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Best Books On Breastfeeding

Breast plus baby equals well-fed, right? Not always. Even though nursing your newborn may seem like it should come naturally, this doesn’t always happen. And, this is where the best books for breastfeeding parents come in!

According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), in 2019 slightly over 83 percent of infants started out breastfeeding at least some of the time. By one month, this number drops to 78.6 percent, and by six months, the number falls to 55.8 percent.

Along with support from a lactation pro, these books can help you to learn more about everything from getting the just-right latch to pumping and soothing engorged breasts. So if you’re not sure where to start, are struggling to feed your little one, or are ready to throw in the towel, read on for the best books to check out.


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Support for breastfeeding matters

You aren’t alone. The CDC’s stats show that 60 percent of mothers don’t nurse their babies as long as they thought they would. Factors such as lactation issues, latching, concerns about baby’s nutrition/weight, and unsupportive work policies are top obstacles that interfere with breastfeeding.

Support for breastfeeding is important enough for the U.S. Surgeon General issued a “call to action.” This includes actions for nursing mothers, the families of nursing mothers, communities, healthcare providers, and employers to take. Without the right support, it’s easy to feel lost or give up when breastfeeding doesn’t go well.

The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) highlights the importance of breastfeeding and recommends that mothers exclusively nurse their infants for the first six months. While this isn’t always possible, the AAP does note that nursing can help to reduce the risks of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS), lower respiratory infections, tooth decay, and diabetes.

The more support a mother has, the more likely it is that she will continue breastfeeding – giving baby these, and potentially other, benefits.

The advice on BabyGaga is not a substitute for consulting with a medical professional or treatment for a specific condition. This information should not be used to diagnose or treat a health problem without consulting a qualified professional. Please contact your healthcare provider with any questions or concerns.

What to look for when buying a book on breastfeeding

All breastfeeding books are not created equally. While these books can help to support your nursing journey, finding the right one is the first step. Before you choose one book, consider:

Your personal preferences

Do you prefer a book with a witty, humorous tone? Are you looking for a lengthy book that has chapters and chapters of detailed info? Does a quick read better suit your needs? Do you like a casual, friendly style or writing – or would you prefer something that sounds like a doctor wrote it? Think about your personal preferences before you dig deep into your next nursing book pick.

Where the info comes from

Anyone can write a book. But this doesn’t mean every book has expert info. Consider the source! Look for books written by experts in the field. This could include a professional lactation consultant, a doctor, or a well-known organization/association.

The specific content

Some breastfeeding mamas may need help with a specific aspect of nursing. Whether it’s latch, pumping at work, nipple care, or anything else that you’re struggling with, make sure the book either focuses on the subject or – at the very least – includes plenty of information about it.

Photos or illustrations

Pictures can help you to better understand the techniques a book describes. If written recommendations don’t cut it for you, choose a book with step-by-step or detailed images.

Here are a few of our favorite books on breastfeeding:


Lactivate!: A User’s Guide to Breastfeeding

Best How-To Images

$15 $17 Save $2

Lactivate!: A User’s Guide to Breastfeeding by Jill Krause and Chrisie Rosenthal is a 194-page book that covers everything new moms need to know about nursing.


  • Includes illustrated images
  • Has an FAQ section
  • Price

Co-authored by International Board of Lactation Consultant Examiners (IBCLC) Lactation Consultant Chrisie Rosenthal and writer Jill Krause, Lactivate! A User’s Guide to Breastfeeding includes just about everything you need to know about nursing your new baby. And, it comes with illustrated how-to pictures. Bonus – these pics make it easy to understand the info included and can help you to feel more confident in your breastfeeding journey.

Readers praise the easy-to-understand style of the book, with one noting, “I liked the formatting and no nonsense tone.” This book has a straightforward structure with sections on the first 90 days, an FAQ, and so much more!

ina may

Ina May’s Guide to Breastfeeding: From the Nation’s Leading Midwife

Best Comprehensive Guide to Breastfeeding

$13 $20 Save $7

Ina May’s Guide to Breastfeeding: From the Nation’s Leading Midwife is a 352-page comprehensive option that includes topics ranging from the benefits of nursing baby to weaning.


  • Written by a professional midwife
  • Includes a wide variety of topics
  • Price

  • Longer book ? over 350 pages

Whether you want to learn more about nursing when you return to work, the benefits of breastfeeding, weaning your kiddo, or just about anything else having to do with lactation, Ina May’s Guide to Breastfeeding: From the Nation’s Leading Midwife is the book for you! This comprehensive pick includes just about anything a soon-to-be or new mom would want to learn about breastfeeding, pumping, and feeding infants.

Founder of the Farm Midwifery Center, author Ina May Gaskin is an expert in the field. Gaskin creates a full package here – giving you the information necessary to nurse with confidence. While the book was written well over a decade ago, it’s still relevant, realistic, and helpful! Real-life readers rave about the author’s “realistic view of women returning to work and continuing to breastfeed.” So, if you have concerns about pumping while you’re away from your newborn or other nursing/work-related issues, this book may help.

eat to feed book

Eat to Feed: 80 Nourishing Recipes for Breastfeeding

Best Book About Nutrition

$20 $25 Save $5

Eat to Feed: 80 Nourishing Recipes for Breastfeeding is a 224-page resource that can help new moms to learn more about eating while nursing.


  • Plenty of healthy recipes
  • Tips on nutrition while nursing
  • Photographs of the foods

  • Not a guide on breastfeeding

What should you eat while nursing? Eat to Feed: 80 Nourishing Recipes for Breastfeeding, by Eliza Larson and Kristy Kohler, is packed with ideas! This popular pick scores high marks for the variety of options and the food photography.

Look for more than just a few meals here. You’ll find breakfast, lunch, and dinner recipes along with snacks, desserts (because you need a treat too!), and beverage recipes. If you’re not sure what the healthiest foods are or just want to learn more about nutrition and breastfeeding, this book has info on milk-boosting ingredients, tips for meal prep, ideas for sourcing healthy foods, and plenty of support.

breast book

Breast Book Ever

Best Newer Release Breastfeeding Book

Published in 2023, the 120-page Breast Book Ever (by Mackenzie Brown) is a newer guide.


  • Shorter book/easier to read
  • Written by a Certified Nurse Midwife (CNM)
  • Includes pages for note-taking

  • Not as comprehensive as some of the other books on breastfeeding

You don’t have time to read a War and Peace-length book on nursing. Whether you’re still pregnant or just gave birth, time is precious right now – and for the foreseeable future too! Enter the Breast Book Ever. At well under 150 pages, this book won’t take weeks or months to work through. Instead, it will give you an intro to breastfeeding clearly, concisely, and conveniently.

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Authored by a CNM with plenty of experience in the subject, this book provides info on the benefits of breastfeeding, latch, the proper positions, challenges, diet/nutrition, and more. It also includes helpful illustrations and space to take notes.

working mom book

Work. Pump. Repeat: The New Mom’s Survival Guide to Breastfeeding and Going Back to Work

Best Book for Working Moms

$16 $20 Save $4

Work. Pump. Repeat: The New Mom’s Survival Guide to Breastfeeding and Going Back to Work by Jessica Shortall is a 208-page book for women who need support nursing, pumping, and working at the same time.


  • Focused on challenges that the working mom may experience
  • Includes a humorous tone
  • Plenty of practical advice

  • Not a comprehensive guide for all breastfeeding mothers

So, you’re headed back to work? Now what? Jessica Shortall’s Work. Pump. Repeat: The New Mom’s Survival Guide to Breastfeeding and Going Back to Work is the book you may need right now. This guide can help you navigate your work-life return while still nursing your baby.

This popular pick includes much-needed info on, “what to bring to work when you pack your pump bag, how to handle different disasters, traveling and pumping, and so much more.” Instead of a matter-of-fact tone, the author gives you a witty, humor-packed book that doesn’t candy-coat the demands on breastfeeding as a working mom.

guide book

The First-Time Mom’s Breastfeeding Handbook

Best Value

The First-Time Mom’s Breastfeeding Handbook, by Chrisie Rosenthal, is an 188-page guide to nursing your baby from a professional lactation consultant.


  • Written by a lactation consultant
  • Information on mental health
  • Price

  • Not as long/comprehensive as some of the other books

Wouldn’t you like to have a lactation consultant in your home at all times? While The First-Time Mom’s Breastfeeding Handbook might not give you that level of guidance, it’s the next best thing. Written by a pro in the field, this guide features practical advice and step-by-step information that can help you to overcome challenges and nurse your kiddo!

Don’t worry about complicated language or jargon. Even though this book is written by an expert, readers note, “Chrisie Rosenthal’s guide is an incredibly approachable and digestible support to anyone learning this new and important skill.” Not only does this book provide you with the steps it takes to succeed month-by-month, it also has info on how to protect your mental health and self-care.


Latch: A Handbook for Breastfeeding with Confidence at Every Stage

Best Confidence-Building Breastfeeding Book

$14 $18 Save $4

Latch: A Handbook for Breastfeeding with Confidence at Every Stage is a 166-page book by Robin Kaplan and Abby Theuring.


  • Written by a lactation expert
  • Stage-by-stage approach
  • Price

  • Some information may not apply to every mom

Written by International Board-Certified Lactation Consultant Robin Kaplan, Latch: A Handbook for Breastfeeding with Confidence at Every Stage can help you to navigate nursing. The stage-by-stage approach starts with issues that can creep up early on (such as latching and positions), moves on to lifestyle changes (such as returning to work), and finishes with weaning your baby.

If you’re looking for a constant companion that provides plenty of info about what is happening right now and what’s to come, this is the choice for you. Along with expert insights, you’ll also get IRL breastfeeding stories from other moms, guidelines for storing breast milk. And, readers praise the way this book, “gives you the basics for every stage of breastfeeding in a non-judgmental and fact based sort of way.”

sleep and nursing

Sweet Sleep: Nighttime and Naptime Strategies for the Breastfeeding Family

Best Book About Breastfeeding and Sleep

$17 $22 Save $5

Sweet Sleep: Nighttime and Naptime Strategies for the Breastfeeding Family is a Le Leche League International book about breastfeeding at night and handling naptimes. This almost-five star book is 512 pages.


  • Authored by the La Leche League International
  • Focuses specifically on sleep times
  • Price

You need sleep. But you have a newborn who needs to nurse. The La Leche League International’s Sweet Sleep: Nighttime and Naptime Strategies for the Breastfeeding Family can help! This book features a Quick Start guide that may just make an immediate difference in how your kiddo sleeps. You’ll also get a Safe Sleep Seven checklist, info about sleep by age and stage, and plenty of guidance to help you breastfeed through it all!

This book scores high marks from breastfeeding parents who need real help for their sleep needs, “If you’re a postpartum momma or papa looking to get some sleep, follow the 7 steps and get some rest! Followed these recommendations and have never looked back!!” Unlike other info about nursing, this popular option’s sleep focus goes above and beyond some of the more general titles.


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Online support for breastfeeding

Yes, books can help you to learn more about or feel more comfortable with breastfeeding. But they aren’t the only resource. There’s also plenty of support online. Like the printed version, make sure that the info comes from an authoritative, expert source. The U.S. Office on Women’s Health, La Leche League International, the International Lactation Consultant Association, and the USDA’s WIC Breastfeeding Support page.

Along with information from these types of organizations, you can also find online support from other mothers who have been there, done that. Online forums, Facebook communities, and other similar groups provide direct answers to your questions, emotional support, and the chance to share your challenges with other people who are going through (or have gone through) the same thing.

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