Sunday, February 15, 2009

Review & Giveaway: MilkBank storage system

When I first heard about the MilkBank breast milk storage system, I couldn't get over how awesome and smart the idea was: vacuum-sealing breast milk to preserve the taste and nutrients during storage, plus adding an insulated outer bottle to keep the milk warm throughout the feeding. Man, why wasn't this on the market 9 months ago when I first went back to work and was pumping 4 times a day?

When I was given the opportunity to test and review the system, I was totally giddy and couldn't wait to try it out. I pumped a few ounces of milk and then used the vacuum pump to remove all of the air from the storage container and into the freezer it went. The next day, I stuck the container in a cup of warm water. I have to say, I could tell a difference in the flavor of my defrosted milk. It was closer to the taste of freshly expressed milk than usual. (Sometimes breastfed babies will refuse bottled milk and often it is because the taste of the milk is off. This system remedies that.)

I then added some warm water to the insulating bottle, stuck the defrosted milk inside and added the nipple and air vent attachment. The insulating bottle keeps the milk warm throughout the feeding and the air vent attachment helps to reduce the amount of air the baby swallows.
Did you know that a recent study found that babies thrive better when they are served warm milk? Well, the creators of the MilkBank system did, which is why they added in the insulating bottle. So smart! (and this is probably another reason breast milk is superior's always at the optimal temperature!)

The nipple that comes with the system is shaped so that baby is forced to keep a wide open latch, which makes it easier to go back and forth from breast to bottle. Another bonus is that the entire system is BPA, phthalate and PVC-free so you can feel good about using it for your baby.

My only complaints about the system is that the bottles have a lot of parts, and if not assembled just so, the bottle will leak. They claim the system is guaranteed leak-proof, but if I could manage to mess it up, I am sure another mom could, too. And any nursing mom can tell you how awful it is to realize your bottle is leaking and wasting your precious milk! The package I received also came with an 8 oz feeding bottle with a stage 2 nipple for "the older baby." I really believe breastfeeding infants should use a stage 1 or "slow flow" or "newborn" nipple regardless of age. The flow of the stage 2 nipple was entirely too fast for my 14 month old and he choked on the milk. The stage 1 nipple was perfect, though.

The makers of MilkBank have generously offered to give one of my readers the MilkBank storage system and an extra bottle. The gift includes:

1 vacuum pump
3 vacuum storage caps
1 2.5 oz storage/feeding bottle
2 5 oz storage/feeding bottles
1 outer insulating bottle with stage 1 nipple & dome
1 8 oz bottle with stage 2 nipple

To enter the giveaway, leave me a comment telling me why you do or plan on pumping. Because this is such a great giveaway, I am going to offer everyone FOUR extra entries!

1. Follow me on Twitter. I'm blacktating
2. Tweet this giveaway
3. Subscribe to my blog
4. Follow my blog

Please leave a separate comment for each of your entries. The contest is open to US mailing addresses only. Winners will be selected by The contest closes on Monday, February 23rd at midnight (eastern time). The winner will be announced via email and on Blacktating. The winner will have until Wednesday, February 25th to claim the prize or another winner will be selected. Good luck!

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