Elisabeth Anderson-Sierra is a military veteran and the mother of two. She lives in Beaverton, Oregon, with her family and earned the nickname as the “milk goddess” because she produces so much breastmilk. Although some people might find such a nickname off-putting or bizarre, Elisabeth has become quite fond of it and has been helping other moms by donating her breastmilk. Elisabeth first realized that she was a milk “overproducer” back in 2014 when she had her first daughter, and since then, the rest has become history and local legend.
Because Elisabeth produces more breastmilk than her children could ever hope to consume, she donates the rest to interested mothers. The reason she is able to produce so much milk is that she has a condition, which she was diagnosed with, which is called hyperlactation. This condition makes her produce ten times as much breastmilk as average moms.
While Elisabeth produced a lot of breastmilk when her first child was born, when her second daughter came around, she was pumping five times per day every day. And when Elisabeth pumps, she pumps, producing far more breastmilk than an individual child needs.
Elisabeth, 29, produces about 17 gallons of breastmilk each day. She spends 10 hours of her day pumping to produce the sustaining supply.
As of June 2018, Elisabeth donated 53,535 ounces of breastmilk to other moms. This means she has unofficially beat the Guinness Book of World Records for the most ounces of breastmilk donated.
In a Facebook post, Elisabeth explained that she finds so much joy sharing her breastmilk around the world.
“This shipment marks a personal goal of mine and one of the reasons we are celebrating this month! Unofficially breaking the Guinness World Records for breastmilk donation to a milk bank ONLY. The current standing record is 53,081 oz. This shipment will put me at approximately 53,535 oz. To clarify, this is my personal donation count to a milk bank ONLY and doesn’t include any other donations.”
The boxes in the photo are filled with frozen breastmilk. She writes:
“Pictured is over 2,500 ounces going to Prolacta Bioscience in California for Micropreemies, and 800 ounces going to Puerto Rico for baby Joaquin to supply him for another month! I’ve also had 2 of my local families pick up 1,000 ounces each this afternoon. My freezer has breathing room again, and I have less anxiety about running out of room for a few weeks.”
Although she loves donating her breastmilk to help babies in need, it takes a lot of work.
“Everything revolves around the ball-and-chain pump,” she said. “There have been so many times I’ve broken down and hated everything about it. Wanting to quit and get my life back.”
Eventually, Elisabeth will have to hang up the pumps and move on with her life. However, until that day comes, she loves knowing that her hyperlactation condition helps other children in need besides her own.
“For me, it’s exciting to see the numbers, but even more exciting to think of all the babies and families I’ve been able to help,” she said.
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