One mom's photo of her breast milk is getting the Internet pumped up. Arkansas mom Mallory Smothers noticed that her bag from Friday morning versus the one from Thursday night were drastically different—and that's because of a really magical fact about breast milk.
In a Facebook post that has more than 79,000 shares, Smothers said in February 2016 that she nursed her baby every two hours or so overnight, and she didn't pump until she was up for the day. One Friday morning, around 3 a.m., she noticed her daughter was "congested, irritable and sneezing a lot" and attributed it to a cold.
In a viral article we ran in 2015, mom.me contributor Leslie Goldman wrote, "A mother's lactating breasts are actually bouncy undercover doctor/pharmacists, diagnosing infections and dashing off silent prescriptions. That is just cuckoo-awesome."
That's because when a baby nurses, a vacuum is created in which the infant's saliva sneaks into the mom's nipple. If mammary gland receptors detect pathogens from the baby's spit via backwash, Mom's body will change the milk's immunological composition and produce customized antibodies.
That's why Smothers' latest batch of milk "resembles colostrum," orwhat many know as liquid gold—the form of milk moms make during late pregnancy and in the first few days of birth; it's filled with leukocytes and antibodies to protect newborns against disease.
"This comes after nursing the baby with a cold all night long. Pretty awesome, huh?! The human body never ceases to amaze me," Smothers wrote.