Oftentimes, the way a food looks would give you an idea of how it would taste. For instance, if it looks spicy it would taste spicy. If it looks creamy it would taste creamy. The way food looks too creates inquisitiveness in people. One thing people are inquisitive about is breast milk. Is breast milk sweet? Does it taste as good as it looks? Well, breast milk is considered to be very creamy and tasty. And it has a really pleasant flavor. That’s the reason why babies enjoy it. But it is known to have different tastes at different times. Sometimes the flavor is nice and sometimes it isn’t. It all depends on preference.
The different tastes that come with breast milk have reasons. It is believed that the taste of breast milk would depend on a lot of factors. Such factors are culture, genetics, and the food a mother consumes throughout her life. That’s the reason why breast milk from different mothers would taste different. Also to different people breast milk has a different taste. We’ll be taking a look at the different components of breast milk.
Why is Breast Milk Sweet?
Breast milk is made up of sugar. The sugar present in breast milk is known as lactose. Indeed, lactose isn’t the sweetest among sugars. But when in very large quantities like in breast milk it can be really sweet. And lactose that is present in breast milk is very high. That’s why breast milk is very sweet.
At the same time, breast milk is made up of fat. The fat present in breast milk is a determinant of its creaminess. At first, when the milk starts to flow from the breast it appears thin and watery. That’s because the fat content at first is really small. But as the milk flows the more the fat content begins to increase. And this makes the milk look a bit thicker and creamier.
Aside from that, breast milk also gets its flavors from the food the mother eats. So the food a mother eats daily is a determinant of the taste of the milk. That’s why doctors advise mothers to watch what they eat and drink when they’re pregnant. The food you eat as well goes through your breast milk to the baby. So if you eat a well-balanced diet that’s full of veggies and fruits your child would get a dose of it.
Experts say that the foods that a baby was exposed to through breast milk are easier for the child to eat when he starts eating solid food. That way, the baby would be able to develop the taste for many foods and even spices.
What Changes the Taste of Breast Milk
There are a few reasons why the taste of breast milk would change. And there are some of these reasons that would affect the baby. For some babies, they do not notice any changes in the taste. But some babies would notice the change and this will cause them to eat less. Some even go on a feeding strike. That’s why you must know what can change the taste of your breast milk. This way you would be able to avoid some of this and keep up the good work of breastfeeding your child.
- Hormones: Well, this is not something you have control over. A hormone shift can occur when you return to your normal menstrual cycle or when you get pregnant. And this causes a change in the taste of breast milk. The good thing is that it’s still safe to keep breastfeeding even when either of these happens. As long as you’re not at high risk then you’re good to go.
- Medications: Certain medications can affect the taste of breast milk. If you start taking a new medication and after some time you notice your baby isn’t eating as much then the drug could be the cause. That’s why it’s important to contact your doctor before using any drug while breastfeeding.
- Exercise: Strenuous exercise is also known to be a cause of a change in breast milk taste. When you exercise there’s a buildup of lactic acid in the body. at the same time, there is saltiness in your breast due to perspiration. So make sure that you limit your exercise to light or moderate. Also, try to wash your breast before breastfeeding so that the saltiness will be washed away.
- Smoking: With studies, we now know that a breastfeeding mother that smokes produces milk that has the smell and taste of the cigarette. If you really have to smoke make sure it’s after breastfeeding. And then make sure you don’t smoke at least 2 hours before your next round of breastfeeding. This would help remove the smell and taste of cigarettes from the milk.
- Alcohol: This is another well-known reason for a change in the taste of breast milk. When a person drinks it would take about 2 hours for the alcohol to leave the system. So if you want for a long time after drinking before you breastfeed then the amount of alcohol in breast milk would be very small. If it’s the other way around then you can expect that your breast milk would have the taste and the flavor of whatever alcohol you consumed.
- Mastitis: This is one of the common breast infections. Mastitis changes the taste of breast milk. It causes breast milk to have a salty and strong taste. If you have this infection you can still breastfeed your baby.
Now, you have an idea of the components of breast milk. And also the nutrients it offers to your baby. So make sure your baby gets all those nutrients. Also, avoid anything that can cause a change in the taste of breast milk. And that’s because your baby would most likely not eat if the taste isn’t good. That, of course, is not a good thing for your baby.
So if you’re been inquisitive about the taste of breast milk we hope you now have a clearer picture. And you now understand why is breast milk sweet.