Yes, I’m Ingesting My Placenta

I hope you all had a great weekend.  Our weekend was low-key and perfect.  We saw friends, went out to dinner for some dates, did some yard work and hung out together as a family.  It was the perfect weekend.

I missed my Friday post, but here we are today with a random topic about placenta encapsulation.  A lot of people think it sounds weird, hippy-ish and/or disgusting, but I’m here to show you that there really are great benefits of this!

We are the only mammal species that doesn’t ingest it’s placenta soon after giving birth.  That’s not a coincidence in my opinion.  Ingesting your placenta is a traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) practice that has been done for thousands of years.  Naturally, as a TCM practitioner, I thought this was an excellent way of recovery.


The benefits:

  • Stops bleeding
  • Increase breast milk supply
  • Boost iron
  • Increase vitamin B and other vitamin/mineral stores in the body
  • Reduce risk of post-partum depression
  • Stabilize mood

Unfortunately, there are no big well-controlled Western medical studies on these benefits, but for me the potential benefits are enough for me to do it.  It’s not that expensive or a big hassle, so what the heck?!

How Do I Encapsulate My Placenta?

There are many ways to do this.  I am taking my placenta (or my mom is) to a placenta encapsulation specialist.  For the TCM recipe, she steams the placenta.  The TCM way adds Chinese herbs to the mixture.  As per the Mama Prana website (this is the one I’m using), here is the method:

“Following a Traditional Chinese Medicine recipe, I gently steam the placenta. This method creates a remedy that is tonifying, warming and balancing for the new mother as TCM practitioners believe that women should consume only warming foods and beverages after birth, to rebuild vital Qi energy and balance the Yin and Yang. I then dehydrate the placenta, grind it into a fine powder, and encapsulate it. This remedy promotes a gentle, sustained rise in energy and emotional well-being production as the new mother recovers from the birth. Although placenta encapsulation is a relatively new method of ingesting the placenta, the Traditional Chinese Medicine model has been using placenta medicines safely and successfully used for over a thousand years.”

She also makes placenta salves and tinctures as well as encapsulates the placenta without Chinese herbs.

How Do I Get My Placenta?

All I have to do is sign a release form at the hospital and bring a cooler to put it in to take to her.  Some hospitals are easier than others to have your placenta released to you, so check in with yours if you’re interested.

When I’ve told both my midwife and doula that I wanted to do this, they both congratulated me and were more than supportive.  They said they’ve seen it work wonderfully and think it’s a great idea!

I have one issue with this and that’s the fact that I have to take coumadin.  The placenta encapsulation specialist and her TCM mentor are being extra cautious and don’t want me to take these pills until 120 days after I go off my 6 week dose of coumadin.  This puts me at several months after delivery, but that doesn’t mean that all of the nutrients will be void in the pills when I am ready to take them.  Although I won’t get the nutrients immediately, I will still receive the benefits a couple months later.  I have other remedies such as moxa (another TCM practice) for right after delivery.

So, that’s it for that one… I hope you found it at least educational and I opened some minds into this!

Leave a reply