What can I do for high lipase in my breast milk?

Answered by Willie Powers

If you are experiencing high lipase in your breast milk, there are several steps you can take to treat it. High lipase refers to an enzyme in breast milk that can cause the milk to develop a soapy or metallic taste over time. This can be off-putting for some babies and may lead to them refusing to drink the milk. However, there are ways to address this issue and still provide your baby with the benefits of your breast milk.

1. Track your timing: It is important to keep track of the timing when expressing and storing your breast milk. The flavor of high lipase milk can change as quickly as 24 hours or over a few days. By noting the time when you express the milk and when you notice the change in taste, you can better understand how quickly the lipase enzyme is affecting your milk.

2. Adjust the pump: Some women find that adjusting the settings on their breast pump can help reduce the lipase activity in their milk. Experiment with different pump settings to see if it makes a difference in the taste of your milk. You may find that a slower pumping speed or lower suction level can help minimize the lipase enzyme’s effect.

3. Mix it with freshly pumped milk or other foods: If you notice your milk developing a soapy taste, you can try mixing it with freshly pumped milk. Combining the high lipase milk with fresh milk can help mask the taste and make it more palatable for your baby. Alternatively, you can mix the high lipase milk with other foods, such as baby cereal or purees, to dilute the taste.

4. Scald the milk: Scalding the milk is a common method used to treat high lipase milk. To scald the milk, heat it in a saucepan on the stove until it reaches a temperature of around 180°F (82°C). Be careful not to boil the milk as this can destroy some of its nutrients. Once the milk reaches the desired temperature, immediately cool it down by placing the saucepan in an ice bath or transferring it to a clean, pre-sterilized container. Scalding the milk inactivates the lipase enzyme and can prevent the development of the soapy taste.

It’s important to note that not all babies are bothered by the taste of high lipase milk. Some may not even notice a difference, while others may still be willing to drink it despite the altered flavor. If your baby is refusing the milk, it’s worth trying the methods mentioned above to see if they improve the taste. Additionally, consulting with a lactation consultant or healthcare provider can provide further guidance and support in managing high lipase milk.

Remember, every mother’s breastfeeding journey is unique, and what works for one may not work for another. It may take some trial and error to find the best solution for you and your baby.