Reviewed through Julie Matheney (MS, CCC-SLP, CLEC, IBCLC) composed by swati patwal (M.Sc. (Food & Nutrition), CDE) October 5, 2021

Signs describe The chest Milk has Gone BadSigns describe The breast Milk has Gone Bad Signs indicating The chest Milk has Gone Bad

Stored chest milk looks and also smells different from fresh expressed or pumped breast milk. Some parents describe the taste and also smell as “soapy” and others as “metallic.” The perceptions may vary, however do these transforms mean that chest milk has actually spoiled? If not, just how would someone tell if breast milk has actually gone bad? learning the answer to these questions can ensure safe feeding and also minimal milk wastage.

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Read on come know indicators that indicate that breast milk has actually gone bad and also ways to protect against it.

Signs describe The breast Milk has actually Gone Bad

Breast milk’s taste and smell vary from one mommy to another. Therefore, discovering the common signs describe milk spoilage can prevent friend from feeding your baby spoiled milk.


Here space some means you deserve to determine milk’s fitness because that consumption.

1. Appearance

Upon storage, breast milk frequently separates into two class — milk and cream layer. The fat rises come the top to type the cream layer, when the bottom great is referred to as the milk class (1).

When milk is tho fit because that consumption, a rapid swirl causes the layers come dissolve (2). However, if your breast milk shows up chunky or maintains different layers even after swirling a couple of times, the milk has actually likely gone bad.


2. Smell

Breast milk’s odor can vary amongst mothers and also even throughout feeding sessions. These transforms are based on several factors, such together the mummy diet and medications. Besides, an turn off or soapy odor is a relatively common event for mothers v high lipase-containing breast milk (3). In such a case, identify spoilage isn’t easy. However, a straightforward test can help.

For the test, freeze a little amount the your breast milk because that a week. After ~ a week, thaw the milk and also check the scent.


If you have actually high lipase milk, your milk will most likely smell soapy, metallic, or fishy. However, the milk is fit for the baby’s consumption. You can deactivate lipase activity by scalding chest milk.If the milk smells cake or rancid, the milk has undergone chemical oxidation. Discarding such milk is advisable. A diet wealthy in PUFA or rancid fats and also water containing totally free copper and also iron ion could reason oxidation, giving a strange smell to breast milk.

3. Taste

If breast milk tastes rancid or sour, it has likely unable to do bad. You have the right to perform the exact same test as above — save the milk because that a week and also evaluate the taste changes. Soapy-, metallic-, or fishy-tasting chest milk is likely because of high lipase activity. On the other hand, a cake or rancid taste indicates chemical oxidation.


In general, chest milk stored longer than recommended may show that milk might have unable to do bad. Freshly pumped or expressed milk save on computer in the refrigerator for an ext than 4 days or previously frozen and thawed milk save on computer for much more than a job are most likely to go bad (4).

What Happens once A baby Consumes Spoiled chest Milk?

You may sometimes not recognize that your stored breast milk has actually gone bad. In such instances, inadvertently feeding of spoiled milk is possible. A baby might exhibit the complying with signs when they ingest spoiled chest milk.


Some various other symptoms that might arise as result of spoiled milk consumption are dehydration leading to too much sleepiness and also inactivity, dark-colored urine, and also fewer wet nappies than usual. If you suspect your infant has any kind of health issues and also related signs because of breast milk consumption, top a pediatrician because that guidance.

Tips To protect against Expressed/Pumped chest Milk from Spoiling

Below space the recommended guidelines come express or pump and also store chest milk to maintain its quality (4) (8).

Wash your hands and also breasts through clean water and soap before pumping or expressing breast milk.Adequately clean and sanitize your chest pump and accessories, including the storage containers after every use.Discard the chest pump and also its accessories if you notification a mold in their tubing or the devices looks worn out.
Tightly close the storage party or container’s lid so that the milk is safe from chemical oxidation and absorption of smell from various other veggies and fruit.Thaw chest milk in stimulate of storage, meaning thaw oldest breast milk first. Don’t refreeze thawed chest milk.Check stored breast milk because that spoilage prior to feeding it come the baby. You might do therefore by checking the taste, color, and also consistency of the breast milk.
Never save breast milk in the door that the refrigerator. Location the milk container at the ago of the refrigerator wherein the temperature is coldest and stable because it is unaffected by the door’s opening and also closing.Place the warehouse container in an insulated cooler bag or cool towel for a few minutes if you cannot instantly place that in the refrigerator. Fresh expressed or pumped chest milk deserve to stay consumable in ~ 60 come 85°F (16 to 29°C) because that up to 4 hours. Remember, the much longer the milk stays outside, the greater the possibilities of the going rancid.Keep the chest milk away from straight sunlight, heat, and also air until you save it in the frozen refrigerator or freezer.Avoid untreated insanity water usage for cleaning of breast milk storage equipment to prevent milk’s chemical oxidation during storage. Girlfriend may also restrict supplements wealthy in unsaturated fats, such together fish oil tablets, if your chest milk is perceptible to oxidation and goes rancid easily.

You invest significant time and effort in pumping chest milk and also storing the safely. Mothers carry out this to feed chest milk to your babies even when they space not around. Understanding the signs that suggest breast milk spoilage can help assure your efforts are payment off. Besides, it avoids unnecessary milk wastage that frequently happens as soon as mothers or caregivers misidentify breast milk together spoiled.

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References:
lasignoralaura.com"s short articles are composed after assessing the research works of experienced authors and also institutions. Our references consist of resources established by authorities in their respective fields. You have the right to learn more about the authenticity of the details we present in ours editorial policy.
1. Breast Milk safety and security Storage; Oakland County, Michigan 2. Storing person Milk; La Leche League worldwide 3. Milk Issues; La Leche League global 4. Appropriate Storage and Preparation of chest Milk; CDC 5. Bottle Refusal; IABLE 6. Madhura Sundararajan et al.; note from the Field: Cronobacter sakazakii Meningitis in a Full-Term Neonate Fed solely with breast Milk — Indiana, 2018; NCBI 7. Rowena McMullan et al.; Cronobacter sakazakii epidemic from Expressed chest Milk, Australia; NCBI 8. Pumping and storing breastmilk; U.S room of Health and Human Services


Julie Matheney did her Master"s degree in speech-language pathology and also has operated on feeding and also swallowing disorders for end a decade. As component of a hospital-based rehabilitation team, she works on helping children to feed and also swallow. Having worked in the NICU, she found her passion for breastfeeding and became an IBCLC in 2017. She transitioned the end of the hospital... More

Swati Patwal is a clinical nutritionist and also toddler mommy with over eight years of suffer in varied fields that nutrition. She started her career together a CSR task coordinator for a healthy and balanced eating and energetic lifestyle task catering to college children. Then she functioned as a nutrition faculty and clinical nutrition coach in various organizations. Her interest in clinical writing... More