Peppermint and Breastfeeding

Peppermint and Breastfeeding

Many women stop drinking peppermint tea when they start breastfeeding, as there are many website that state peppermint will reduce your milk supply.  However, it's actually a really difficult topic - there are absolutely no scientific studies that look at this, and the NHS do not advise you to stop drinking peppermint tea.  

 

The only official scientific studies in the area, look at the impact of peppermint essential oil on healing cracked nipples - and it's actually really effective for this!

 

But there is one anecdotal study has been done by an essential oil company on the impact of peppermint essential oil on breastfeeding (https://tisserandinstitute.org/peppermint-and-breastfeeding-results-of-poll/https://www.camillefreeman.com/2013/01/peppermint-breastfeeding/ ). 

 

This study asked women who took peppermint essential oil drops if they saw an impact on their milk supply. 30% said they did, specifically if they had 3 or more drops of essential oil a day (this is the equivalent of 10 cups of our Final Push which is 40% peppermint, or 3-4 cups of a pure peppermint blend).  The 30% who reported issues all saw these issues disappear within 2 days when they stopped taking the oil - so it was quick to return to normal.

 

Based on this evidence, it would seem best to advise that you be cautious with your peppermint tea intake, but not that you should cut it out entirely. 

 

You can roughly estimate that 1 drop of essential is a minimum 2 cups of pure peppermint tea (or over 4 cups of our Final Push). 

 

4 cups a day is the NHS guideline on drinking herbal tea (of any kind), and we recommend it as a very cautious way to make sure you don't take in too much peppermint oil.  We strongly advise that if you're planning on breastfeeding and you drink our Final Push, just stick to a 3 cup a day maximum and you shouldn't see any impact on your supply.  

 

You can also support your supply with our Milk's Up from 37 weeks, and also adding other galactagogues into your diet (like oats - eat porridge, hobnobs and flapjack!), whilst expressing milk.  These actions are brilliant to support supply.

 

But if you love peppermint, don't feel you have to give it up entirely!  You can still enjoy it as part of the recommended NHS guidelines - life is restricted enough when you breastfeed, keep this simple pleasure in your life (in moderation!)

 

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