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Thread: Scalding breastmilk due to excessive Lipase

  1. #1
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    Default Scalding breastmilk due to excessive Lipase

    I have recently learned that I have high levels of lipase in my BM, and as a result, my BM tastes soapy and metallicy within one day of storage. My daughter refuses this BM in a bottle, but will accept freshly expressed milk (I was testing to see if she was rejecting the bottle itself or the milk - turns out it was the yucky tasting 1-day old milk). freezing immediately doesn't help either.

    I have learned that scalding the milk immediately after expression is the only way to inactivate the enzyme. does this destroy too many other properties? should I just supplement with formula?

    I am a working mom, so I have to do something...I am wondering if there is any way to alter my diet to reduce this enzyme? I generally eat a healthy balanced diet and exercise in moderation.

    any suggestions or advice would be helpful!

    Thanks,
    Silvy

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Scalding breastmilk due to excessive Lipase

    The scaleded milk is still easier to digest and has more benefits than formula.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Scalding breastmilk due to excessive Lipase

    Scalding milk is the recommended solution for excessive lipase. The breastmilk is still chock full of immunities and nutrients for your baby, scalding is the safest way to reduce the lipase, which as you can see is making the milk taste unpleasant. Lipase is the enzyme that breaks down fat in the milk.

    Per the Breastfeeding Answer Book, page 229, "If the mother finds after freezeing and thawing that her milk has a rancid smell, she can prevent this from occurring in the future by heating her expressed milk to a scald (bubbling around the edges but not boiling) right after collecting it, and then quickly cooling and freezing it. Scalding inactivates the lipase (Lawrence and Lawrence p. 696). Once the milk has acquired the rancid smell, however, treating the milk will not help. It is not known whether or not this milk is safe for the baby; however most babies refuse it.

    Some mothers have reported a slightly soapy smell to their frozen milk after it was thawed. This change in smell has been attributed to changes in the milk fats related to storage in self-defrosting refrigerators-freezers; it has not been found to be harmful to the baby (Lawrence and Lawrence, p.696)."

    These above guidelines are assuming baby is healthy and full-term, if you have a premature baby the guidelines may be different, check with your baby's doctor.

    Best wishes -
    Karen Smith
    LLL Leader, IL

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Scalding breastmilk due to excessive Lipase

    I seem to be having the same problem - excessive lipase in my BM, causing my milk to go bad very quickly. I'm not actually sure how quickly but certainly within a day it seems to be bad. I have a question regarding scalding, if someone can help. I pump at work and do not have access to a stove so scalding the milk right after expression is not an option for me. I do however have a microwave oven at work. Can I scald the milk using a microwave? If so, any guidelines as to that (how long it takes, power level, etc.)? If the micro is not recommended, will it help to scald my milk an hour or two after I express it, when I get home? I am concerned about fixing this situation asap because my milk is absolutely disgusting tasting after 1 day and I cannot give it to the baby.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Scalding breastmilk due to excessive Lipase

    It is not recommended to use a microwave to heat breastmilk. Scalding it later that same day on the stovetop is likely just fine. The best way to figure it out might be to do this with a few smaller test batches. I'd be interested to hear your results!

    Best of luck to you,
    Karen Smith
    LLL Leader, IL

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Scalding breastmilk due to excessive Lipase

    I have excessive lipase in my milk and work 2 days a week, so have been pumping and scalding in the microwave (also have no stove at work). This was on the recommendation of a LLL Leader - I thought it was the very act of scalding that destroys some of the 'goodies' in the milk so it wouldn't matter whether it was done on stove or by microwave? But I am no expert so perhaps someone could clarify this issue?

    Also on her recommendation, I did a series of little tests on my milk when I discovered this issue. I expressed an amount and split it into portions. Some I left out on the bench and tasted every hour to see how long it took to sour. I did the same with a sample in the fridge, plus a sample that I froze immediately, then thawed and left in fridge. All samples soured after about 3-4 hours. So I had to do something with my milk at work.

    If you decide to use the microwave, you would have to test the time as all microwaves are so different. In ours, I put 100ml in for 28 seconds on high, and my daughter drinks it fine.

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Scalding breastmilk due to excessive Lipase

    Just a supporting point of view for Kiwijo's experience. My milk seems to start acquiring the soapy taste within a few hours and I have had luck scalding in the microwave (though I find stovetop scalding more convenient because you don't have to judge the time based on the quantity). You do need to test a few batches and quantities to make sure you're scalding enough (and not too much). Good luck!

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Scalding breastmilk due to excessive Lipase

    Here's some references on microwaving human milk:

    Sigman M, Burke KI, Swarner OW, Shavlik GW. Effects of microwaving human milk: changes in IgA content and bacterial count. J Am Diet Assoc. 1989 May;89(5):690-2.

    Quan R, Yang C, Rubinstein S, Lewiston NJ, Sunshine P, Stevenson DK, Kerner JA Jr. Effects of microwave radiation on anti-infective factors in human milk. Pediatrics. 1992 Apr;89(4 Pt 1):667-9.

    Perhaps these can shed some light on this issue of whether it's alright to scald breast milk in the microwave.

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Scalding breastmilk due to excessive Lipase

    If you don't have access to these articles, I just looked them up through my husband's school account. Basically, they say that microwaving milk kills the anti-infective and other factors in teh milk. Scalding or even pasteurizing on the stove DOES NOT DO THIS. I am surprised, I was always told that pasteurizing would kill the antibodies, etc, but apparently that's not true! But apparently, microwaving DOES do this and makes your milk a perfect place for bacteria to grow. Once human milk has been microwaved, it can be at room temp for only an hour or so for safety, just like formula.

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Scalding breastmilk due to excessive Lipase

    Thanks Mamallama, for looking up those papers. My DH was going to do the same, but hasn't yet. We have had a lot of conversations here at home comparing pasteurizing vs. microwaving, so it's good to have some clear answers!

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