As a new mom, there are so many things to think about. For breastfeeding moms, one thing that may catch us off guard are the differing colors of breast milk. Believe it or not, it is completely normal for breast milk to change colors and smells from one day to the next and even between pumping sessions.

Why Does Breast Milk Change Color?

As baby grows and changes, breast milk is naturally designed to meet nutritional needs for different stages. The nutrition that baby needs means that the make up of the milk may be different. When colors vary, it is mainly due to whatever mom eats. It’s easy to forget that whatever mom eats basically goes straight to baby. Breast milk color can vary based on maternal factors such as hydration or dehydration, diet, vitamins and medications. It is normal for milk to have yellow or blue tints and even green because of food dyes. The composition can also change. I was shocked when I started pumping one day and all of the sudden it looked like my milk was actually water!

What Does the Smell or Taste of my Breast Milk Mean?

Another concern can come from the smell of breast milk and even the taste. According to the milk bank, this is due to an enzyme called lipase that changes the way that the fat is broken down into fatty acids. Good news is, this isn’t harmful to baby, but it could cause them to dislike or refuse the breast milk. Also, it is very uncommon for the lipase activity to be so high that it deters baby from feeding.

Storing Breast Milk

Storing breast milk properly is important to keep from unsafe coloration or smells – be sure to check out our helpful blog, Storing and Freezing Breast Milk. When stored properly, different colors and smells will be just fine for baby!

Check out past blog, Storing and Freezing Breast Milk, for tips about milk storage bags that are awesome and convenient for storage. I personally use the Lansinoh milk storage bags with my pump and can feed directly from the bags using the Kiinde adapter kit!


Janel Littlejohn

About the Author

Hi! My name is Janel Littlejohn, I'm 29 years old, and I grew up in Sharpsville, Indiana. Prior to Aeroflow, I have worked in higher education as an adjunct professor, assistant athletic director and women's basketball coach. I married my husband, Corey in September 2016 and we are expecting our first child in September of this year (a little boy)!

Learn more about Janel!