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how long can you store EBM in the fridge?

  1. #1
    lesliefu is offline Registered User
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    how long can you store EBM in the fridge?

    I was wondering how long it is safe to store EBM in the refridgerator section (no space in freezer section)....

    thanks,

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    nicolejoy is offline Registered User
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    Depends who you ask - at least a couple of days. I've never left it longer than 3, although I've heard you CAN store it for up to six days, and searching online, some places say 8 days. Milk "sours" before it goes "unhealthy" and most babies will refuse it at that point...

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    AudreysMom is offline Registered User
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    Rule of 3

    My hospital (in the USA) said the general rule for full term babies is 3 hours at room temperature, 3 days in the fridge or 3 months in the freezer. That said, this is HK where the humidity tends to spoil food quicker. And premature babies have stricter rules.

    Don't freeze milk you plan to use within 3days because freezing destroys some of the antibodies. (However, frozen breast milk is still healthier than formula.) You can keep milk that's been frozen and thawed in the refrigerator for up to 24 hours, but don't refreeze it.

    The CDC (Center for Disease Control in the USA) has guidelines for this. http://www.cdc.gov/breastfeeding/rec...breastmilk.htm

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    lesliefu is offline Registered User
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    thanks alot for the information! :) really appreciate it!

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    RileyC is offline Registered User
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    I can't speak from personal BF experience yet, but according to p.489 of my copy of "The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding" published by La Leche League International, EMB can be stored in the fridge (temperature at 4 degrees Celsius) for 3-8 days. The book says to store milk in the back of the main body of the fridge. This guidance is intended for those feeding EBM to a healthy full-term infant, so I guess that means it may be different in the case of premature babies.

  6. #6
    nicolejoy's Avatar
    nicolejoy is offline Registered User
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    Quote Originally Posted by AudreysMom View Post
    My hospital (in the USA) said the general rule for full term babies is 3 hours at room temperature, 3 days in the fridge or 3 months in the freezer.
    That's funny, I heard the "rule of six" - 6 hours at room temp/6 days in fridge/6 months in freezer. And that agrees more closely with the CDC link that you posted.

    Whatever it is though, the fresher the better :)

  7. #7
    Obiwan is offline Registered User
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    Checked with the lactation consultant... she says 6 days in the fridge.

  8. #8
    Sarah_Lotus is offline Registered User
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    One of the interesting aspects of the studies looking into how long breastmilk keeps in the fridge is that so far they haven't found keeping the milk to be a problem. After seven days in the fridge there was less bacteria in the milk then when it was first pumped. Remember that there are many antibacterial properties in the milk killing off the bacteria and these also work when the milk is stored in the fridge.

    One of the reasons that the guidelines for how long human milk can be kept has increased and increased over the last two decades is because the studies have got longer and longer. Twenty years ago the recommendation was to keep breastmilk for only 24 hours because the studies only looked at what happened to the milk for 24 hours. Then the studies increase to 48 hours and the recommendations increased. Now the studies have lasted seven days and still the milk is fine.

    Having said that I agree with Nicole, "the fresher the better".

    SARAH

    Sarah Hung IBCLC
    www.lotuslactation.com

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