Placenta Helps Boost Energy Levels and Heal Faster Post-Pregnancy
“There is such a special sweetness in being able to participate in creation.” -Pamela S. Nadav
Becoming pregnant and becoming a new mom is such a brand new world. I remember with my first pregnancy I had a huge desire to become more educated on all of it. It became so exciting to learn about how my body was adjusting and changing as a tiny new life was growing inside of me. I also began reading about child birth, the history of it, as well as the different ways a woman can labor and deliver. Check out my article on water birth here and read the exciting story of how I gave birth most recently to my second daughter. (Just to warn you, you may get emotional.)
As I was making my way through books, articles & videos I learned so much about the female body and birth in general that was so fascinating! One of the things that fascinated me the most was the organ that begins to grow inside your womb, along side your new baby, the entire pregnancy – the PLACENTA!
How magical is it that the moment that sperm and egg unite and cells begin dividing to create a new human baby, alongside that baby develops their very own placenta. This organ continues to grow and develop inside the womb for the next 9 months and is attached to baby via the umbilical cord. It’s purpose in this tiny new life is remarkable. The placenta is responsible for helping your baby breathe, and it actually delivers 100% of your babies much needed oxygen as it’s lungs and tissues are developing. The placenta is also responsible for getting baby their daily nutrition which is also crucial for growth and development. It even acts like a gland as it is the source of many necessary hormones during pregnancy which trigger the growth of the uterus, expansion of breast tissue in preparation for breast feeding, boosting mommy’s metabolism & creating an overall happy environment for baby to grow in.
Now here is the twist – right after baby is born, the placenta detaches from the inside of mama’s womb & follows baby right out! The body has no need for it any longer. But here is where humans and other mammals differ; almost all mammals in nature instinctively will eat their baby’s placenta after delivering them. But for us “civilized” creatures this is “gross” and so, in the western world we toss it into a yellow plastic bag marked “HAZARDOUS WASTE” and toss it out with the baby’s bath water. This really made me think – why do animals eat it? I’m sure not for its delicious taste. There must be a reason we are wired with that instinct. And of course us humans are clearly socially conditioned out of it, but the curiosity began to rise up in me – WHAT could the benefits possibly be of me eating my baby’s placenta?
As I dug into it more I learned that in traditional Chinese medicine, consumption of the placenta dates back to 1500s. Although the jury is still out on the exact benefits in the modern western world, there are lots of mamas around the world who are choosing to go ahead and get some of this organ back into their bodies (post-delivery) in various ways for the many proposed benefits.
I have viewed multiple testimonials and claims that consuming your baby’s placenta slowly over the following weeks after they are born could help to boost milk supply, regulate postnatal hormones (post baby blues), boost energy levels, help reduce postpartum bleeding & speed up overall healing for mommy. I was definitely interested in all those amazing benefits, but I can’t even stomach a steak that’s showing pink, so how in the heck was I going to ingest a raw organ?! Blaaak! I started to read more stories of different customs & consumption styles.
I read about one Chinese family that made a big soup with the placenta and the whole family had a feast together (wow, not happening). An Australian mama kept hers and cut it into little dime sized pieces then froze them separately in an ice cube tray and then would swallow them daily like a pill (eeeeeeek – still pretty creepy, but at least there’s no chewing). And lastly I discovered placenta encapsulation which is when the placenta is drained of blood, steamed, dehydrated, ground up & finally placed into pills (clear capsules) which you can swallow like a vitamin… PERFECT!! I was so down for that. So I text messaged my Doula and found out that this service ranges from about $200 to $250 and is surprisingly easy to find! There are lots of doulas or midwifes out there who are certified to do placenta encapsulation & often times they will also dry the cord for you in a cute heart shape as a keep sake. <3 (Anybody who isnt a mom right now is like omg ewwww haha – but we are creepy in love with our kids like that, sorry!) Many people who offer this service do it either in their own sterilized kitchen or can come do it in yours as well. They also will always come pick up the placenta from the hospital or birth center very soon after delivery, and drop the capsules off to you within a day or 2.
I have been pregnant twice now, have had 2 all natural births (one in a hospital and the most recent in the water at a birth center) and both times I’ve asked them to keep the placenta for me for encapsulating. I have had an amazing amount of milk supply and both times I have healed up quickly & never struggled with post partum blues. Can I say this was all 100% due to the placenta consumption? I can’t! But I can tell you that I experienced the same benefits many other mommies have and I encourage you to give it a shot as well. You have nothing at all to loose. One extra step I took this second time around was consuming a small raw piece (blended in a smoothie) as it’s known to have live stem cells which can do miraculous things inside your body. Weird coincidence I stopped bleeding in about half the time as I did with my first birth when I added in this raw live piece.
For San Diego expectant mothers, I would totally suggest contacting Trisha Olow of Zoe Bella Birth Services
who is an incredible Doula with loads of experience as well as a birth educator. I first met Trisha at my birth refresher class at Best Start Birth Center
in San Diego & was excited to learn she was not only just certified in Placenta Encapsulation – but she was a placenta fanatic! LOL. There is so much new research being done on this organ and the power it holds and we are really just beginning to understand it. I hired Trisha for my recent birth to encapsulate my placenta and she was amazing. She was very fast at getting me my pills and even brought them right to my house in a beautiful care package with all sorts of mommy goodies. She also gave me a placenta print, which is your placenta placed on a piece of water color paper before it’s drained.. they call it the “Tree of life” and it truly is so beautiful! You can contact Trisha via email at firstname.lastname@example.org
to learn more about her services and arrange for your own placenta to be encapsulated.
Have any mothers out there experienced placenta encapsulation? If not, would you consider it, or never in a million years? I would love to hear your opinion either way!