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Placenta Encapsulation?

post #1 of 40
Thread Starter 

Is anyone planning this for your birth?  I am- I have a specialist lined up but my friend said she's been wanting to do it (and I know it's easy to do at home, I am just not at all interested in doing it myself... I'm vegetarian and can hardly handle looking at raw meat so the thought of cutting up my own placenta freaks me out)  so I think I'll let her take care of it.  I've heard so many great things about the benefits- I don't think I could do smoothies like some women do (again, vegetarian, totally freaked out by raw "meat") but the pills are something I can definitely handle.  I had a great recovery period with DS1 but I certainly want to make this as wonderful a recovery as possible and will need all the energy I can get while caring for a toddler and newborn.  


post #2 of 40

I can't stomach the idea of ingesting it. (Also a vegetarian, and yeah, it just totally freaks me out.) If I were to do it, it'd have to be encapsulated.


A friend of mine's dad and step-mom are police officers, and the step-mom works with cadaver-searching dogs. They can use placentas to train the dogs, so I'm going to donate mine to them. It's a little tricky, though, because DH is freaked out by the idea of it going in our freezer, so I'm going to try to remember to have my MW take it, then get it at my 2 week check up and take it straight to my friend's house.

post #3 of 40
Thread Starter 

Cool idea!  



Originally Posted by meesh933 View Post

I can't stomach the idea of ingesting it. (Also a vegetarian, and yeah, it just totally freaks me out.) If I were to do it, it'd have to be encapsulated.


A friend of mine's dad and step-mom are police officers, and the step-mom works with cadaver-searching dogs. They can use placentas to train the dogs, so I'm going to donate mine to them. It's a little tricky, though, because DH is freaked out by the idea of it going in our freezer, so I'm going to try to remember to have my MW take it, then get it at my 2 week check up and take it straight to my friend's house.


post #4 of 40

Totally freaks me out. I buy in to all the benefits and everything and I've got a friend who's going to encapsulate mine but I think I will donate the pills. She says other moms will want them. I'm still trying to talk myself into taking them myself but I'm so not there yet.

post #5 of 40

I am a vegetarian, and I encapsulate placentas for other women too ( part of the services I offer as a doula). I LOVE it and I have seen firsthand AND experienced the benefits! I will be doing my own after this birth as well.

post #6 of 40

So I had every intention of ingesting part of ds' placenta last time, but coudn't get myself to do it.  Then it was too late (the hormonal qualities only last about 2 months).  So I decided to plant it in the garden come spring.  But then we found out we were moving and I didn't want to leave it in Maryland and move away.  So it sat in my freezer for 18 months.   I realized I had to do something with it in order to move it across the country.  So I dried it in the oven overnight and again for hours the next day, crushed it, and mixed it with dirt which I put in a container and brought with us.  I am a vegetarian and found this process unpleasant.  In hindsight I should have steamed it first, sliced it, and then dried it in the oven b/c the oven drying process took forever and really smelled up the house during the day (at night it was fine).  Ugh.  Not great to my pregnant nose.  At anyrate, if your know a meat eater who is willing to do the steam and slicing part, the oven drying overnight is not bad.  Then it's just a crushing or grinding process, which wouldn't be hard.  You can purchase encapsulation kits or just do it by hand.  But if you've found someone who will do it at a good price then I'm sure that's preferrable!


I'm not sure what I plan to do this time.  I haven't settled on a mw yet, so I'm not sure if that would be one of the services she could provide or not.  We'll see!

post #7 of 40

Definitely encapsulating again this time! Had 2 months of pp bleeding with dd's 1&2. Took placenta pills after dd3, and had less than 2 weeks of bleeding! Milk came in faster and I had more energy, too!

post #8 of 40

I am! We are able to barter some yard work in exchange.

post #9 of 40

I'm also a vegetarian and raw meat is absolutely revolting to me.  But what I did with DS was have DH cut off a few chunks of placenta and blend it in a smoothie with fresh orange juice, a banana, and strawberries.  The smoothie was already red from the strawberries and thick from the banana.  The only difference from a regular smoothie I could discern was a very slight metallic aftertaste.  It was totally doable.  I'm going to do it the same way again this time.  I'm planning on making a placenta print with the rest of it and then planting it somewhere.  Encapsulation is just way too complicated for me!

post #10 of 40
Thread Starter 

Oh man, I could NOT do a smoothie.  I've even heard of some women eating a raw chunk of it immediately after birth, then processing the rest.  I can't imagine EVER doing that.  Gag!

post #11 of 40

A friend cut hers into pinkie nail sized bits and put them into the freezer and just took it that way. For me, I have to encapsulate. I can't stomach the thought of ingesting the placenta, but if you grind anything up and put it in a capsule I can take it. I could never eat fish, but I take tons of fish oil because it's just swallowing a pill. Same thing with the placenta.

post #12 of 40

I'm also going the berry smoothie route.  At first I was revolted by the idea of ingesting it raw, but encapsulation around here is kinda expensive and the thought of cooking it makes me queasy.  My (vegan) MW is a pro at making these smoothies and as long as I think of the red strawberries I'm pretty sure I can down it.  

Edited by Caracol8 - 8/31/11 at 4:16pm
post #13 of 40

jbk - once again, we're on the same page!


I'm vegan, and while animal products/meat are totally not a part of my life, I have no problem with eating my own placenta. I did NOT always feel this way!  When I first heard of ingesting the placenta, I thought that it was something I'd NEVER do in ANY form.  But I am definitely prone to depression, and petrified of PPD, and honestly, I'd eat the whole thing raw if it helped me avoid PPD!  I had such wretched depression my first trimester that the placenta seems more and more appealing the more I hear about the mental and emotional benefits.


I plan to use a small chunk in a smoothie, if possible, right after birth, and encapsulate the rest.  I'm really lucky that there are lots of doulas in the area who do encapsulation.  The only reason I want to go the smoothie route right away is so that I can get some into my system asap. 

post #14 of 40

I WANT to encapsulate my placenta this time, since I'll be at home, but I have no idea how to care for it or dry it in order to encapsulate it. Is there anyway I can buy empty capsules at a pharmacy for it?

post #15 of 40

I found a good method for first time encapsulators.(I'm really excited to be able to do this!) Here it is:


Supplies Needed:
Steamer for stove top
Fresh ginger and lemon
Cutting Board,
I recommend disposable cutting boards from Cut N Toss
Capsules, 150-200
I use a Nesco American Harvest
Food Processor or Coffee Grinder
Sanitizer and bleach

1. First take placenta, place in colander in sink. Rinse under cold water removing and blood clots.


2. Place on cutting board and severe cord at base. It may bleed a little bit. If you prefer to to the raw method you would thinly slice the placenta after you have cleaned it. Laying the slices on dehydrator trays(or in the oven), keeping the temp below 118F to preserve maximum nutrients and keep enzymes intact.


Placenta Love

2. If you are steaming it on the stove, wrap placenta membrane fetal side around placenta into a ball. Place lemon & ginger in water in steamer. Put placenta in steam basket and cover. Steam on medium for about 15mins on *each side*. Bleed whiling steaming. Slice up placenta into thin strips at this point. If you are using a low oven to dehydrate your placenta, set oven to lowest temp. It takes 6-8hrs to dehydrate depending on method used.


Bleeding the steamed placenta



Steamed sliced placenta. Try to keep all strips uniform in thickness and length so they dehydrate evenly. I would then cut these in half again. Slice as thinly as possible.


3. Preparing dehydrator, lining trays with wax paper for easier clean up. Place in dehydrator for about 6-8hrs.

My dehydrator, Nesco American Harvest.



Dehyrated Placenta Strips. Anyone for placenta jerky? ;O) Make sure you break this up to smaller pieces so the grind easier.


4. Using a strong grinder, grind placenta strips. I hear magic bullet works well. You may need to break dehydrate strips in half prior to grinding. I broke a coffee mill this way and had to "donate" my food processor to the cause. During the grinding process add dried herbs if desired. Per mother's request I will add one of the 3 herb blends I offer; "Mood Boost", "Iron Boost" or "Milk Boost". The blends have 3-4 herbs in them. I call placenta powder that has been blended with herbs "Power Placenta Pills", they pack a punch!  I add about 1/4 weight of herbs of the total placenta volume. A little goes a long way :O)

I would also encourage you if you to try the herbs prenatally individually to make sure you dont have any adverse reactions to them prior to adding them to your placenta powder. Otherwise you may end up wasting your placenta pills if you had herbs to them that cause an adverse reaction - that would be a bummer!



5. Fill capsules. One placenta will yield *about 125-175 capsules*. You can use The Capsule Machine or Cap M Quik, it can be done by hand. I use capsule size "00". There are smaller size capsules available. The picture to the top is just placenta powder and herbs blended together.


The picture below is placenta powder blended with herbs.


6. Store capsules in refrigerator, they will keep indefinitely. How many to take in the PP period depends on the mother and her needs. I recommend 3 capsules twice a day for two weeks. If mom has a history of PPD I recommend 3 capsules three times a day for a full two weeks. The following week she can cut back her capsules to once a day or two capsules twice a day.

If mom is feeling run down, fatigued, low supply or emotionally fragile increase dosage. You can always take more a few months down the road if you need a "pick me up". 

post #16 of 40

DD3's placenta must've been freaking huge. We got 206 pills from hers!

post #17 of 40

Did anyone that did encapsulation add herbs to theirs? I am really interested in seeing results of mixing dried herbs with the placenta.

post #18 of 40

I'm also a vegetarian and was really grossed out by the idea of eating my placenta. I had planned on having it encapsulated or planting it under a tree, but I ended up with postpartum hemorrhaging and my midwife insisted I take the placenta ASAP. Her assistant cut off some chunks and blended them in a smoothie with bananas and dark berries and I actually could barely taste a difference (except for a slightly metallic aftertaste, like Viriditas said.) I was also so caught up in the moment and focused on my new baby that I could have eaten just about anything at that point without caring. Immediately after my smoothie, I stopped feeling lightheaded and shortly after the PP bleeding decreased quite a bit. I continued taking the rest of the placenta over the next few days (a friend of mine was kind enough to prepare more smoothies) and felt immediately more energized afterwards. As long as you have someone else prepare it, I think taking your placenta ASAP offers the most benefits, although encapsulation is also a great way to go.

post #19 of 40

Out of curiosity, can anyone explain what slicing a raw placenta is like? I mean, what kind of consistency does it have? I saw a placenta for the first time last weekend (at my friend's homebirth) and I also looked at the photo a pp posted above. The placenta looks like a big sack of blood! But I guess it must have more structure to it (like a muscle would) if you can just slice pieces off while raw? I'm interested in making a smoothie after my birth with some of it. I really want to have it encapsulated but it's kind of expensive around here... around $250 I believe. I'm not sure if I trust myself doing the dehydrating and all of that myself, either. I'll just end up paying to have it encapsulated if I can't stomach any of it raw, but I really want to work up the courage to eat some right away. I've had this strong feeling throughout my pregnancy that this placenta is going to be a miracle for me and my state of health.

post #20 of 40

I posted above about how to do it yourself, if you have the stomach for it. I can't afford to have someone else do it either, and am going to do it myself. I also plan on having the ingredients for a smoothie ready and waiting in the freezer at week 39, so I can just take it out to thaw while I'm laboring and it can be blended right away after I deliver the placenta.


And if you don't have the stomach for it, you just might have someone there who can help you with it. I've gutted several animals while hunting and did my own meat processing for them, so I'm sure I'll be able to do it. lol

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