It is known that breastmilk is the healthiest choice for your baby, but how about cold breastmilk? Breastmilk is a great source of natural vitamins and minerals and provides your baby with antioxidants that are present in the mother.
While some mothers can feed their child naturally every time their baby is hungry, others must rely on pumping and storing their breastmilk. If you store your breastmilk in the fridge, can you give it to your baby cold, or do you have to warm it up first?
Many years ago, parents were told to warm their babies bottles. In fact, many parents today were probably fed with warm bottles. But just like cars, televisions and “social” contact, things have changed over the years, and that includes how to feed your baby.
Today, it is not necessary to warm your baby’s bottle. In fact, many pediatricians often warn against warming the bottle because the contents could be too hot for your baby and burn their mouth, tongue and throat. This is especially true if you warm a bottle in the microwave, as the liquid may not warm evenly.
Also, with today’s everything-is-a-health-hazard mentality, some believe that the plastic bottle could leak harmful toxins into a bottle that is being warmed in the microwave. (Most baby products today are BPA free to eliminate the chances of harmful toxins affecting your child.)
Can I Give My Baby Cold Breastmilk? Answer: Yes
When you breast feed, you cannot control the temperature that comes directly from your breast, but it is generally not too hot or too cold for your child. However, if you pump, you need to store your milk in the fridge or freezer because it can spoil if left at room temperature. Breastmilk can last for several days in the fridge or several months in the freezer.
If you need to store your breastmilk in the fridge, you can take the bottle right out of the fridge and give it to your baby. If your baby is not used to cold temperatures, it may shock him or her at first, and they may be reluctant to take the bottle until it is at their desired temperature. Other babies may not even notice the temperature change and continue drinking away. Either way, cold breastmilk is perfectly fine for your baby to consume.
If you worry about giving your child cold breastmilk, or if your child is reluctant to take a cold bottle, you can let it sit in the bottle or a container at room temperature for a few minutes to “warm” it up. It is recommended to not heat up your child’s bottle in the microwave or boiling on the stove. As previously mentioned, the liquid in the bottle may not heat evenly and can burn your baby.
Breastmilk does not spoil as quickly as cow’s milk, so it is okay to let it sit out for a couple of hours. But just remember that while it does not spoil as quickly, it still spoils, so it is best not to leave it out for long periods of time.
Breastmilk will not lose any nutrients or vitamins if chilled in the fridge or freezer, so there is no need to worry that storing your breastmilk will have any negative effects on your child’s health. Whether it comes directly from your breast or from a stored bottle, it will still provide your child with all the essential vitamins and minerals that your child needs for healthy growth and development.
From Breast or Fridge
Remember, when feeding your baby breastmilk, it is perfectly fine to feed it to them directly from the breast or cold from the fridge. Either temperature is perfectly healthy for your child. If you want to warm a cold bottle, do not heat it in the microwave or on the stove, and simply leave it sit at room temperature for a few minutes. Just remember not to let it sit out for too long, as breastmilk will spoil if left out at room temperature for an extended period of time.
If you have any questions about feeding your baby cold breastmilk, it is best to discuss it with your child’s pediatrician. He or she will be able to better discuss your concerns in more detail.