HIDDEN DANGERS OF THE ONLINE BREAST MILK MARKET
Healthcare experts are warning of the dangers of consuming human breast milk acquired from other mothers(ie- online etc..) – including the risk of contracting sexually transmitted diseases – and are calling for the sale of the product to be regulated by the government.
The unregulated online human milk market has been growing according to an editorial published in the British Medical Journal. The health benefits of breastfeeding are more often than not, but they are more likely to be healthy and successful in life.
The nutritional benefits though are not only being sought by mothers who can’t produce their own milk for their infants – there is also a growing market for the milk to be used as a fitness supplement. The Guardian reports that there are “men wanting milk” – they are looking for milk for fitness, and others who are looking to fulfill a fetish.
Healthcare experts are warning that consuming human milk bought online could pose serious risks to both infants and adults due to the lack of knowledge about the donor’s health, the storage, packaging and shipping of the milk, and not knowing if it has been tampered with.
Dr Steele warns that buying milk online comes with its dangers. “,-online it’s often leftover milk where a mother is expressing more than their baby is taking. Or it’s women who have continued expressing beyond their infant feeding needs who actually sell this. It may be collected in suboptimal conditions, and there may not be sanitisation of the standard you see with a hospital pump.”