new mom breastfeeding baby drinking herbal tea as one of the best drinks for breastfeeding moms

Best Drinks for Breastfeeding Moms: Healthy and Hydrating Options

Congratulations on your new bundle of joy! As a new mom, you’re likely juggling a million things at once, from changing diapers to late-night feedings. But there’s one thing that’s absolutely crucial for your health and well-being (and your baby’s too!) while breastfeeding: staying hydrated.

Drinking enough fluids is essential for maintaining your milk supply, preventing dehydration, and keeping your body functioning at its best. But with so many options out there, it can be overwhelming to figure out which drinks are best for you and your little one.

Let’s explore the best drinks for breastfeeding moms, from classic H2O to tasty smoothies and herbal teas. We’ll cover the benefits of each drink, how much you should aim to drink each day, and even share some delicious recipes you can make at home.

So grab a glass of water (or your favorite beverage of choice) and let’s dive in!

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Health and Nutrition During Breastfeeding

A well-rounded diet with proper hydration contributes to a healthy breastfeeding experience for both you and your baby. Here are some things to keep in mind about hydration during breastfeeding.

Importance of Hydration

Staying well hydrated while breastfeeding is crucial for not only maintaining your milk supply but also for your overall health. Drinking enough water and other fluids helps to promote lactation and keeps your body functioning properly. It’s important to quench your thirst and drink even before you start to feel dehydrated.

While breastfeeding, you may need to increase your fluid intake to meet the demands of milk production. Aim to drink at least 8 to 10 glasses of water each day. Besides water, you can also opt for healthy drinks like herbal teas or milk to keep yourself well-hydrated.

Essential Nutrients for Breastfeeding Moms

Your diet plays a significant role in your baby’s growth and development during breastfeeding. You need to consume a well-balanced diet with extra calories to provide the necessary nutrients for yourself and your baby. Most diets range from 1,600 to 2,000 calories but when you’re breastfeeding, you should aim to eat an extra 350 to 500 calories a day.

Here are the essential nutrients and some food sources for a nursing mom:

  • Protein: Consuming enough protein is important for both your and your baby’s health. Include a variety of protein-rich foods in your diet, such as lean meat, poultry, fish, eggs, and beans.
  • Calcium: Calcium is crucial for maintaining your bone health and supporting your baby’s growing bones and teeth. Include calcium-rich foods like dairy products, leafy greens, and fortified foods in your diet.
  • Iron: Iron is needed for the production of hemoglobin which helps transport oxygen in your blood. Keep up your iron levels by incorporating red meats, poultry, fish, lentils, and fortified cereals in your meals.
  • Vitamin D: This vitamin is essential for calcium absorption and bone health. Additionally, it supports your baby’s immune system. Include fortified dairy products, egg yolks, or fatty fish in your diet.
  • Folate: Folate supports the production of new cells and helps prevent neural tube defects in babies. Incorporate sources of folate like leafy greens, legumes, and enriched grains into your diet.
new mom holding baby drinking water as one of the best drinks for breastfeeding moms

The Best Drinks for Breast Milk Supply

Here are some of the best drinks to help boost your breast milk production and keep you and your breastfeeding baby healthy.


Water is essential for staying hydrated and maintaining a healthy milk supply. It is recommended that you drink more water than usual while breastfeeding; aim for around 12 cups or 3 liters daily. Staying hydrated not only enhances milk production but also helps keep your energy levels up. My tip is to keep a water bottle always by your side!


Milk is a great source of calcium and protein, both of which are beneficial for breastfeeding moms. Calcium is especially important for the growth and development of your baby’s bones, while protein helps to build and repair body tissues. Drinking milk supports your milk production by providing these essential nutrients.

Herbal Teas

Herbal teas can be a lovely addition to your breastfeeding journey. Lactation tea is specially designed with ingredients that can help increase your milk supply. Look for blends containing ingredients like fenugreek, fennel, and blessed thistle. Just remember to moderate your intake, as some herbs can be harmful in large amounts.

A note on fenugreek: 

It’s important to note that while fenugreek is often touted as a natural way to increase milk supply, it can have mixed results for some breastfeeding moms. While some women may experience an increase in milk production after taking fenugreek, others may actually experience a decrease in milk supply.

If you do decide to try fenugreek, it’s recommended to start with small amounts and gradually increase as needed while monitoring your milk supply and any potential side effects. And if you notice any negative changes in your milk supply or experience any side effects, it’s important to stop taking fenugreek and consult with your healthcare provider.

Nut and Seed Milks

Non-dairy milk options such as almond milk, coconut milk, or oat milk can also be beneficial for breastfeeding moms, as they are often fortified with vitamins and minerals. These plant-based milks also provide some protein and have the added benefit of being suitable for moms avoiding dairy. Oat milk is particularly famous for its potential to increase milk production.

Coconut Water

Coconut water serves as a natural hydrating and electrolyte-replenishing drink, which can be really helpful for maintaining your milk supply. It is low in calories and rich in potassium, making it a good alternative to sugary sports drinks. Drinking coconut water can aid in keeping you hydrated and energized, which is vital for supporting your breastfeeding journey.

Oat Water

Oatmeal is a known galactagogue – a substance that promotes lactation – and you can harness its power to boost your milk supply by making oat water. To prepare, soak one cup of oats in four cups of water overnight. In the morning, strain and drink the water throughout the day. You can also try incorporating oat milk into your diet in place of regular milk, or blending it into a smoothie, to enjoy the benefits of oats.

Malted Milk

Another helpful drink choice to boost your milk supply is malted milk. Malt is derived from grains and is rich in vitamins and minerals. By adding malted milk powder to warm milk, you can create a comforting beverage that may help with lactation. Consider enjoying a glass of malted milk in the evening to unwind and stimulate milk production for your breastfeeding journey.

Remember, it’s always a good idea to stay hydrated and maintain a balanced diet while breastfeeding. Along with these drink suggestions, be sure to consult with your healthcare provider or lactation consultant for additional advice on how to best support your milk supply and meet your baby’s nutritional needs.

new mom breastfeeding baby drinking herbal tea as one of the best drinks for breastfeeding moms

Drinks to Avoid While Breastfeeding

Breastfeeding moms should be cautious about their beverage choices, as some drinks may have a negative impact on the nursing baby. In this section, we will discuss three main types of drinks to avoid while breastfeeding: caffeine, alcohol, and sugary beverages.


As a breastfeeding mom, you may be tempted to drink caffeinated beverages for an energy boost, but it’s essential to limit your caffeine intake. High levels of caffeine can pass through breast milk and may affect your baby, causing irritability, fussiness, and sleep disturbances. 

Some examples of caffeinated drinks include:

  • Coffee
  • Black tea
  • Green tea
  • Energy drinks
  • Soda

To maintain a friendly tone and avoid issues like agitation or sleep deprivation in your baby, try to limit your caffeine consumption to no more than 300mg per day, which is approximately 2-3 cups of coffee. Opt for decaffeinated alternatives when possible, or consider switching to non-caffeinated beverages such as water, milk, or herbal tea.


Moderate alcohol consumption (up to 1 drink/day) is not known to be harmful to the infant. However, not drinking alcohol is the safest option for breastfeeding mothers, as it can pass through breast milk and potentially affect your baby’s development and sleep patterns. If you choose to consume alcohol occasionally, follow the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommendation to wait two or more hours before nursing to minimize the amount of alcohol in your breast milk. 

Examples of alcoholic drinks to avoid or limit include:

  • Wine
  • Beer
  • Spirits
  • Cocktails

Sugary Beverages

Lastly, it’s best to avoid high-sugar beverages while breastfeeding, as they provide little nutritional value and can contribute to weight gain and other health issues. Sugary drinks may also impact your baby’s taste preferences, leading to a higher preference for sweet flavors in the future. 

Some examples of sugary beverages include:

  • Soda
  • Fruit juices with added sugars
  • Sports drinks
  • Sweetened iced tea

Instead, opt for healthier drink choices such as water, unsweetened milk, or 100% fruit juices without added sugars. Remember to stay well-hydrated and choose beverages that positively contribute to your and your baby’s health and well-being.

new mom breastfeeding baby holding a coffee, which is not one of the best drinks for breastfeeding moms

Smoothie Recipes for Breastfeeding Moms

Green Goddess Lactation Smoothie

This smoothie is packed with fruits and vegetables to give you an energy boost and support your milk supply. To make this delicious drink, blend the following ingredients together:

  • 1 cup spinach or kale for an extra dose of nutrients
  • 1 banana for natural sweetness and a great source of potassium
  • 1 cup chopped frozen pineapple for added flavor and vitamin C
  • 2 tablespoons ground flaxseeds for fiber and healthy fats
  • 1 cup plain yogurt for a creamy texture and a calcium boost
  • 1/2 cup water or almond milk to achieve your desired consistency

Berry Bliss Lactation Smoothie

This colorful smoothie is perfect for getting in your daily dose of antioxidants from a variety of berries. To whip up this fruity delight, simply blend together the following ingredients:

  • 1 cup mixed frozen berries (such as strawberries, blueberries, and raspberries)
  • 1 banana to add potassium and naturally sweeten the drink
  • 1 cup spinach, packed and lightly steamed for easy blending
  • 1 cup almond milk for a light, dairy-free option
  • 1/4 cup almonds, soaked overnight or briefly microwaved, for added creaminess

Almond Banana Delight Lactation Smoothie

This simple smoothie combines the sweet flavors of almonds and bananas to create a satisfying treat. To make this delightful blend, follow these steps:

  • 1 cup unsweetened almond milk for a nutty flavor and added minerals
  • 1 banana for potassium and natural sweetness
  • 2 tablespoons almond butter for extra creaminess and protein
  • 1 tablespoon chia seeds for added fiber and omega-3s
  • Optional: 1/2 cup spinach for an extra boost of nutrients and beautiful green color
new mom breastfeeding baby

Frequently Asked Questions about the Best Drinks for Breastfeeding Moms

new mom breastfeeding baby with bottle of water in the foreground as one of the best drinks for breastfeeding mom

Cheers to the Best Drinks for Breastfeeding Moms

We hope this article has been helpful in guiding you towards the best drinks to keep you hydrated and healthy while breastfeeding. Remember, drinking enough fluids is essential for maintaining your milk supply and keeping your body functioning at its best.

Whether you prefer classic water, milk-based drinks, herbal teas, fruit juices, or smoothies, there are plenty of delicious and nutritious options to choose from. And with our tips and recipes, you can easily incorporate these drinks into your daily routine.

As always, it’s important to listen to your body and consult with your healthcare provider if you have any concerns or questions. But with a little bit of planning and preparation, you can stay hydrated and nourished while enjoying this special time with your little one.

So go ahead and raise a glass (or a mug or a bottle) to yourself and to all the amazing moms out there! Cheers!

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