People have been marveling about the bodily magic that is breast milk for basically all of human history. But have you ever wondered about the magical aspects of it that you can't see with the naked eye? One woman's curiosity led to a fascinating view of it: this video of breast milk under a microscope is the coolest thing you'll see today.
Jansen Howard posted an amazing video to her Facebook page last week that, at first glance, might not have looked like anything recognizable to most. As she explained in the post, she put some breast milk under a microscope and was awestruck by what she saw:
You guys... this is SO COOL!!!!!!!! this is the living liquid gold we call breast milk in motion!!!! My dad is a blood microscopist and this is a single drop off my breast milk under his microscope!!!! It's miraculous and it's ALIVE tailored to my babies needs at this moment!!!! Absolutely amazing!!!
Since most of us don't have high powered, medical-grade microscopes at our disposal, it's great that Howard shared the post with her Facebook followers so they get a closer look. The post has been shared almost 15,000 times and has more than 2,000 comments — mostly from people who were as amazed by the sight as Howard was.
Howard told The Huffington Post that she was inspired to get a closer look at her own breast milk after reading that it constantly evolves in order to fit a baby's needs. When her 11-month-old daughter caught a mild illness, she wanted to look and see if she could see the white blood cells in her breast milk that had been dispatched to help boost her baby's immunity.
Breast milk is unique in that it exists solely to benefit the baby with no inherent benefit to the mother who produces it. While moms have always lauded the emotional benefits of breastfeeding, she doesn't actually gain anything from the secretion itself. The antibodies in breast milk do, however, help build up her baby's immune system, and can respond when a nursing infant has some kind of infection, such as rotavirus.
Breast milk is a pretty amazing substance that's made up of all kinds of bioactive molecules, all of which help prevent inflammation, promote immunity, and cultivate healthy microbes in the growing body of a new baby. Even if a woman isn't breastfeeding, whether by choice or because she's unable to, it's still pretty neat to know that our bodies are capable of producing something so cool and powerful.