Photo credit: Ashleigh Jei Bell Photography
You ate what?!
When you first heard of placenta encapsulation I’m sure you were grossed out, or at least took
pause. Perhaps you had little thoughts running around in your head. Why? How? Gross! I would
One thing I’ve learned as a parent is to never say never. I used to say I will never have THAT kid;
you know, the kid who is bouncing off of the walls and screaming in a restaurant. The child who
sleeps in my bed. The one who breastfed until age 3.
I was wrong. I was naive. It’s so easy to say “I will never” to anything you’re inexperienced
with. The reality of the situation is this: you truly don’t know what you will do until you’re in it,
wading through, surviving.
So yeah, I’m sure the thought of placentophagy (ingesting your placenta) has at least been a
little off putting to you. It’s not everyday someone exuberantly volunteers to eat their placenta.
So who does it and why?
Who does it?
Many women who choose to consume their placenta are typically second time moms. They
usually had a rough postpartum period after their first birth and likely experienced postpartum
depression (PPD) – sometimes not realizing that’s what they were experiencing until months or
years later (it’s tricky and hard to see it when you’re in the fog). Or maybe the mother realized
that she was, in fact, experiencing PPD but did not know how to speak up and reach out for
help. Perhaps she experienced embarrassment and felt like a failure, or perhaps admitting that
she had PPD would have felt like defeat. Worse yet, she might have feared seeking medical
attention would result in her child being taken away, ultimately deemed an unfit mother (none
of these hold an ounce of truth, by the way).
If you’re a first time mom, learn from the moms who came before you. It would be wise to be
precautious and consider encapsulation. It would certainly benefit you if you were to
experience more than just the baby blues, but there are many more benefits aside from
warding off ppd. There is a lot of anecdotal evidence that supports the positive benefits of
placental consumption. Some of these benefits include:
- Increased energy
- Stabilized hormones
- Restoration of Iron levels
- Increased production of milk
- Replenishment of lost nutrients
- An increase in CRH, a stress reducing hormone
- Reduction in postpartum bleeding (severity and duration)
- A boost in Oxytocin (increased bonding and decreased pain)
You can also have a tincture (liquid extract) made with a small piece of your placenta. Your
tincture will last for decades (if stored and handled properly) and can be replenished while still holding potency. The tincture can be used:
- During menstruation
- For your teething baby
- During times of stress and transition.
- During menopause (helps with the hormonal hot flashes, mood swings etc.)
- When weaning. A lot of women tend to feel the effects of weaning physically, mentally
What Other Moms are Saying
“I was never moody, my birth high lingered for days, my lochia or postpartum bleeding stopped
by 4 days postpartum, nursing was amazing. All I can say is that my baby moon was phenomenal
with #2 and I was so very thankful for my pills. I NEVER experienced what I did with my first.” –
- Staci, third time mom (1)
"I am so glad I decided to have my placenta encapsulated for my second pregnancy. For my first
pregnancy I had postpartum depression and was prescribed an anti-depressant. I also had
trouble breastfeeding due to a low supply. A few days after giving birth to my second child I
noticed I was starting to feel weepy. My pills happened to arrive the same day and I started
taking them right away. From that point on I never had any issues with mood swings or
depression. I noticed I had a lot of energy, despite not sleeping very much. In fact, people who
visited us kept commenting on how great I looked and how much energy I had. I have not had
any issues with breastfeeding this time around either. I have recommended placenta
encapsulation to my friends who are pregnant. My recovery was a breeze as well. I would
definitely do this again"
- Alicia, second time mom (2)
"The capsules have been a lifesaver, as far as I can tell. When they were delivered, I was still
waiting for my milk to come in and feeling anxious and exhausted. The baby had been seen at
the pediatrician's office that morning, four days after her birth, and had lost 13 oz, bringing her
weight down to 7 lbs. I took the first dose right after you left and within hours my milk came in
and the next day I was feeling more energized and less stressed. I have had no problem with
milk production-- indeed, I am dripping with it!-- nor have I had any wild hormonal mood swings;
I feel fairly balanced. I believe this has helped me bond more closely with my baby and my
husband, which I am very thankful for! In addition, the baby fed so well that by her two week
checkup (1.5 weeks after I began taking the capsules), she had gained back all the weight she
lost in the first few days. I would most definitely recommend encapsulation to my family and
- Liz, first time mother of Josefina (2)
"I had my placenta encapsulated with my second baby. I wish I had done it with my first. My
recovery was so much quicker this time around. My milk supply is great and my son sleeps so
much better than my first did. One day I forgot to take the capsules and I noticed that I was
more irritable and that my baby slept worse. I made sure to not forget to take them again. I feel
great for having an active 2 1/2 year old and 6 week baby. I'm definitely recommending this to
all my pregnant friends. And if we decide to go for a third, I will definitely do this again!”
- Mom to two (2)
What harm is done if you ingest your placenta? There really are no drawbacks. You may say to
yourself ‘well all of the women who think they are experiencing positive results are crazy. It’s
just a placebo effect!’ So let’s play devil’s advocate. IF it is a placebo effect, apparently it’s a
powerful one that is truly working. The outcome is still the same, no?
Ultimately, it would be far better to have placenta capsules and a tincture if you find you need
them than to need them and not have them. Your placenta is bio specific to your needs and
cannot be replaced or purchased. Placenta encapsulation makes consumption a palatable and
If you are still unsure, double bag your placenta with gallon sized freezer Ziploc bags and place
it in the freezer. This should be done within 72 hours of delivery (placing in fridge or on ice
within 3 hours). It is best to encapsulate or make a tincture within 6 months of freezing. If you
find yourself weepy, emotional, exhausted and in dire need of help, locate a placenta
encapsulator immediately. You’ll be glad you did.
Signed - Your Specialists at Eternal Blossom Birth and Beyond
Staci Campbell & Brooke Widener
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