Saturday, October 2, 2010

Malunggay madness

I'm exclusively breastfeeding Vito. That means all his nutritional needs come from my milk--no supplemental formula, no water, no oral vitamins. I can't say breastfeeding is the best experience in the world, though. Sometimes I feel suffocated by always having to stay within hollering distance from Vito. But most times, I'm glad that my milk is his sole source of sustenance (alliteration!).

To help me make milk, I drink a lot of water. I also eat this:
Chicken in malunggay broth 
Malunggay or moringa is a tree that grows just about anywhere that's warm. I grew up with this tree right outside my window. Its pretty oval leaves are rich in calcium, iron, phosphorus and Vitamins A, B and C--stuff Vito needs to grow strong and healthy! I also eat ice cream to fatten up my milk hehe.

This dish is very easy to make. Just saute garlic, onions and tomatoes. Add the chicken. Add water (or chicken broth) to cover the chicken and cook through. Season to taste. Turn off the heat and add the malunggay leaves to the pot. Serve!

My only problem with this malunggay dish is that I eat it almost every day. Yep, maybe 3-4 times a week. Great for my milk production but for me, personally? I'm tired of it!

I tried the moringa pills but I'm allergic to them. Ya, like my skin was unbearably itchy for 3 weeks. I thought I was going to go insane! I almost scratched my skin off. That was such agony, I tell you. So no moringa pills. Instead, if you're a breastfeeding mama, please tell me what kinds of food increase milk production and how to cook them. Thanks!


  1. Tortang malunggay, malunggay burger, tinola with sili (and malunggay) :)

  2. Halaan! Just hours after taking halaan (clam soup) I'd have enough milk to pump and feed. This was great so I was able to have a milk bank for the times I needed a break or daddy wanted to feed or for when you go back to work.

  3. I am a Filipina living in France. Since the French haven't heard of malunggay or halaan (which everyone from Manila kept telling me to consume), I just ate a lot of mussels. It somehow worked ... my son is almost 14 months and I'm still breastfeeding him. The name of the mussel dish I kept eating is moules gratinées.

  4. What worked for me were:
    1. Lots of water
    2. Lots of sleep
    3. Eating a "protein-y" meal at least once a day (Like, for lunch, I'll eat different sources of protein, like tofu, meat and lots of dark green veggies and malunggay. Eat red rice instead of white.
    4. I agree with RONE, mollusks are great. Just be sure they're fresh. Try making a vongole with them.
    5. Mince the malunggay and add it to garlic rice or an Asian fried rice.
    6. I like making malunggay garlic bread: Take a baguette, slice down the middle lengthwise and spread a mixture of minced dried garlic, minced malunggay (be generous!) and butter. Toast til the butter melts and serve it with a nice steak salad.
    7. I love this: Make a refreshing malunggay iced tea by infusing the crushed or minced leaves in water. Steep til brown. Add honey or muscovado, and some calamansi juice. Serve ice cold.
    8. You can try Mother's Milk by Traditional Medicinals at Healthy Options. I take this up to now, and it seems to work. :)

  5. Cook tahong if you know it then add malunggay leaves. That's what my Mom did when she was still pregnant!

  6. I agree with Rone! Take oatmeal too. Have you tried other brands of malunggay pills? Or fenugreek perhaps?

  7. Rone beat me to this...she's right, Halaan soup! :))) though i never ate any malunggay dish, just enough liquids, soupy dishes (like clam and lapu-lapu soups) and frequent b-feeding will help you produce more.
    In a pot, sautee clean fresh clams in some ginger slices, tomatoes and onions, pinch of salt, then pour hot water. Leave to boil for a few minutes, then slurp! :) Enjoy and happy breastfeeding!

  8. Try fenugreek in healthy options. If I spelled it right.. hehe.. it increases milk supply also..

  9. try malunggay pesto (with loads of garlic, Parmesan and kasoy nuts (if pine nuts are not available)).

    My mom told me to cook halaan (clams). just sauté ginger, onion, add the clams then water then wait for the shells can also add malunggay leaves there...

    yes, keeping yourself well hydrated is very good. :)

  10. you might like to read
    I find her blog so helpful...hope it helps.

  11. Hi frances! I tried drinking Mother's Milk Tea that can be bought at healthy options. I dont drink it everyday but my milk supply went up after drinking, i can feel my breasts full after a few hours of drinking it. You may want to try it ü

    -- appledumplings

  12. I don't know much about breastfeeding and those written above looks really helpful. :)

    as for malunggay, i have this malunggay powder from Herb's Best from Echo Store. I just mix it with everything I cook, on my smoothies etc. :)

    see you soon!!

  13. I miss bfeeding after I read your most. When my little girl was, well... little, I had tinola twice a week, sinigang, nilaga, halaan (when seafoods permit) and everything had malunggay leaves in them. Although I couldn't supply a lot, as most moms do, I was happy I was able to bfeed for some time.

    Just lots of fluid, was what I was told. Be it in soup kind, plain water, fruit juices... as long as you have plenty of them and with fresh fruits :) Good luck and I hope you enjoy this journey!

    ~~ Kat ~~
    My Tots Exactly!
    My Tummy Calls

  14. thanks DeBI for the referral. I have an entire post on increasing milk supply -
    hope this helps :D
    kudos on your determination to breastfeed.

  15. Wow, Neighbor, pati water? How come?:) So okay lang no water?


This is all pretty new to me so please feel free to share your mommy wisdom!