My friend Marina attaches the suction cup of the breast pump to her nipple and also presses the button. The mechanically noise native the pump mixes v the sounds of proclaiming executives having actually lunch. Marina has a two-year-old daughter who's beginning to wean, and also I've come by she office to have actually lunch with her and also drink few of her breast milk.

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Breast milk is food for babies, of course, but if some not necessarily trusted media outlets room to believed, it's also a life-affirming, youth restoring nectar for adults. There are claims that drinking it have the right to improve her skin, work wonders for your immune system, aid build muscle and also can even be supplied as call solution. And apparently, it tastes good too. If it's no coming the end of your own nips, girlfriend can find it top top websites prefer Onlythebreast, where new mothers go to earn part extra cash by marketing their excess milk. Mainly to other parents that can't or won't feed your babies through their very own breast milk, but also to adults that drink it because that themselves. Of course a portion of those human being drink it due to the fact that they gain off on that in some way, yet others drink the valuable fluid since of its alleged health benefits.


I determined to uncover out if drinking this sweet juice of life would execute wonders for me too, by having actually some the Marina's every morning in ~ breakfast, because that a week.



Marina and also her pump. All photos by the author

Marina desires to progressively stop breastfeeding for this reason she has actually some milk left – and also she swears it doesn't average her baby will starve. As the pump suck Marina's nipple, milk beginning dripping right into the container connected to the machine. After around 15 minutes, it's practically filled. Once she puts it on the table, I provide it a thorough inspection. The looks like an extremely skimmed milk. Ns still feel choose I'm robbing a boy of that meal, yet Marina insists the she has an ext than enough.

With some apprehension, i take a sip. The milk is warm and also kind that sweet – the reminds me of very watery horchata. It's not so various from oat milk or rice milk, other than for the aftertaste, i m sorry assures you instantly that you're drink something that came out the a mammal. As soon as I give her a look the says, "Oy, I simply drank your breast milk," she smiles in ~ me. She speak me the she has drunk her own breast milk countless times – she has also cooked with it. "I do so lot milk that ns don't know what to do with it. It's too lot for the baby, and also I feel horrible throwing it away," she says.

Adults drinking chest milk is solid a new phenomenon. The ancient Egyptians are said to have actually used it come treat wounds, for example. Then there's the exemplary story of roman inn Charity – of a woman, Pero, who covertly breastfed her incarcerated dad Cimon to save him indigenous starvation. And one male was even made a saint since of chest milk; The Catholic Saint Bernard to be still a fresh-faced 12th Century monk once the Bishop that Chalon checked out his abbey, and also the abbot request Bernard to do a sermon. The made him really nervous – as he wasn't a born orator – and also after praying on it because that a night the Virgin Mary appeared to that in a dream to offer him the gift of eloquence through squirting her chest milk in his eye or his mouth – spiritual accounts room not totally clear top top this.



And currently it's my turn. My first sip is together fresh of the teat as can be expected given the fact that I'm no Marina's daughter, yet the various other milk i take indigenous Marina she has frozen over the last few months. I save it in a portable cooler – six glass jars containing about 50 ml the milk, each labelled with the day of extraction.

The first couple of days i drink that neat, as one's supposed to drink a pure elixir the eternal youth. I feel more energetic, an ext lucid and purified. I am not as worn down as I typically am after ~ two hrs of Pilates. That emotion fades once I fulfill Alba Padró – breastfeeding advisor, IBCLC (International board Certified Lactation Consultant), and co-founder the lactation application LactApp. She reminds me that placebos room a hell of a drug.


The health benefits attributed come breastmilk space real, she maintains, but only because that infants. However, "it's true that chest milk have the right to alleviate the impacts of chemotherapy, so some human being drink it during their treatment." but the truth that drink breastmilk is top top the rise in the bodybuilding neighborhood is based upon a misconception, she says. "It's very unlikely that the energy civilization feel after ~ drinking breast milk is actually obtained from it." human milk, Padró explains, has very low protein levels due to the fact that human babies grow very slowly. "Milk from a cow, a hare or also a mouse has so much an ext more nutrient for adults than milk native a human woman," she says. "I have the right to imagine breast milk can possibly assist athletes come recover particular minerals, but you can do the with other drinks or mixes, too. I think it's simply a trend, there's no clinical basis for it. The course breast milk is a superfood, yet only because that infants."



I may have actually lost my blind faith in the health and wellness benefits the drinking breast milk together a grown woman, yet I'm still established to have actually a glass every morning. It's not the same, though. Top top the fourth day, I simply pour the milk in my coffee and also drink it in a hurry, burning my tongue.

I'm in a hurry, because I'm late because that my meeting through Marga Cáceres. Marga spent a year having chemotherapy to treat breast cancer – i m sorry she fortunately appears to have overcome now. Throughout the treatment, she take it a everyday dose of 100 ml the breastmilk. "Chemo came v some horrific side results – nausea, a costantly uncomfortable stomach, loss of my appetite. The all disappeared once I began drinking chest milk. It could have been a coincidence, yet the effects of the chemo weren't half as negative as they to be before," Marga tells me. She bought the milk from an acquaintance that a friend. "The seller promised me she had more than enough milk and also could usage the money. Ns didn't really think about whether the was right or wrong – that was simply what I essential in that situation."

For practically a year, Marga bought breastmilk irregularly from her provider, relying on what stage her chemotherapy was at. She paid €15 (£13) because that a everyday dosage, 20 job a month, which amounts to much more than €300 (£261) a month. Marga tells me that the black industry in Spain is growing. Apparently, there room official, legal chest milk banks, but access to these banks is restricted to human being who room feeding babies. Everyone who desires to buy breast milk for another reason needs to do therefore illegally. The main milk banks guarantee their milk is cost-free of disease, bacteria and additives and, however there's no together guarantee for milk gained through unregulated digital or offline networks. Because that instance, research studies have uncovered that control not controlled milk deserve to be dangerous because it can be contaminated with bacteria or diluted with water or cow milk.

Another risk aspect is that together a bodily fluid, chest milk can lug a plethora of conditions – HIV, syphilis, hepatitis or human T-lymphotropic virus, i beg your pardon can cause cancer. So prior to I began drinking Marina's milk, I debated this danger with her – and also subsequently discovered myself in the uncomfortable instance of questioning someone to perform some health tests and also show me the reports. I hadn't done that in a lengthy time – and also never v a dear friend.

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On the last 2 days of my week that drinking chest milk, ns knew that it had actually all basically been because that nothing. I couldn't because that the life the me throw the end the last two milk jars i had, therefore I chose to warmth them both up and include two tablespoons of cocoa to them. Ns sat ~ above the windowsill looking exterior while sipping my hot chocolate. That tasted good and had been together cheap as it comes. Out on the street, a toddler wearing a tracksuit pass by in a stroller, thrust along through his father. The baby was sucking from a bottle, and also seemed to glare disapprovingly in ~ me. Ns jumped up from the home window and conveniently retreated to mine kitchen. Every little thing breast milk does because that an adult, drink it quiet feels choose you're stealing from a baby.


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