12+ different uses for breast milk
Breastmilk is one of those amazing things that we may likely never fully understand or know how to utilize and there are so many differed uses for breastmilk. Many lactating people are surprised to find out just how much they can do with breastmilk besides nursing their baby or pumping to feed their baby a bottle. These are just some of the amazing uses for breastmilk to get you started with making the most of this valuable resource.
Food uses for breast milk
Pumped breastmilk can be used for feeding your baby in bottles but there are several other great times you can use breastmilk as your baby grows.
Breastmilk can be used to mix baby cereals when your baby starts eating foods. This is a great way to add a flavor that your baby already enjoys to their cereal to encourage them to eat it.
Like mixing baby cereals breastmilk can be used for watering down baby purees, homemade or store-bought, that are too thick. Simply spoon a small amount of breastmilk into the baby food and stir until combined and until it reaches the consistency you’re looking for.
Make popsicles for your baby. Using one of those net baby feeders you can use breast milk in an ice cube tray to make popsicles for your baby to enjoy on a hot summer day or for helping with teething pain.
Bath and body uses for breastmilk
Breastmilk is great for the skin. Many mothers have forgotten their milk in the back of the fridge for a few days too long or find themselves with old freezer burnt milk in the freezer long after they have weaned their babies. This milk doesn’t have to be tossed out. It can be used to make a skin-soothing milk bath that is great for healing rashes and sunburns.
Your baby isn’t the only one that can benefit from breastmilk. If you find yourself with an abundance of milk that can not be used for deeding you can make a bar soap similar to how you make goats milk soap that is great for stretch marks and cellulite.
You can also use chilled breastmilk to help with dark undereye circles from the lack of sleep that comes with having a newborn.
Health uses for breastmilk
Breastmilk, particularly the colostrum that is produced in the early days before your milk comes in, is an amazing source of antivirals, antibiotics, and even antibodies for illnesses you have immunity to. This milk makes breastmilk an amazing way to help your baby recover if they should get sick. This is one of the main reasons NICU parents are encouraged to pump milk for their babies or use donor milk.
Breastmilk can act like your baby’s first lotion. Babies often get dry flaky skin in the first couple of weeks of life. This is completely normal but some baby lotions are full of chemicals that can be bad for your baby, and sometimes your baby’s skin is extra sensitive and the thought of buying and trying out multiple types and brands of lotions can be overwhelming. Breastmilk’s high-fat content and healing properties make it a great alternative to commercial lotions for your baby.
Breastmilk has been scientifically proven to kill germs and is often used to help heal cuts and scrapes. Many moms keep syringes of breastmilk with just a tiny bit in the freezer for this and other health uses.
Ear infections are a common problem in kids and many doctors are encouraging mothers to help their children heal without antibiotics that have created resistant bacteria due to once overuse. A few small drops in an infected ear can help speed healing and help avoid the use of antibiotics in mild cases. Often the problem can be solved overnight.
Sunburns are no fun but breastmilk’s natural pain-relieving and healing properties make chilled breastmilk a great treatment for sunburns. No one wants to find themselves with an accidentally sun-burned toddler but it does happen from time to time and using breastmilk can help soothe their skin so they heal faster.
The healing and inflammation-reducing properties of breastmilk make it perfect for helping treat and soothe rashes. For children that are extra sensitive to things like fragrances in soaps and detergents, this can be a great tool for helping keep your baby comfortable. You can even use breastmilk to treat a diaper rash.
Other uses for breastmilk
If you are blessed to have an abundant milk supply you can donate the excess milk to help mothers that are not so lucky provide for their babies. Milk donation is a great way to help others when you are blessed with more than you need.
Don’t know where to start with milk donation? Facebook groups “Eats on Feets [your state here]”, and “Human Milk for Human Babies [your city/state]” are two great places to check. These are groups local to you with parents and caregivers both looking for milk donations and offering extra milk. It’s a very cool feeling to know that your extra breastmilk can help feed and nourish another child and help out another family.
Additionally, there are more broad options for milk donation. Organizations like milkbank.org, hmbana.org, and more take breast milk donations from screened donors. The process is very simple – a phone interview to make sure you’re a candidate, some may also do a written interview as well. After the interview, you will be scheduled for a blood draw to confirm you don’t have any communicable diseases that could be passed through your breast milk. Some of these national milk banks will even pay you to donate, as well as supply you with all the supplies you’ll need for donating.
Speaking of getting paid for breast milk, another option to use up all of that milk if you can not donate it is to sell it. As strange as it sounds cancer patients and even bodybuilders are known to use breastmilk. The protein and antibodies in breastmilk are both amazing for the body and can aid in recovery.
Use some to make breastmilk jewelry. To help remember your early day with your baby you can have jewelry made from your breastmilk. You can find amazing crafters on Etsy that can help create a one-of-a-kind piece for you to cherish for a lifetime.
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