This Sunday my tiny squeak will be 6 months old! This date also marks 6 months in our breastfeeding journey. Prior to falling pregnant, I never gave breastfeeding much thought. I understood the nutritional, biochemical, and physiological aspects of breastfeeding, right down to the key hormones involved. I knew I wanted to give breastfeeding my best go. I wanted to provide this wonderful, nourishing beginning to my daughter’s life. After all, it was only a tiny speck of time in my own life.
At the outset, breastfeeding was tough work. It was exhausting. The “cluster-feeding”, day after day after day… to balance and establish my milk supply was unexpected, not something anyone ever prepares you for! But it is a necessary beginning to feeding your child. While it’s so fresh in my memory, I’ll write an article soon with my key tips to plan for successful breastfeeding.
Then there are the social aspect of breastfeeding. Surrounded by others, it was intimidating to pull out a breast. Especially when bub lost her sh*t; attention was drawn to weary-eyed you clutching your tiny baby and others would chime in…
“Does she have gas?” (That was the most common one) “She looks like she has gas” “Here, give her to me”
In my head, I would say “No, she just wants boob” “And then probably a sleep in her mother’s arms” But seriously, breastfeeding is the most soothing and calming experience for a newborn baby! It is the closest warmth to being back in the security of their mother’s belly.
As a new mum, I second guessed my instincts too many times. It was this second guessing that only increased the anxiety I felt around my new responsibility. For any new mums or mums-to-be reading this, please know; even though you’ve never done this before, your gut instincts are usually right. In those first few months of getting to know your baby, you already know your baby much better than you think!
I’ve spent (almost) 6 months perfecting this lactation cookie recipe. The freezer stash of lactation cookies has continuously outnumbered any expressed milk I managed. They are super easy to make, even in those precious, time-delicate, early weeks with your newborn.
They freeze and defrost super well. So you could even make up a batch when pregnant prior to bub’s arrival. Or better yet, if you know a breastfeeding mumma, make these for her, as a lovely, tasty gift. Freeze them in 2-3 cookie batches, in Glad bags or wrapped in foil. And simply take them out 40 mins or more prior to wanting to demolish them.
These lactation cookies are gluten-free (if you use uncontaminated oats) and the only dairy you might find is in the dark chocolate chips. For an exclusively vegan-friendly version, see my Sticky Date & Ginger Lactation Cookies here.
So what makes “lactation” cookies special?
Truthfully, I’d never heard of lactation cookies or boobie bikkies until I joined the mummy forums whilst pregnant. Lactation cookies didn’t rate a mention during my nutrition postgrad studies. We did, however, discuss “galactogogues” – because scientists love big words that sound impressive to pronounce.
A galactogogue is any substance that promotes or augments the production of breast milk. Natural galactogogues have been used for centuries in many traditional cultures. Some common herbal and nutritional galactogogues include fenugreek, oats, milk thistle, anise, dandelion, fennel seeds, linseeds, marshmallow, brewer’s yeast, and many others. The mechanism(s) of action for many of these substances is unknown with little to no scientific evaluation. However, there is plenty of traditional and anecdotal evidence to suggest safety and possible efficacy.
For women who are truly struggling with breastfeeding, please contact the Australian Breastfeeding Association (or La Leche League in the US) for support, or hire a lactation consultant (IBCLCs are best) to help assess what’s going on. There are a multitude of things that need to occur for established breastfeeding. And perceived or actual low milk supply is one of the biggest reasons for premature cessation of breastfeeding. With tailored advice and support this need not be the case.
So here’s the recipe:
Healthy lactation cookies (choc chip)
- 1½ cups Quick oats
- ⅓ cup Arrowroot (tapioca) flour
- ⅓ cup Flaxseed (ground)
- ¼ cup Coconut sugar
- 3.5 tbs Brewer’s yeast (purchase from Health Food store or Online)
- ½ tsp Baking powder
- ¼ tsp Baking soda
- 1 tsp Cinnamon
- ⅓ cup Dark chocolate nibs
- ¼ cup Coconut oil, room temperature
- ½ cup Maple syrup
- Preheat oven to 170C and line a large tray with baking paper.
- Combine all dry ingredients (except the choc chips) in a large bowl. Mix thoroughly.
- Add coconut oil to a small pot and melt over low heat. Remove from heat.
- Add maple syrup to the coconut oil and combine. It won’t fully combine but the maple syrup helps cool the the coconut oil.
- Add wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and combine to form a dough.
- Make sure mixture is cool and then add the dark chocolate chips. Mix through.
- Roll into balls.
- Place on baking tray and press slightly to about 2 cm.
- Bake for around 13 minutes.
Did you make these cookies?
I spend a lot of time perfecting these recipes to provide freely to you. In return, I get the greatest pleasure from hearing about your experiences. Please leave a comment, rate this recipe or use the hashtags #cocoaandbliss #jtnourish or #jodietaylornutrition so we can connect.Love these? Try my Sticky Date & Ginger Lactation Cookies >>>