The placenta is a truly amazing organ, grown throughout pregnancy to nourish and give life to the baby and then it is no longer needed post birth so is often destroyed…but what if you could get some more benefits from it for the postnatal period?!
You may of heard of consuming your placenta but don’t know too much about it, I am going to give a quick overview of some different methods used and the potential benefits you could gain from your amazing placenta.
Research is still limited on this topic but anecdotal evidence shows us that consumption of the placenta can have great results in those first post birth weeks. This could be explained by the placebo effect…but if you feel benefits then who cares I say!!! Such benefits could include:
- Improved mood and energy levels
- Improved milk supply
- Reduced post birth bleeding
- Replenishing important micronutrients like iron
- Reduction in postnatal depression symptoms (PND) via hormone delivery.
If you choose to keep the placenta for consumption then there are some different ways to do this. Of course eating it raw, most people who choose this will make a smoothie to make it more palatable with some yummy fruits and veggies. Tinctures are also a simple and very long lasting method as can be used in the first year post birth. This is made with a piece of raw placenta being steeped in alcohol and then a drop of the liquid can be placed under the tongue for the benefits.
But the most common and possibly easiest way to consume postnatally will be via encapsulation. There are two ways the placenta is prepared for this and they have slightly different effects.
Raw Method – The raw method of placenta encapsulation is when the placenta is cleaned and then dehydrated followed by encapsulation.This method is said to retain all the vitamins and hormones, as there is no cooking. It’s also meant to pack more of a punch energy wise. Generally, there is a higher yield with this method, so therefore they last longer.
TCM (Traditional Chinese Medicine) – This method is when the placenta is cleaned and then gently steamed with ginger, chilli and lemon prior to dehydration and encapsulation. This method is said to have a warming effect and more of a slow release of the benefits. Steaming the placenta also kills any potential bacteria so the capsules can have a longer shelf life, but there is some belief that this may also lessen the beneficial effects by decreasing the levels of vitamins and hormones during the steaming process. This method is recommended for people prone to anxiety as the RAW method can be too strong.
Hopefully this has given you some information to get you started or even considering using those potential benefits available to you which might help you in those early post birth days!