I recently had an enlightening Q&A with Kim Racette of Angel Touch Doula. She answered some of my #AspiringMom questions about everything from tearing to surviving postpartum (Read that post here). One question I had was about ingesting the placenta. I’m sure you’ve heard of women doing this but it’s not just for super-crunchy, granola mommas–there are a lot of benefits waiting for us in that sort of nasty-looking thing.
Background Info: What is the placenta?
According to The Bump, the placenta is the intermediary between Momma’s body and Baby’s. It takes nutrients from Momma’s blood and makes them available for use by Baby through the connection of the umbilical cord. It also filters waste. Basically, it’s super important and without it, Baby would not be.
Here’s what Kim had to say: Placenta ingestion is super! (All comments in parenthesis are my own opinions)
First of all, the placenta can be prepared for smoothies (no thanks!) or dried and encapsulated (yes, please!). It’s becoming well known that ingesting your placenta has many benefits and is well worth the “you’re kidding right?” moment. The placenta is composed of a combination of hormone and healing components. To date, the known ingredients that give the placenta its healing properties are:
– Gonadotrophin: the precursor to estrogen, progesterone, and testosterone.
– Prolactin: promotes lactation.
– Oxytocin: for pain and bonding; produced during breastfeeding to facilitate 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 (This Hashimoto’s #AspiringMom will take a double-dose of that!)
– 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–which can contribute to postpartum depression–a common postpartum condition.
– Urokinase inhibiting factor and factor XIII: stops bleeding and enhances and speeds wound healing.
– Gammaglobulin: immune booster that helps protect against postpartum infections.
It’s a combination of several of these elements that (can help) eliminate postpartum depression. So, as you can see, the placenta is full of feel-good hormones and healing chemicals, making the first few months with your baby the happiest of your life!
Sold!: Here’s what to do if you want to reap the benefits
There are a few awesome doulas in Albuquerque that will take your placenta and make it ingestible (lasagna, anyone?). Or you can contact Kim herself! The cost is pretty minimal in my opinion, no more than many people pay for supplements their own body didn’t grow, and the benefits are vast!