Breast Milk

Erin - posted on 09/20/2009 ( 8 moms have responded )




How Can u tell if pumped breast milk has gone bad?


Rebecca - posted on 09/21/2009




Breastmilk will always seperate, the fat rising to the top and the more watery milk to the bottom. All you have to do is swirl it to mix the milk back up before freezing. Depending on how full your breasts are will make the milk look different. If you have full breasts you will have more "foremilk" and it will look more clear, or even blueish, less full breasts will give more of a thicker, more white milk because there is more "hindmilk" then "foremilk" but they will both seperate as well, with the clear or blueish milk you may notice more of the layers when it seperates.

Rebecca E, I can imagine that you must have cried when you had to dump all that milk!!!! I would have had a mental break down if I had to do that! Breastmilk is like liquid gold! I feel so bad just thinking of you having to do that! My freezer is sooo full of milk right now ( I probably have 400 oz or more) I have no idea if I will even use it. My daughter is EBF and I pump one breast every morning and yield about 6-7oz. So I fugure when she is 6 months and starts cereal I will just use that milk from the morning for her cereal so I have no idea when I would need the frozen stuff...I wish we had a milk bank or something here where I live that I could donate to. Im in Canada and there is only 2 banks that I know of that are too far from where I am. I just dont want it to go to waste knowing there are babies out there that could benifit from it.

Nicole - posted on 09/21/2009




If there is seriou doubt throw it out. If it hasn't been long, I would taste test it.

Rebecca - posted on 09/20/2009




I think it is so strange how there is so many different times for breastmilk out there. I go by LLL times: (This is for fresh pumped milk) 6hrs at room temp, 6-7 days in the fridge, 6 months in a fridge-freezer (not kept on the door and the freezer is seperate from the fridge), 12 months in a deep freeze (chest freezer)

Thawed milk must be used within 24hrs of thawing. Never re-warm previously thawed milk. You can tell if breastmilk has gone bad by the smell, if it smells sour it probably is, you can taste it to find out if needed. If you find that even fresh pumped milk within a few hours smells sour, tastes soapy, sour or rancid it can be due to too much lipase (an enzyme in milk) which breaks down the fats in the milk. Most babies do not mind a mild change in taste, and the milk is not harmful, but the stronger the taste the more likely that baby will reject it. If this is the case then newly expressed milk can be stored by heating the milk to a scald to inactivate the lipase and stop the process of fat digestion. Scald the milk as soon after expression as possible. To scald milk: * Heat milk to about 180 F (82 C), or until you see little bubbles around the edge of the pan (not to a full, rolling boil). * Quickly cool and store the milk. Scalding the milk will destroy some of the antiinfective properties of the milk and may lower some nutrient levels, but this is not likely to be an issue unless all of the milk that baby is receiving has been heat-treated.


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Rebecca - posted on 09/20/2009




I go with the last Rebecca... Although I always thought breastmilk was only good for 2 days in the fridge and if I forgot to tray it and freeze it I threw it out!! I wish I'd known it lasted longer back then. My husband also left the freezer door open once (just a little bit) and thawed my massive supply of breast milk. I cried A LOT when I was tipping it down the sink :(
The milk in the fridge always looks a little odd. It goes white (like cows milk) and seperates slightly. Towards the end of breast feeding when your milk supply isn't so great it tends to stay clear with a little bit of white in it.

Charlotte - posted on 09/20/2009




According to this: human milk is safe for 10 hours at room temperature, 8 days in the fridge, and 6-12 months in a deep freeze. It's a good informational link and I recomend you read the whole page as it will probably answer most other questions you might have about pumped breastmilk.

Tawnya - posted on 09/20/2009




I agree with the above. It's best to date the breastmilk before putting it in the fridge. It's usually good 6-8 days in the fridge and 2-3 months in your freezer.

Jodi - posted on 09/20/2009




I agree with Patsy, I don't take the chance. But, I do know this, breastmilk can stay at room temp for two hours, 2 days in the fridge, 6 weeks in the freezer part of a fridge and 6 months in a chest freezer. Always remember that you can't refreeze it though, it needs to be used as soon as possible.

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