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I mean if I keep on eating food every two hours, will I produce more milk? OR If I eat less food will the milk supply decrease?

Actually, I am a thin girlie with very less appetite (height: 5 feet 5 cm' weight: 52 KG), so I was wondering if my quantity of food intake might be one of the reason of less milk production?

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answers with references will be appreciated –  TheIndependentAquarius Sep 11 '13 at 5:57
    
I think water helps but not so much food. I don't have an exact reference, but just wanted to recommend "The Breastfeeding Mother's Guide To Making More Milk" by Diana West (amazon.com/Breastfeeding-Mothers-Guide-Making-More/dp/…). I'm pretty sure it discusses this, and also explains many factors that can effect milk supply and how to help increase supply. I read it several years ago and found it very useful. –  Mama Sep 14 '13 at 5:14
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4 Answers

The single biggest factor affecting milk production is how much milk your baby drinks.

Yes, at extremes, you need to enough body hydration to be able to produce milk, but your body reacts to your baby's feeding habits. If the baby doesn't take much, your milk production will slow; if your baby takes large quantities of milk then your body will increase milk production.

So best plan: keep well hydrated, eat healthy foods with all the vitamins you may need, and your body will produce the right amount of milk for your baby.

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A 2011 article in the journal Clinical Lactation (Mohrbacher, Nancy. The Magic Number and Long-Term Milk Production, Vol 2-1, 15-18) explains the physiology behind breast milk production, which is dependent on breast fullness and breast storage capacity.

Fullness

Full breasts make milk slower. You want to nurse (or express) before your breasts are full.

Drained breasts make milk faster. Encourage baby to nurse fully, or express what's left to empty the breast more throughly.

Capacity

The amount of milk that can be stored by the breast is not related to breast size but rather to the amount of room in the milk-making glands. Capacity affects how long it takes for the breast to become full. A woman with larger capacity can go longer between feedings without cuasing milk production to slow.

Magic Number

Mother needs to find the magic number of milk removals needed to keep milk production stable - an issue especially for mothers who are expressing. The number of breastfeedings per day should be fairly stable for the first 6 months, reducing as solid foods are introduced. 8 times per day is average; an individual mother's number may be more or less than this depending on her capacity.

The myth of Increased Fluids

While one should certainly avoid dehydration, studies like this one from 1985 ( Dusdieker et al, Effect of Supplemental Fluids on Human Milk Production, Journal of Pediatrics) demonstrate that increasing fluid intake does not affect breast milk production.

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No. Breast milk production will increase with the amount of liquid that you're consuming. Rule of thumb: the more liquid you take, more milk you will have. However, if you reduce significantly the amount of food, the milk might have less nutrients. The key is keeping your feed balanced.

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Though total amount of food do not affect amount of milk created, yet some kinds of food increase milk production. For example: green leaves (fennel, parsley leaves, lettuce), almonds.

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