placenta encapsulation! who's doing it, who's done it!? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 35 Old 11-02-2010, 11:50 PM - Thread Starter
 
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ok ladies!

so i was talking to my midwife at our last appt and asking about postpartum depression because my emotions have been all over the place during this pregnancy and im alittle worried that it may carry over after baby arrives. the first thing my midwife suggested was that i consider eating the placenta

after i picked my jaw up off the floor and consoled my dp who was basically doing everything he could to control his gag reflex, we talked more about the benefits and i kinda came around to the idea. now there's no way im eating it in a stew or in some sort of pot roast (am i still a vegetarian if i eat my own placenta??).. but i could totally pop a few a day in pill form.. especially if it'll be a sure fire way to keep the baby blues away.

what are the other benefits?

i found a few ladies in my area that will prepare the capsules for me for a hefty fee... but better them than me!

anyone else thinking of doing it? or did it?? weigh in and tell me it was the best thing you ever did. EVER.

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#2 of 35 Old 11-03-2010, 12:37 AM
 
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#3 of 35 Old 11-03-2010, 06:32 AM
 
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I've done this after my previous two births and I plan to do it after every birth now! It really was amazing the difference it made during my PP period. I was very level emotionally-no major mood swings like I experienced after my first. Plus my milk came in by day 3 and my lochia only lasted about 10 days.

A few hours after birth I made a placenta smoothie-washed placenta (to get out the blood), then blended it up with yogurt and frozen strawberries. After the first day I encapsulated the rest.

I know there have been threads simliar to this in the past...you can try doing a search.

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#4 of 35 Old 11-03-2010, 10:33 AM
 
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I learned about encapsulation right here in the PPD forum. I went through a long thread entitled something like "eating your placenta to prevent ppd?" It had at least 15 pages if not more. The best information was in the first few pages.

I encapsulated my own after my sixth baby in 2007. I started taking the caps 24 hours after she was born, and never even got the third day blues. I physically felt great, and did very well emotionally. Then I started offering the service locally. I encapsulated after my seventh, and I did find the caps to be helpful, but I still ended up struggling a bit with my mood after I ran out. Physically, however, I still got a great boost from the caps. They are fantastic at promoting good postpartum healing.

If you go to http://www.placentabakery.com you can find a great list of the benefits of consuming your placenta in caps. It's right there on the front page. You can also find someone who is local to you who can do it. I'm not sure what constitutes a "hefty" fee to you, but the PBi certified encapsulators tend to run a bit more than the independent encapsulators.

I couldn't recommend it enough...and am very much looking forward to using my placenta after my eighth baby is born in April. :-) I'm thinking of trying a tincture, smoothies, and ointments this time, in addition to caps. Maybe that can make my small placentas go further!
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#5 of 35 Old 11-03-2010, 10:41 AM
 
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I did it... I was amazed at the results. I had so much energy after taking them... I still have some left and take them when I need a little pick-me-up...

I made my own and it was really easy... (even the day after I had given birth)

I documented the process here (warning pic of a placenta )

 
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#6 of 35 Old 11-03-2010, 10:55 AM
 
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I did it! I had horrible PPD with my first DD and was desperate to try anything the second time around. I thought about doing it ourselves, but after seeing what was involved, decided I really didn't want to deal with that along with a new baby and a big sister. I found (by recommendation here in my tribal forum) a local person who would do it for $150. She was wonderful... we played phone tag a bit and I talked her here about 4 hours before DD was born and she still agreed to help me out!

She told me how many to take in the beginning... I think it was 2 three times a day for a few days, then 2 twice a day for a week, or something like that. After that I took one per day, and my DD is 6.5 months and I'm almost out! I think I had 187 capsules.

Did it help? I think so, but it's a little hard to say with certainty. The pregnancy and birth were totally different than the first time around, so I think that impacted the post-partum period for sure. Plus I'm still on a very low dose of sertraline (which I started after DD1 was born, about 3 years ago), so I'm sure that's playing a role.

At the same time, DD2 was a far more challenging baby with health and feeding issues, so the babymoon was very stressful yet I handled it all with no trouble at all. The transition back to work was also hard, but again, much better than before. So I have to confess, I'm a believer! I will definitely be doing this again if we have any more babies.

PS: I read somewhere eating placenta doesn't contradict most vegetarian priciples, since nothing was raised or killed to produce it.

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#7 of 35 Old 11-03-2010, 11:17 AM
 
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I encapsulated my placenta because I had previous experience with mild depression. I had a homebirth and my husband did it since I was stuck in bed with a tear. I took the pills for about a week and felt good emotionally and then I decided to stop to see how I would be. I had no change in my mood after stopping the pills so I didn't take any more. I thought for sure that I of all people would need what the placenta offers, but did not. The rest of them are still in the back of my fridge since I can't bring myself to throw them out. I may try them again once my cycle/PMS returns. It was my first birth and I was glad to have them just in case, but I probably won't do it in future births. I would recommend doing it (or paying someone else to) for the first birth just to see how things go. I talked to my midwife about my suprise at NOT having PPD, since I thought I was a prime candidate, and she said she was not suprised at all since I was so happy about being pregnant and had good support for after the birth. Good support goes a long way at that time, though I'm sure some women still experience PPD in that situation. Happy birth!

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#8 of 35 Old 11-03-2010, 11:19 AM
 
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Subbing! I had PPD with my first and I am planning on encapsulating my placenta this time around in effort to make it through without PPD this time.

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#9 of 35 Old 11-03-2010, 11:36 AM
 
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I've already decided I'll probably do it even though I've yet to see any studies whatsoever. As far as I have been able to determine, it can't hurt me, so even if I can get some placebo effect, that's fine with me. I have a history of mood issues, so what the heck.

BTW, I believe the consensus among vegetarian moms is that no animal gave its life (or part of itself without consent), so yes, you can still eat it as a vegetarian.
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#10 of 35 Old 11-03-2010, 01:38 PM
 
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I had wicked PPD after DD1 was born and had my placentas encapsulated after the births of DD2 and DS2. No PPD those times and I recovered much quicker.

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#11 of 35 Old 11-03-2010, 07:21 PM - Thread Starter
 
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so glad to hear so many women have done this with success! i'm uber excited about it!

yeah.. upwards of $100 to make my placenta into a pill is alot of money and someone quoted me $150. I thought that it was pretty steep seeing as how im the one providing most of the material.. but i guess its worth it because i certainly couldn't imagine doing it myself. kudos to you awesome mamas with strong stomachs braving through it!

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#12 of 35 Old 11-03-2010, 08:37 PM
 
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Quote:
PS: I read somewhere eating placenta doesn't contradict most vegetarian priciples, since nothing was raised or killed to produce it.
Yep - I believe it's even technically vegan, because it was willingly given.

I did it. I still have some left, actually. I believe it did help. I made DH do the, er, processing. I guess I'll do it again this time...

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#13 of 35 Old 11-03-2010, 09:28 PM
 
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I don't have a strong stomach (I gag when touching raw chicken) but I didn't have a problem encapsulating mine myself after DS2 was born. DH, OTOH, is very squeamish so I did it when he wasn't home.

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#14 of 35 Old 11-03-2010, 09:59 PM
 
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I had mine in smoothies in the first PP week and I felt great--tremendous energy and the transition from one child to two was so easy. I'm definitely going to do it every time.

I do not get PPD anyway, but the placenta is so valuable beyond that. It balances your hormones so you recover well, feel good, etc. As pp said, milk tends to come in sooner and pp bleeding ends sooner. I haven't seen anything about how it effects a nursing baby but I'd bet it's killer good for them too. Let's give them and us every benefit nature has to offer!

I'm a picky eater and won't eat liver, for example. But I had a friend come and chop up the placenta into ice cube sized pieces the day of the birth and freeze them. In a smoothie with OJ and strawberries, it tasted like strawberry smoothie and I didn't have any problem!

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#15 of 35 Old 11-04-2010, 12:20 AM
 
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I had mine encapsulated and it's awesome. My mood is so much more mellow and level than it was after I had DD1. I didn't have PPD with her, but I was verging on it and this time I feel great emotionally.

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#16 of 35 Old 11-04-2010, 11:52 AM
 
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I am having an unwanted but planned c-section tomorrow (placenta previa). I didn't suffer PPD after DS, but did have some bad days, and it took FOREVER (it seemed) for my milk to come in. So I am having my HB mw (now sadly reduced to doula) is going to encapsulate my placenta for me (and she does it on a sliding scale $40-100). My biggest fear/problem is it is hospital policy to keep the placenta for a week after the birth. We are hoping to sign it out AMA

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#17 of 35 Old 11-04-2010, 12:09 PM
 
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I've done this after my second birth. First birth was bad recovery and PPD. Second birth recovery was amazing and no PPD at all, not even baby blues and my hormones seemed great. I also offer the service to women in IA and MN. I think it's just truly amazing.

Benefits include

~ Faster recovery for mom
~ Healthy breastmilk supply
~ Helps avoid baby blues and PPD
~ Helps with iorn levels
~ Helps maintain hormones

Can also be used during your period to help with bloating, cramps, and hormones. Can also be used during menopause to help balance hormones.

~Attatchment and Natural Parent from instincts not from books to my 2 boys~ Childbirth Educator & Placental Encapsulation Professional
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#18 of 35 Old 11-04-2010, 02:04 PM
 
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I've done it after both births and can't recommend it highly enough. I'm prone to severe depression and anxiety and figured if anyone would get PPD, it'd be me. But my moods post-partum have been stable and my milk always comes in on the second day. I'm ten days post-partum today and my lochia is nearly gone.

Right after the birth I have a raw thumb-sized piece in a smoothie to help with any potential hemorrhaging and to boost colostrum production. Then we take the rest to the kitchen and start getting it ready to dry and encapsulate.

I can understand why someone would want to pay to have it dried and encapsulated, but it's very doable at home. After the midwife examines it, just rinse it gently (but not too thoroughly--you don't want to rinse out all of the blood) in cool running water, slice it into small strips, put the strips on a cookie sheet or two and stick it in the oven at 200 F with the oven door cracked open for 8-10 hours, however long it takes. You want the pieces to be hard and brittle at the end; if they're still bendy give it some more time to totally dry out.

Once the pieces are completely dry, grind them up in a a coffee grinder or food processor and stuff 00-sized caps (available at any health food or vitamin store) full of the powder. Keep the caps in a baggie or jar in a cool, dry, dark place (mine live in my nightstand drawer) and take as needed. Easy and free.

I take two with each meal and two before bed the first week, and then drop it down to two twice a day after that. Last pregnancy they lasted me about six months; this time they may go farther as I haven't found I've needed them nearly as much. (Much easier delivery and I have a lot more post-partum support this time.)

Good luck, however you do it! I have to admit I kind of enjoy the shock value of telling people what those pills are if they ask, or casually mentioning that I eat my placenta after every birth.

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#19 of 35 Old 11-05-2010, 04:43 AM
 
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Add me to the list!! I can say without a doubt that it has made a tremendous difference in my energy level! I have low thyroid to begin with so I'm run down and tired in general. I've been amazed at how well I'm recovering right now (almost two weeks PP) and how good I feel!

I've never had PPD but during my early days PP with my first two, I would get anxious thoughts about someone hurting their baby or neglecting it (avoid watching the news at all costs when you have a tiny baby...it's just bad) and just sob. I remember being scared to tell my husband about how upset I was because I thought I'd sound crazy or unstable. This time around, I get those thoughts in passing but I'm able to quickly put them out of my mind and they don't affect me the same way.

And my milk!! HELLO!! I always had milk that looked like fat free (random I know but that's the best way I can describe it) and now I'd say I have a solid 1% maybe even 2% milk! It's definitely thicker and my baby only lost 1/10th of an ounce her first week!

The woman who encapsulated my placenta charges $100-$200 on a sliding scale but I don't really think of that as too much considering she came and picked it up the day after my birth and brought back my pills the next day! Also, the last thing I want to be doing when my baby is a day old is dehydrating my placenta. More power to you if you do it yourself, but I'd rather pay and let someone else take care of it.

Bottom line, TOTALLY worth it and I also plan to do it from now on! I only wish more people knew about it so every woman could benefit from it!

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#20 of 35 Old 11-05-2010, 11:48 AM
 
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Originally Posted by paxye View Post
I did it... I was amazed at the results. I had so much energy after taking them... I still have some left and take them when I need a little pick-me-up...

I made my own and it was really easy... (even the day after I had given birth)

I documented the process here (warning pic of a placenta )
I quoted this because 1- its awesome to see pics of the process and 2- NOTE TO SELF, blend the placenta before you dehydrate!
We used our oven, and boiled it whole first, then sliced it like steak and then dehydrated it.
I followed PBI- but never thought to blend it then spread it out to dehydrate. It was tough to pulverize, because of so many big chuncks.

We're planning on doing it again with this next baby.

Thanks for the blog mama!
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#21 of 35 Old 11-05-2010, 12:27 PM
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Do you all think it's worth it to pay someone to do this, or would a friend who has done it before be good enough? I was hearing things about if they had training they know to drain blood (but it sounds like some here don't like that idea) and cut off certain parts, before doing it... I actually am friends with a woman who charges about $200 for it, but another friend has offered to do it for me free, as a gift to me (she has made use of hers before). I'm waffling but I'm leaning towards just getting my friend to do it for free, since isn't placenta just good placenta? I'm REALLY excited about using it this time.
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#22 of 35 Old 11-08-2010, 04:15 AM
 
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I have a friend who just got certified with PBi who will come and do it for me. Not sure yet how much it will cost, but I'm expecting it to be worth it. It was a wild mix of emotional issues after the last birth so I figured it would be a good step. Better than trying to figure out what herbs are safe or not with a newborn, anyway!

There are definitely different ways to do it and I'm not familiar enough with the options to know what I'd choose if I did have a choice. But, St. M, I'd think if your friend has done it before it would be reasonable to have her do it for you, too. You might see what options she has chosen and why just to know it's how you'd want it handled, though.

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#23 of 35 Old 11-09-2010, 09:18 AM
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I am having her do it. She's really well educated about this kind of stuff, whereas I have only read basic instructions so I trust her.

Now, to find a way to let the ILs know about the placenta-consuming. Just want to be sure it's when I can see the look on their faces... Every pregnant mama deserves a little entertainment, right?
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#24 of 35 Old 11-11-2010, 11:34 AM
 
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How did you all find people who will do this for you?  I am very interested but definitely think it's beyond what I will be able to manage myself.  I am located in NY (Long Island) but pretty close to NYC.

 

Thanks!

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#25 of 35 Old 11-11-2010, 06:14 PM
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I'd try on the FYT forum, perhaps? That area should have lots of resources.  I'd see if there are any networks like around here there's a birth professionals network.  But you could also just try calling up a couple midwives, because mine had a list of a few people she knew about.  There's also a certification for it, so maybe if you google you might find that and then local certified folks.  sorry I don't have links, just ideas.

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#26 of 35 Old 11-16-2010, 08:00 AM
 
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we did it!  it really seemed to help.  it wasn't gross or anything, it was just little capsules.  i didn't get too wonky emotionally, and i will be encapsulating again this time. 


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#27 of 35 Old 11-16-2010, 11:28 PM
 
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Even if you decide not to do it - freeze it at least!!!! I had lightly thought about it, especially since I had a history of depression, but thought it was rather weird and most likely not needed. BOY DO I REGRET THAT 2 MONTHS PP!!!! At least if you freeze it you'll have the option of using it in the future if you need to!! Good luck momma!!! I wish you a quick and easy labor! 

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#28 of 35 Old 11-17-2010, 01:16 PM
 
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I got dh to do it using these directions:http://www.cafemom.com/journals/read/1577334/Placenta_Encapsulation_Instructions_w_Pictures.  They're great and have pictures which is pretty helpful.

 

I also tried a chunk raw blended into a smoothie one day.

 

If I was having more kids, I would save a few days worth of chunks for smoothies and encapsulate the rest.  The smoothie definitely packed a punch (and I didn't taste it at all, it was totally not gross...and I'm largely vegetarian) and I had tons of energy and healing after it.  The pills seem to make a more subtle difference (for me).  It's hard for me to compare though--I feel like I've had more "blues" this time around even with the pills, but I think it's because I have MUCH less post partum help than I did last time.  So maybe it would be way worse without them!  I did notice for a while that I was weepier on days that I didn't remember to take the pills.


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#29 of 35 Old 11-21-2010, 05:17 AM
 
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I am having my placenta encapsulated! I am really excited about it too! I found a woman that was charging $350, and also would do a tincture and a painting with the placenta. This was lovely, but too much considering it cost about $4 to do it yourself--my husband is great but said there was no way he was doing it, and I wasnt interested in doing it myself either. Anways,  I found a midwifery student in the area, who was so excited when I asked her about it, and is doing it for FREE!! So, see if there is a doula/ midewife in training in your area who would like to do it for the pratice.

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#30 of 35 Old 11-23-2010, 10:14 AM
 
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If you had told me, even one day before the birth, that I would be eating the placenta, I would not have believed you!  During the pregnancy, hubbie and I somehow forgot to figure out what we wanted to do with the placenta.  So after the birth, when the midwife asked what we were going to do with it, we said, "uh, oops, we don't really know."  We froze it until deciding. 

 

I had bad PPD after baby #1, and when I foudn out that the placenta could help with that, I wanted to try it.  We don't have an income at the moment, so I didn't have the option of paying someone to do it, though that was my first preference.  It was a nightmare to prepare, since I didn't know what I was doing, even though I got directions online.  I steamed it 15 mins/side, then sliced and dried it in the oven.  (I struggled with cutting off the really tough membranes b/c my knives aren't sharp!)  Then put the slices in the food processor, and instead of fine powder, I just got big chunks.  I was so frustrated, because I couldn't get those chunks into gelatin capsules!  And there was no WAY I was going to eat it without some kind of covering.  (Mental block, I know, but that's life.)

But where there's a will there's a way.  I remembered how my grandma used to get me to take my vitamins-- by wrapping them in soft white bread-- and I decided to do the same thing.  It took a long time.  I took a chunk of placenta, wrapped a piece of soft bread around it, and put it in a bag, which went into the freezer to keep them fresh.  (I made about 60 this way, until I got really tired of the tedious process, and there's still some placenta chunks left in the freezer.)  Now I can swallow the "pills" without being grossed out.

 

All that said, I am deliriously happy with the results!  I did not get PPD this time!  In fact, I have so much energy, and such a positive mood, it's really amazing!  On days that I forget to take one of my "pills" I notice my mood gradually start to slump downward.  The difference is so noticeable, I am really amazed.  I would never have believed it until I experienced it!  But I'm not telling very many people I know what I'm doing, because the gross factor is so high.  I'm just happy to enjoy the results.  If there is another baby in my future, I hope to have the money to pay someone to do it next time, though, because the process was pretty tough for me.

 

Bottom line: I enthusiastically recommend consuming the placenta postpartum.  If I can do it, you can do it.  

joynsyde is offline  
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