Microplastic Found in Breast Milk Raises Infant Health Concerns


by Iqra Zafar

10 Best Activities



Scientists found traces of microplastic in human breast milk for the first time. This recent discovery raised concerns regarding infant’s health. This case of chemical contamination questions the potential health impacts of microplastic on babies' health. 

This study is particularly important because infants are more prone to chemical contamination. This study analyzed breast milk samples from mothers and then tested them for the presence of chemical contaminants such as microplastic. The results of the study got published in Journal Polymer.

This study was conducted in Italy in which breast milk samples were collected from 34 mothers one week after they gave birth. The samples were then analyzed for the presence of microplastic in the given sample. The study results indicated that 75% of the mother’s breast milk samples contained microplastic, a potential chemical contaminant. 


The scientists even recorded the consumption of foods and drinks of mothers as well as considered the use of plastic containing-personal hygiene products. All of this evidence suggested that exposure to microplastic remains inevitable. 

Previously, microplastic was also detected in the human placenta. “So the proof of microplastics’ presence in breast milk increases our great concern for the extremely vulnerable population of infants,” said Dr. Valentina Notarstefano,Università Politecnica delle Marche, Ancona, Italy.

She also said, “It will be crucial to assess ways to reduce exposure to these contaminants during pregnancy and lactation,” 

“But it must be stressed that the advantages of breastfeeding are much greater than the disadvantages caused by the presence of polluting microplastics. Studies like ours must not reduce breastfeeding of children, but instead, raise public awareness to pressure politicians to promote laws that reduce pollution.” Notarstefano further added.

The research study didn’t identify specific microplastic risk factors. Talking about the situation Dr. Notarstefano said that “We would like to advise pregnant women to pay greater attention to avoiding food and drink packaged in plastic, cosmetics, and toothpaste containing microplastics, and clothes made of synthetic fabrics.”