I know what you are thinking, ‘Do people really eat their own placenta?’. The answer is YES, the practice is called placentophagy.
Benefits of Ingesting Your Placenta
1. Decreases postpartum depression
2. Increases energy
3. Increases and enriches milk supply
4. Decreases postpartum bleeding
5. Helps increase iron levels
6. Helps with sleeping problems
Interesting Fact: Almost all mammals, with a few exceptions, will naturally and instinctively ingest their placentas after childbirth.
The placenta is rich in nutrients and filled with natural hormones that you quickly lose after childbirth. Ingesting the placenta helps balance that immediate loss and allows your body to slowly adapt to such a change. It is such a great way to help with postpartum healing naturally.
The known ingredients that give the placenta its healing properties (taken from placentabakery.com):
*Gonadotrohin – the precursor to estrogen, progesterone and testosterone
*Prolactin – promotes lactation
*Oxytocin – for pain and bonding; produced during breastfeeding to facilitates bonding of mother and infant. In pharmaceutical form this is a very addictive drug because it promotes a feeling of connectedness with others.
*Thyroid Stimulating Hormone – boosts energy and helps recovery from stressful events
*Cortisone – combats stress and unlocks energy stores
*Interferon – stimulates the immune system to protect against infections
*Prostaglandins – anti-inflammatory
*Hemoglobin – replenishes iron deficiency and anemia, a common postpartum condition
*Urokinase Inhibiting Factor and Factor XIII – stops bleeding and enhances wound healing
*Gammaglobulin – immune booster that helps protect against postpartum infections
There are a few ways people go about ingesting their placenta:
*Raw Dehydrated Method: The raw placenta is gently rinsed of blood clots. The cord and membranes are removed from the placenta. The placenta is sliced into small pieces and placed in a dehydrator at low temperatures between 110-120 degrees for 8 – 10 hours. Once completely dehydrated, the pieces are ground up into powder form and packed into capsules.
*Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) Method – The raw placenta is gently rinsed of blood clots. The cord and membranes are removed from the placenta. It is steamed with ginger and lemon organic herbs. The placenta is then sliced into small pieces and placed in a dehydrator at low temperatures between 110-120 degrees for 8-10 hours. Once dehydrated, the pieces are ground up into powder form and packed into capsules.
*Placenta Tinctures – A small pieces of the raw placenta is cut and placed in a jar of alcohol for 6 weeks. The jar is given a swirl once a day for those 6 weeks helping along the process of the medicinal qualities being drawn out of the placenta into the alcohol. After six weeks, the contents of the jar is strained of the solids into a bottle using some kind of filter. The result is a tincture.
*Placenta Ice Cubes – Small pieces of the placenta is placed in each cube section of an ice cube tray with water. The tray is placed in the freezer and once frozen, the cubes can be used for smoothies or anything else you’d like to put the ice cubes in.
*Dehydrated Placenta Powder – Just like the raw dehydrated method and TCM method, the placenta is placed in a dehydrator and ground up into powder. Instead of encapsulating the powder, it can be sprinkled while cooking, into teas, for smoothies, etc.
Here are some other websites for more information on ingesting your placenta and ways to do it.