Recognize Changes in Breast Milk Color and Causes

Generally breast milk (breast milk) It has a milky white color. However, there are several conditions that can cause changes in the color of breast milk, ranging from the period of milk production to the type of food consumed by breastfeeding mothers.

Changes in the color of breast milk are generally not something to worry about. Even so, breastfeeding mothers still need to understand what normal and abnormal changes in breast milk color look like.

Normal Breast Milk Color Change

The first few weeks after giving birth, the color of breast milk will change. This is caused by changes in the content of breast milk which is normal. This change in breast milk color takes place in several stages, namely:

Colostrum is yellowish white

Colostrum is the first milk that comes out before the time of delivery until the first few days of the baby's birth. Colostrum color is yellowish white or orange. Colostrum is very rich in protein, vitamins, and immunoglobulins which are important in building the baby's immune system.

Transitional milk is white

Transitional milk appears at the end of colostrum production. The color change of breast milk that occurs at this stage is from yellowish white or orange to white. Transitional breast milk contains a lot of fat and lactose.

Mature breast milk is clear, bluish and white

Mature breast milk appears after going through a transition period. This type of breast milk contains more water than carbohydrates, proteins, and fats.

Mature breast milk is divided into two types, namely: foremilk which is slightly clear and bluish in color and hindmilk which looks white. Although different, these two types of mature breast milk are very necessary for the baby's growth and development.

Abnormal Changes in Breast Milk Color

In addition to changes in the content of breast milk, changes in the color of breast milk can also be caused by other things outside the body's natural processes. Although this change in the color of breast milk is said to be abnormal, it is generally not harmful to the baby.

Abnormal changes in the color of breast milk are usually caused by foods, drinks, or drugs that are consumed by breastfeeding mothers. The following are some of the abnormal colors of breast milk:

1. Greenish

When the color of your breast milk turns slightly green, you may be eating too many green foods, such as spinach or seaweed. Changes in the color of breast milk to green can also be caused by taking supplements or diet drugs.

2. Reddish and orange in color

Breast milk that is reddish and orange in color can be caused by foods or drinks that contain dyes. Examples are sodas, juices, or red or orange processed milk.

3. Brown

Breast milk that turns brown may contain blood, as a result of a sore on your nipple. But don't worry, because this condition will usually return to normal after a few days and will not harm the baby.

4. Black

Although it is rare, there are some breastfeeding mothers who experience changes in the color of their breast milk to black. This condition can be caused by a side effect of the drug minocycline, which is actually not recommended for breastfeeding mothers.

In general, these various abnormal changes in the color of breast milk are nothing to worry about. However, if the change in breast milk color persists, accompanied by itching, pain, or bleeding in the breast, you should immediately consult a doctor for proper examination and treatment.