If you have tuned into my recent posts, you may have seen that I recently tested my breast milk with the standard breast milk kit from Lactation Lab! Overall, it was a very easy and smooth experience, which I felt like made everything even better – especially trying to collect and transfer breast milk with two little ones!
*Of note, there may be affiliate links to Lactation Lab as well as to Amazon in this post. This is at no cost to you.
So first off, I started with using milk from a day that I worked, since I already had pumped that morning. I then used the haakaa to collect a little more throughout the rest of the day to give a more comprehensive sample. I transferred everything into the little tube that was provided and put that in the freezer along with the ice pack to freeze overnight! Once the morning rolled around, I put it in the little orange envelope they provided and sent it away in my own mailbox – how easy!!
While it said to wait about 7-10 days for results, I had my results in 5 days! In the standard kit, they tested the following: total calories, carbohydrates, fat, protein, calcium, iron, vitamin A, vitamin C, and vitamin b12. The results were very easy to read and it gave me a good idea of some things I needed to focus on to optimize my milk! I loved that it was never about “deficiencies” in my milk, but just an overall picture of things I could focus on eating more.
As this is my second child and I am certainly in the nitty gritty of parenthood right now, I know my nutrition has kind of been.. well.. not a priority as compared to my kids. The thing is though, it NEEDS to be! I am making breast milk for my child and while it’s amazing no matter what I eat, I want it to be better – and that starts with ME and my diet, I know that, and this emphasized it more.. I need to EAT! (Don’t forget it’s already recommended you add on 500 calories per day when you’re breastfeeding!!).
What I found most interesting, while all my numbers fell into the “normal” category, is how foods that I craved often were the ones I was on the lower end of normal in – it’s like my body is trying to tell me something, duh! I’m all onboard with intuitive eating and this really just hit home and reassured me that it’s so great to just LISTEN to your body and what you need!
I was on the lower end in iron and Vitamin B12, which, yeah – I only eat meat once a day for dinner (usually), so I know I need to up that, or at least add in some eggs or an additional supplement if I feel like I can’t meet those nutritional needs. I was also a little low on Vitamin C – which I tell ya, I’m always craving orange juice – so odd (but cool), right!?
Check out this screenshot of the levels of iron in my breastmilk! It’s so easy to read, right?!
Personally, I feel fairly knowledgeable (enough) to use these results to help add things into my diet, but if you’re not really sure where to start, you could absolutely take these to your next visit with your doctor, request to see a dietitian, etc! Lactation lab also actually offers Telehealth services with functional medicine doctors and dietitians if you wanted to reach out to them directly!
One other thing they offer, which I have not had to use this time around, is mastitis test strips! You can dip them directly in your breast milk to determine if you have mastitis and if you need antibiotics. As someone who did get mastitis with my first child (it was AWFUL) – this would have been so helpful. I had no idea where to turn, if I could get rid of it myself, or if I needed further medication. Being a first time breastfeeding mom is hard work and there’s not much guidance on these day to day things that can just pop up! I happened to get mastitis from a clogged duct (that I thought was a sore muscle… first time mom probs, am I right).. likely from inefficient pump parts and a strapless pumping bra that was too small *sigh* .. it was a rough few days getting over that and I would do anything to prevent it again!
One of the greatest parts of all these test kits is that they are FSA/HSA eligible! The Telehealth services are as well – it’s really such a great idea and program that can really help promote a longer, happier breastfeeding journey. I know so many moms who are fearful that they aren’t giving their baby the right nutrients or have been told to eat more of xyz.. without ever knowing fully what the contents of their breast milk really are! I think it could give SO many moms such peace of mind!
Anywho, this kit was gifted to me and I’m so thankful they chose me to try it! You can try it too for 15% off with the code THESLEEPDPT on their website (all kits are 15% off!) or, if you have an Amazon gift card you want to use up, you can also purchase it on Amazon!
As always, please feel free to reach out if you have any questions – I’m truly an open book and I’ll give it to ya straight!
And don’t forget – I’m also always here if you need some help with understanding your baby’s sleep 😉 and figuring out if something is normal or not. If you have an infant and are a first time mom, be sure to check out my “normal infant sleep” blog. If you have an older baby or toddler and are feeling ready to night wean, check that blog out here too! Otherwise, send me an email (firstname.lastname@example.org), check out my courses, or connect with me on Instagram to see if I can help you!
Have a wonderful day!