I’ve had a lot of requests to write a blog post about placenta encapsulation, so, here it is. I’m not going to lie… I didn’t do a TON of research on this topic. I definitely researched it, but not for days on end. I will include some benefits, but after speaking to my doctor and others, I determined that consuming my placenta (I know, I know… totally disgusting thought) via pills wouldn’t hurt me and could potentially offer some pretty big benefits.
Here are the potential benefits:
- Help to balance your hormones
- Replenish depleted iron levels
- Assist the uterus to return to its pre-pregnancy state
- Reduce post-natal bleeding
- Increase milk production – this has been proven in a study
- Make for a happier, more enjoyable post-natal period
- Increase your energy levels
The cost to have my placenta encapsulated was $250. I went back and forth on the whole idea and ultimately, decided to go for it. It’s gross, but come on! That’s not the only gross thing I’ve ingested via medicine. For example, the cervadil that was inserted into my lady parts to help induce labor has bull sperm in it. Literal bull semen.
Anyway, I ended up deciding to do it. I went to a woman I was referred to by my doula and really, it was all quite simple. We provided a cooler and ice pack and the surgeons and/or nurses packaged it up, gave it to the doulas who delivered it to the encapsulation lady and voila! Three days later my giant, nasty looking organ was transformed into pills.
The pills weren’t a big deal to consume… although they had a funky burp taste… not far from Echinacea. Anyway, I ate them. So, the big question is, did it work?
Well, I really have no idea. But here’s what I know… I didn’t have any postpartum depression… not an ounce, I have milk for days, my bleeding was way manageable and I’ve had a great recovery. Would I have had the same recovery without the pills? Who knows! But in my mind, no harm, no foul.
I guess the big question is whether I’d do it again… And honestly, I don’t know? I honestly don’t feel any more passionate about it now than I did before I did it. I guess I’d do it again… No harm, no foul… Right?
As a sidenote, I have to share some hilarity that came with my placenta pill purchase. So, at my postpartum visit with the doulas, they brought my placenta pills and a couple other “gifts.” Gift number one…
Yes, that is a blood imprint of my placenta. Hang that one up in the nursery… huh?
Gift number two…
No big deal, that’s just the umbilical cord dried and shaped into a heart. The gift that every mother wants… Well, actually, it’s the gift that every pet wants. When we first received the gifts, we clearly did not know what to do with them – because who the… heck… wants a placenta-blood painting or umbilical cord jerky – so we decided to leave them in the nice little neon green gift bag and keep it on the fireplace ledge (aka… The I don’t know where else to put this spot).
One afternoon while Marky was reading to our sweetie pie, Oliver the Kitty got curious. He stuck his nose in the bag to check things out and got his head stuck in the handle. I’ve never seen anything so ridiculous. He lost his shit. He went running all the way down the stairs, jumped on top of the work bench and on the cabinet before the dang bag fell off of his neck.
Meanwhile, Toby struck gold. When we got back upstairs, we discovered that the umbilical cord must have fallen out of the bag in Ollie’s frantic dash, as it was clinched in Toby’s jaw. We grabbed Tobes, but he would not release. He clenched that thing for dear life growling all the way. I can’t remember how we ended up getting the cord back, but it was seriously hilarious.
Here’s a video of story time turned kitty nightmare (the silliness begins at about 2 minutes)…
I am not going to judge you, but working in labor and delivery we have had new moms ask for the placenta for many different reasons. I personally do not think I would ever do this but I do have a couple of questions about it as I have never really researched it myself. First off in your research, did you find any negative side effects or problems with taking the pills? Also did you research any other options, or are there any? (I ask this for women who cannot swallow pills, AKA me). Lastly is there any reason you would not be able to do placental encapsulation, for example, what if there was a placental abruption, or any problems with your delivery that would prevent them from being able to use your placenta? Thank you.
I am definitely not a placenta expert, but from my research (and after discussing it with my doctor), I found no real risk. As for consuming it in other ways, I’m sure there are other ways, but I am not familiar with them. I do wonder if you could pop open the capsule and stick it in a smoothie or something. And as for your last question, I would guess that there would be cases in which the placenta is not salvageable or not recommended for consumption, but that’s a total guess. Thanks for reading!
Thank you! I was just wondering if you had found anything in your research. We do not feel with it a lot where I work, but I have heard a lot about it and I was just curious!
No problem! And don’t worry, I’m used to getting questions about it. It’s weird… Weird sparks questions!
You’re braver than I am… I couldn’t go through with this. Ha, ha! But – hey – if you know it’s not going to hurt anything, then why not, right?? If there’s a chance that it might be beneficial or healthy, then it’s definitely worth considering!
And, hmmm, I had no idea that cervadil had bull sperm. Not that I would have refused it during my labor, because – at that point – I just wanted to get things started. Ha, ha. But still, that’s pretty insane!