What we did:
Saved a piece of th placenta for smoothies
the rest was stripped of membranes, cut, steamed, and dried, then encapsulated
We used the smoothies for about 4 days postpartum. They were extremely potent at first, and a mix of about 1-2 cubic inches of placenta plus frozen mxed cherries, blackberries and blueberries plus yogurt and/or organic valley egg nog plus raw honey was actually quite tasty.
For the smoothies, the placenta needed to be blended with the liquids very well before adding the frozen fruit. (I'm allergic to strawberries and bananas, so we used other fruits.) This is gory, according to my 18 year old, who mixed most.
the smoothies were amazing for the first 3 days postpartum, but in the future I would not use them past that point. They weren't bad, they were just less effective than the capsules by day 4.
Immediate results: If I was starting to get weepy, the weepies stopped within moments of sipping the smoothie. My after pains got stronger, and my bleeding to less, within an hour.
My milk came in about 56 hours after the birth... which is pretty good when you consider I had a pitocin induction and epidural and a HUGE amount of IV fluid excess.
The placenta capsules have kept me on an even keel since. I take two every night, plus two extra if I'm feeling overly weepy at other times of day. Baby's been nursing and sleeping well.
I've had a tremendous amount of postpartum support, and I cannot overstate the helpfulness of this, but it alone would not have been 'enough' and I'm very glad I used placenta medicine. I'm 3 weeks postpartum now, and doing better than I did with either of my girls by a huge margin. Huge. I'm still taking placenta every day and I think I have enough for another week's worth.