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Thread: Immune benefit of frozen milk

  1. #1

    Default Immune benefit of frozen milk

    Someone told me that frozen breastmilk does not have immune benefits. Do fresh, refrigerated, and frozen milk have significantly different levels of benefit?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Not around here as much :(

    Default Re: Immune benefit of frozen milk

    Indeed frozen milk has immune benefits. Many references out there but the quickest one I had on hand is linked here. ( most donor milk is frozen for transit) Quote taken from link:

    ...For example, a preterm infant receives not only nourishment from donor milk but also medicinal therapy in the form of immune substances and growth factors present in donor milk.
    emphasis mine
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  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2007

    Default Re: Immune benefit of frozen milk

    It does not null the immunology of breastmilk to freeze it, but it does reduce the anti-infective properties. Now if you microwave it, bets off the table. That pretty much zaps it. Straight from the tap would be best and then pumped then in the fridge then in the freezer. The further you take it away from it's original source, the more ability we have to mess it up. Breastmilk is pretty tough in some aspects though, especially being antibacterial.

    Although even if you freeze it for a year, heat it in the microwave and then boil it on the stove it's still better than formula!

    These links talk about some of this stuff.



  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    sleepy town

    Default Re: Immune benefit of frozen milk

    I am just speculating here But when my baby was in the NICU they always had me give her fresh milk and not frozen if at all possible. My thoughts and it was confirmed by one of the nurses, is lets say the flu is going around and you have been exposed to it. Your going to build antibodies against it in your milk. Then you freeze it for 2 months, and give it to you LO. The flu is not going around anymore, what good do it do your LO? So my thoughts are not that they aren't there, but they aren't current
    Hi, I'm Lisa, mommy to:
    *Emily Grace 12-13-06.weaned with at 3 1/2
    *Abigail 9-12-08 born at 28 weeks 2lbs 13oz-Now my 2 year old nursing chunky monkey
    Nursing after a 12 week stay in the NICU


  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2007

    Default Re: Immune benefit of frozen milk

    I think it's both things - there is some loss of immune factors during freezing and also the timing is wrong for specific antibodies to illnesses going around. But the consensus is it's still much better to give frozen milk than formula.

  6. #6

    Default Re: Immune benefit of frozen milk

    Thanks so much for everyone who responded so fast. I just returned this week and I started to feed my son the frozen milk I stockpiled while I was out and fresh milk at night (for more current antibodies). I am glad to hear that the stockpiling was worth the effort.

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