or her local La Leche League leaders in this special situation, and that the technique of pumping 5 min, 1 min break, 5 on, 1 off, 5 on can be helpful in telling the body to make more milk.
    Skin-to-skin, kangaroo care, and a hospital-grade electric pump are all also important.

    Katy Rank Lev
    the breastfeeding center directed me toward the stanford breastfeeding videos. the hands-on pumping technique really helped me get more milk from the pump.

    Stefanie Stanley Dalton
    Lots of skin to skin as soon as possible! Don’t let the nurses tell her it will “tire him” as mine did. Hogwash! She could even pump while doing skin to skin! And make sure she has a good pump? A single electric is not good enough for this task…when my son was preemie I rented the hospital grade double pump and it made the job so much easier and … See Morefaster…and quieter! Quieter definitely helped when I was getting up in the night to pump every two hours. Woke me less, let me be more rested! Lastly, drink water and eat!!! This is a stressful time, but she can’t forget to take care of her nutritional needs! And have lots of people around assuring her she is doing a fantastic job! :)

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