Breastfeeding is one of the most beautiful ways a mom can bond with her baby. But have you ever stopped to ponder what breast milk is actually like? Have you thought about what actually happens to your boobs and your body while you're nursing? You might think you know all there is to know, but these incredible facts about breast milk just might blow your mind!
It's Loaded With Sugar
Breast milk tastes different than cow's milk, and has a sweeter, nuttier flavor. You could almost compare it to the taste of vanilla, thanks to the 200 different sugar molecules that it contains. These sugars help provide sustenance and promote growth of healthy bacteria when a baby is first born.
It's More Complex Than Cow's Milk
Human breast milk is the most complex of all mammals. Proteins only account for 10% of the calories in human milk, while for cow's milk, it's about 50%. Cow's milk also has about 4 times the amount of calcium that human milk does.
Your Right Boob Makes More Milk
Almost 75% of all moms produce more milk in their right breast. This has nothing to do with whether or not they are right or left-handed. Nobody really knows why this is.
It Shares the Hormone That Controls Orgasms
The hormone oxytocin is present in breast milk, and is what causes the muscles in milk ducts to contract and produce milk. It’s the same hormone that's released during labor, and also controls the muscle movements in orgasms.
It Can Change Every Day
Right after birth, breast milk is full of antibodies that are designed to slow the growth of harmful bacteria. The level of anitbodies can drop by more than 90% after a month, when the amount of fat and other nutrients increase. As baby grows, breast milk changes its nutritional profile. It can change on a daily basis! For example, water content in breast milk may increase in hotter weather to provide extra hydration for baby.
Producing It Takes Energy
Lactation requires a lot of energy. Almost the same as the daily demand of the human brain. Producing breast milk consumes 25% of the body's energy. In contrast, the brain only uses 20%.
It Sprays From Holes in Your Nipples
When breast milk sprays out of your nipples, it comes out of little openings. The amount of openings varies from mom to mom, but doctors estimate there are 15-20 in each nipple.
Size Doesn't Matter
The size of a woman's breasts has nothing to do with how much milk she produces. Hormones are what trigger the mammary glands to secrete milk.