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A new diet craze has some adults in China all pumped up about the health benefits of drinking breast milk — not for babies — for themselves. According to the BBC, some of the wealthier adults in China have been indulging in a recent fad of drinking human breast milk to reap the benefits of its inherent nutritional value. According to reports, many are hiring “beautiful” wet nurses in order to get their daily dose of breast milk — and paying lactating women between $2,000 and $4,000 a month for their liquid gold. After news of this trend hit the web, comments from the public have ranged from supportive to mostly upset that breast milk is being wasted on adults, even adults who are ill, when many babies all over the world could benefit from breast milk. Perhaps breast milk marketing needs a makeover in China. Although privileged adults may be getting their fill of breast milk, babies are not. A 2012 UNICEF report notes that breastfeeding rates in China are abysmally low at just 28%. Additionally, breast milk donations in China are low. Moreover, China’s not alone in this fad. According to a 2004 report, some adults in the USA have also been snatching up breast milk from milk banks for the sake of gaining better health. Although it’s one of the best foods (if not the best food) for human consumption human breast milk may pose other problems. For example, Medical Daily points out that while U.S. breast milk donations are screened for viruses and other infectious diseases such as HIV and hepatitis B, these same stringent procedures may not be in place in China, thus placing adult (or baby) recipients at risk.
via Medical Daily