What the heck is wrong with my milk????? (x-posted in BF) - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 9 Old 04-18-2010, 12:04 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I've been pumping for the last 3 weeks or so in preparation to go back to work in June. Tonight I went out for a while and my husband gave Miranda a bottle of pumped milk. She didn't drink much of it, hubby said she "refused" it at first, then drank about an ounce. I had just nursed her before I left so she may not have been hungry--I was only gone for an hour. She's taken 2 bottles in the past without any issues. When I got home I was looking at the bottle and noticed the top of the milk had a yellow-ish film on it. I thought it looked suspicious, so I tasted it and it tasted NASTY! Tasted the way that spit-up smells, although the milk didn't look curdled. I pumped it at the end of March, it went straight into the freezer and straight into the bottle after being defrosted.

I did some research and thought maybe it was a lipase problem....then just to compare, I tasted some freshly pumped milk and while it didn't taste quite as sour, it was similar. What gives? I thought milk was supposed to be sweet? Is it something I'm eating?

Do you think this could be a lipase problem? If it is, should I assume that all the other milk in the freezer is affected? (close to 50 ounces, I would be sooooo sad to have to dump it!!) Does the yellow color have anything to do with it? Should I start scalding before freezing just to be safe?

Any advice is so, so appreciated!! TIA!

Amy, proud Mama to my girls Natalie (12/7/06) and Miranda (2/9/10).
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#2 of 9 Old 04-18-2010, 12:23 AM
 
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hmm. i am not sure i am qualified to answer. don't dump your saved milk yet. my first guess was the lipase issue. next, did you work out prior? sometimes that can make it taste sour. sorry mama. maybe just a one time thing. did you taste any of the other frozen samples? kind of like a spot check and see if different?

married to my love , in love with MJ born 1/18/10 and PJ born 4/6/12 waterbirth.jpg and now due with a surprise 11/14!
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#3 of 9 Old 04-18-2010, 02:23 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks....I'm not sure I could spot check it without defrosting the whole bag, which would then have to be used within 24 hours. Do you think I could break a chunk of frozen milk off without contaminating the whole bag?

I think one plan would be to start scalding the milk before I freeze it....as if pumping weren't enough of a pita by itself, argh!!!!! But it's worth it to have the milk saved. If I keep the milk I have now, I can always defrost that first, test it and toss it if necessary. DH said she did drink some of it....what I read about lipase said that although it tastes bad, it isn't actually rancid or anything. So I guess if the babe drinks it, it's okay? I don't want the taste of the milk turning her off to bottles all together. Cause I do have to go back to work in June, so I need her to be okay with bottles.

I do sometimes workout after the babe goes to sleep and then pump after...I'm not sure when else in the day I could do either. Sigh. I guess I can try to workout earlier in the day and see if that makes a difference.

Thanks!!

Amy, proud Mama to my girls Natalie (12/7/06) and Miranda (2/9/10).
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#4 of 9 Old 04-18-2010, 12:14 PM
 
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i was thinking you would have to sacrifice a bag to spot check. i wouldn't break off a piece. it sucks to lose a bag of your hard work but at least then you will maybe know what is going on? could you pump before working out? it seems like a good sign that she took some. maybe just a fluke day?

married to my love , in love with MJ born 1/18/10 and PJ born 4/6/12 waterbirth.jpg and now due with a surprise 11/14!
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#5 of 9 Old 04-19-2010, 04:42 PM
 
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If it turns out to be lipase, it seems like a hassle in the beginning, but isn't really so bad. Here is what works for me: My milk is affected only if I leave it sitting at room temperature or freeze it without scalding it first. It is fine for days (up to a week) if I put it directly in the refrigerator after I pump. So to get started, over a few days I pump what I will need for one day at work and leave it in the frig. Then what I pump while at work I leave in the frig for my next day at work, etc. This minimizes the need for freezing. If I know I will not use milk within a week, I scald it immediately after pumping it (by microwaving it in a glass bottle, my only option at work), put it in the frig until cool, and then transfer to freezer bags for freezing.
And I wouldn't worry about the color. Everyone's milk looks different, even from day to day. Some of my coworker's milk (I have seen in the frig at work) is almost a greenish color!

knit.gifMarried to my best friend, mama to two boys (12/5/07, 2/12/10) and a sweet little girl (5/2/13).

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#6 of 9 Old 04-19-2010, 04:50 PM
 
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ddcc, I heard a neat trick,where you stick to top of the bag in water just long enough for the submerged part to thaw. Scoop that out, and stick the rest of the bag in teh freezer.

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#7 of 9 Old 04-19-2010, 05:01 PM
 
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*totally thinking out loud here*

could it be that the top film you are talking about is nice juicy fat that has just floated to the top as it froze. I know that when I buy heavy whipping cream the thick cream that attaches to the top rim always tastes like the entire carton is bad but the cream below is always nice and sweet. I wonder if you just scraped the top part off if below it would taste fine. I really don't want you to have to lose all your hard work! hugs to you mama......
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#8 of 9 Old 04-19-2010, 09:54 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks so much for all the support and suggestions, mamas!! I really appreciate it!


Quote:
Originally Posted by berrymama View Post
If it turns out to be lipase, it seems like a hassle in the beginning, but isn't really so bad. Here is what works for me: My milk is affected only if I leave it sitting at room temperature or freeze it without scalding it first. It is fine for days (up to a week) if I put it directly in the refrigerator after I pump. So to get started, over a few days I pump what I will need for one day at work and leave it in the frig. Then what I pump while at work I leave in the frig for my next day at work, etc. This minimizes the need for freezing. If I know I will not use milk within a week, I scald it immediately after pumping it (by microwaving it in a glass bottle, my only option at work), put it in the frig until cool, and then transfer to freezer bags for freezing.
And I wouldn't worry about the color. Everyone's milk looks different, even from day to day. Some of my coworker's milk (I have seen in the frig at work) is almost a greenish color!
Interesting. I pumped last night (before exercising, as sometimes I was pumping after a workout) and left it in the fridge. This morning it tasted fine, so I pumped some more, bagged it, and stuck it in the freezer. I will have to thaw it next week to see if it soured. I wonder why freezing would sour it, but it stays fresh in the fridge. When you scald in the microwave, how do you determine when it's done? Thanks!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by texmati View Post
ddcc, I heard a neat trick,where you stick to top of the bag in water just long enough for the submerged part to thaw. Scoop that out, and stick the rest of the bag in teh freezer.
That is a cool trick!! I will try this to test things out!

Quote:
Originally Posted by hadassah View Post
*totally thinking out loud here*

could it be that the top film you are talking about is nice juicy fat that has just floated to the top as it froze. I know that when I buy heavy whipping cream the thick cream that attaches to the top rim always tastes like the entire carton is bad but the cream below is always nice and sweet. I wonder if you just scraped the top part off if below it would taste fine. I really don't want you to have to lose all your hard work! hugs to you mama......
I swirled it around to mix before tasting, so I'm not sure it was just the top that tasted bad....will have to experiment!

Amy, proud Mama to my girls Natalie (12/7/06) and Miranda (2/9/10).
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#9 of 9 Old 04-20-2010, 06:41 PM
 
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To scald in the microwave, I put it in (I pump directly into glass bottles) and watch it super close. As soon as I see the start of bubbling around the top, I hit the stop button, cover it loosely and stick it in the frig. If you have access to a stovetop, you can do the same thing in a small saucepan just until it starts bubbling around the edge. I think I read this on a Le Leche site or something.

knit.gifMarried to my best friend, mama to two boys (12/5/07, 2/12/10) and a sweet little girl (5/2/13).

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