The herb Fenugreek

  1. I have heard reports that this herb Fenugreek increases Breast milk supply. Has anyone had any experience with this herb ?

    Some of our Mothers in my NICU area are asking about it, and I cannot find any information on it or what sort of doses it is used in

    Any infromation would be appreciated !
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  2. 7 Comments

  3. by   caroladybelle
    Fenugreek is also known as Bird's-foot, Trigonella, Greek Hayseed and is marketed as Fenu-thyme.

    It has been shown in animal studies to lower total cholesterol, and triglycerides. It is shown to exert hypoglycemic effects. It is also reported to have cardiotonic, diuretic, antihypertensive and antiviral effects.

    Tinctures/solutions may stimulate the uterus of small animals in late pregnancy - It is considered contraindicated in humans during pregnancy!!!!

    Uses of the herb include: Gastritis. Topically, it is used for leg wounds, gout.

    There are claims it benefits diabetics, TB, cellulitis - there are no studies on that.

    Problems associated with it include excessive bleeding and hypoglycemia. Their urine may smell like maple syrup (the taste of the liquid preparation in some mixes. It used to be used as a flavoring agent.
  4. by   Tiki_Torch
    I've known of a few women who had good luck with Fenugreek to help increase their blood supply.

    Here is a good link which includes dosages, etc.:

    http://www.breastfeedingonline.com/fenuhugg-print.html

    and another one with a little less encouragement than the first link:

    http://www.breastfeeding.com/reading_room/herbs.html



  5. by   healingtouchRN
    it is difficult to find studies involving herbs because herbs cannot be patented, since are naturally occuring. The drug companies don't spend the funds to study them because it's not financially savvy.
  6. by   dawngloves
    I tried it and had no increase in my supply. Only an increase in me smelling like maple syrup!
  7. by   NICU_Nurse
    We have a handout that includes a number of herbs, teas (like Mother's Milk tea), and prescription medications (like Reglan), but we ONLY give it out with a strict disclaimer (verbal AND on the handout) that they are not to be undertaken without a doctor's consent and approval. Your moms should be seeing an OB/GYN for follow-up's, so you should encourage them to see the doctor and discuss this with them, or at least have a neonatologist speak to them about these meds. Some of them are seriously contraindicated with certain pre-existing conditions.

    What we usually do, though, is tell them in vague terms that there are things they can investigate with their MD, and then give them another pamphlet and discuss with them natural ways to increase flow (ie, pumping often, increasing fluid intake, dietary considerations, pumping in the NICU with thier babies present rather than at home, etc.).
  8. by   kimtab
    I tried this while pumping and had a temporary increase in supply, which then tapered back off over the course of several weeks. It did work well temporarily though. I followed the dosage on the product bottle for "nutritional supplement" usage. I don't recall smelling like maple syrup but it did turn my urine a rather psychedelic shade of green.
  9. by   manna
    I'm not a nurse (yet), but I am a breastfeeding mother.... 18 mos in and still going strong.

    This is anecdotal, but....

    Fenugreek worked great for me - I took the pills and drank Mother's Milk Tea. Also ate lots of oatmeal and tuna, and drank TONS of water. Best and hardest to learn was finally learning to relax with the pump - it's not quite the same, but once you get the hang of it, it gets easier

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