Sunday, August 11, 2013

Simple Solutions: Molasses for Iron Deficiency and Anemia

Mothers often ask me if molasses is a galactagogue, that is, if it increases milk supply.

The easy answer is yes--it provides a source of minerals that nourish and support your body in making more milk. 

However, as with all vitamins and supplements, molasses alone is not a substitute for a good diet.

Mothers today affirm that BLACKSTRAP molasses is helpful for lactation.

But historically, I've found only one source that documents the use of molasses specifically to boost supply--from a 19th century United States cookbook.

Blackstrap molasses is the mineral rich sap of the sugar cane--the part that is removed so that sugar can be perfectly white, denuded, as it were, of its true mineral content. The minerals appear to be easy to absorb, as molasses is famous for increasing iron levels in iron-depleted mothers, for diminishing fatigue and preventing the onset of full-fledged anemia. See my article about anemia, and this article for more suggestions on how to build iron for more information.

Our nerves depend upon the electric conductivity of minerals to function well, as do all the cell walls of all the cells in the body. We are truly a "Body Electric."

Of course, nerves are involved in lactation. For instance, through the stimulation of the nerves in the nipple, the pituitary produces prolactin, a hormone of lactation.

Everyone understands that we need a balance of "electrolytes" in our blood -- tiniest "mineral salts" that keep our blood "electric," and that provide the nerves and cell walls with plenty of super-conducting minerals.

Lactogenic foods and herbs to the rescue! Many are extremely rich in minerals--as is thick, slightly bitter blackstrap molasses. Sports drinks are not a good solution, as some contain toxic food coloring, plus they do not serve up the complete palate of nutrients and micro-nutrients found in food.

To the extent that blackstrap molasses provides iron and helps build blood cells, it also participates in the oxygenation of the body--including of course of the mammary glands. The body functions better if there is plenty of blood supplying oxygen and nutrients to all the cells.

Personally, I have had excellent experiences with blackstrap molasses, and very positive feedback from mothers who use it. (Obviously, however, if you are avoiding any and all potent sources of sugar, you will want to avoid molasses as well.)

How to use it--one to two tablespoons a day. I like to dilute a heaping teaspoon (or more) of blackstrap molasses in a cup of boiled water, and add in raw milk or Half & Half. It tastes somewhat like a rich, bitter-sweet coffee, and is a nice coffee substitute.


  1. Thank you for leaving a comment, for your hooray. I followed to your blogsite, and have been very moved and sorrowed. Blessings to your family. Yes, yay for wonderful little joys like molasses.