Can breastmilk really be kept for eight days?
I am a little confused. I read in one book that if you are not planning on using breastmilk within 24 hours that you should freeze it. Another said it was okay to store for up to eight days in the fridge. What is safe?Question:
I can understand your confusion. When you hear conflicting information it's can be difficult to decide the best way to handle a situation.
My storage guidelines for breastmilk were taken from a study by Pardou, "Human Milk Banking: Influence of Storage Processes and of Bacterial Contamination on Some Milk Constituents" (Biol Neonate 1994;65:302-309) In this study it was found that some of the breastmilk samples that were studied had even lower bacterial levels than on the day they were expressed. Pardou concluded that refrigeration of breastmilk that will be used within 8 days is preferable to freezing since this method of storage maintains the antimicrobial properties, which are so beneficial to your baby.
You will find different guidelines for milk storage. Often people would rather recommend a more conservative figure than what is shown to be safe by research. Best wishes!Answer: