Written by my Fall 2015 apprentice, Jessica Baumgardner, this post is all about placenta encapsulation and how to do it!
Yeah – the entire organ isn’t just chillin’ in there. Don’t worry.
But I do have about 75 capsules of my placenta left in the freezer.
Before my daughter was born, in the midst of my constant googling of all things birth, I came across placenta encapsulation. People raved about it helping with the hormone imbalance and post-partum depression that came along in the first few days, weeks, or months after birth. Uh, yes, interested!
The body is so freaking amazing. Let’s break this down.
- A woman’s body literally grows a new organ to give a baby exactly what he/she needs every day until birth.
- The placenta is even examined post-birth because it can tell the story of your pregnancy.
- And then? It’s thrown in the trash! Gasp! The horror.
I held on to that sucker, even though everyone I told thought I was crazy. Here’s why:
- It contains small amounts of oxytocin (AKA the “love” or “bonding” or “cuddle” hormone) that helps you bond with your baby and eases the stress of birth.
- That oxytocin also stimulates the ejection of milk into the breast for nursing.
- The placenta can also help replenish depleted iron levels…
- …help the uterus return to pre-pregnancy state and …
- …overall balance post-pregnancy hormones!
Eating your placenta doesn’t have to be as gross as it sounds. PROMISE.
I had heard of people eating their placenta before but I assumed they dried and froze pieces of the organ and were adding it to their smoothies in the morning. Which some people do. But that totally grossed me out. Encapsulation was amazing because I wouldn’t have to taste it or look at it.
Here are the steps I took to make this happen:
1. I found someone certified in placenta encapsulation in my area and made arrangements.
2. She picked up the placenta from the hospital the day my daughter was born. I just had to make sure the midwife and staff knew that I wanted it saved. I brought a cooler with me to the hospital and the nurses helped me package it up with some ice (from the hospital). My husband received the call from the specialist and ran the cooler downstairs to her car waiting outside.
3. The placenta was cleaned, steamed, dehydrated, ground and then stuffed into capsules.
4. My capsules arrived in the mail in 3 days. Fortunately, the day I got home from the hospital! I’m sure some specialists will deliver them to you, but I was fine with this option.
And this jar of pills lasts freaking forever. I took 1-3 pills a day in the first week after delivery, and then tapered to 1 a day, and then to only if I felt weepy or emotional.
I probably only used half of what was produced and they are now living in my freezer for a rainy, hormone-y, PMS day. Or! 20 years from now when I’m menopausal. Actually, at 10.5 months post-partum, I’ve been back to taking 1-a-day to help with my declining milk supply as baby gets more interested in solid food.
Jessica Baumgardner, aka Health Coach Philly, is a Certified Holistic Health Coach who hates diets. Focused on women’s health, hormones, and fertility, she brings super-practical support to help ladies feel great, take care of their bodies, and actually enjoy the process.
Follow her on Instagram @healthcoachphilly or Facebook.