The placenta is the magical organ that women create as we build a human in our bodies (no big deal). This organ attaches to our uterine wall, and then connects to the baby via the umbilical cord. The amniotic sac is attached to the placenta, and holds the baby as it grows. The placenta is where we give all of our nutrients to baby through our own diet, as well as delivering oxygen and removing waste products.
Placenta encapsulation is a practice that is becoming more and more common as we become more health conscious, particularly, around the choices we make when it comes to labour and delivery. The placenta is rich in nutrients and can help balance our hormones post birth.
It is common practice in the animal kingdom to eat the placenta once it’s delivered, and if you google it, you will find lots of recipes you can use to eat your placenta too… I don’t think I can wrap my head around that, so the next best thing is encapsulation.
What does placenta encapsulation consist of?
Once the placenta is delivered (usually within the hour post birth), the placenta is handled by a professional (usually a doula) who has been trained in this practice. The placenta is chopped, dehydrated and then once in powder form, placed into capsules that you can begin to take as a supplement.
It is recommended to start taking the capsules 2 weeks post birth, as it may interfere with your breast milk coming in. You can then continue to take them daily until they are finished.
What are the benefits of using the placenta as a supplement?
There are many benefits to supplementing with placenta capsules. They are rich in iron which helps to replace the iron lost with the blood loss during child birth. They can also help increase milk production once it has already started to come in, improve energy, increase oxytocin (our feel good hormone), decrease depression and stress, as well as help to shrink the uterus back down to size.
There are so many reasons why we should be following the animals on this one.
How to find someone that can do this for you
I was lucky to be able to encapsulate my placenta before health Canada banned it. It’s unfortunate that this has happened, because it really did a world of benefit for me!
Health Canada declared that this practice runs the risk of bacterial infection if not done properly. I would argue that the same can be said for cooking chicken improperly.
Hopefully this ban will be lifted and we can continue to use this practice for all the wonderful benefits it can offer!