What if I told you there was a natural way to heal from birth?
- Decrease chance of getting PPD (postpartum depression)
- Increase and enrichment of breast milk
- Increase of energy
- Helps to increase hemoglobin after birth
- Decrease in postpartum bleeding
- Decrease in postpartum night sweats
- A natural way to give your body back everything that was lost during childbirth
Wait for it … It’s Called Placenta Encapsulation! Yup that’s right, this here mom of four and self-proclaimed unpaid Uber driver for the last 14 years will tell you that placenta encapsulation is simply a nice and neat way of returning to your body all that was lost during childbirth.
You want to do WHAT with my WHAT? Ah yes this is a typical response I get when telling someone about placenta encapsulation for the first time; I myself included! My initial response to the idea nearly a decade ago was “oh Heck NO”. There was NO way I was going to consume my own body part. If I did, I surely would not tell anyone I was doing it! Fast forward years later, here I am shouting to the world how seriously amazing placentas encapsulation is!
Motherhood is an amazing time full of excitement and anticipation. From the moment we find out that there is a tiny life growing inside of us, all we think about is them.
Will it be a boy or a girl?
What will they be like?
Will they look like me?
What will I name him or her?
Eventually we start to think about our baby’s birth… Do I want a hospital birth? A home birth? Will I be able to manage without the drugs? Can I really push something the size of a watermelon out of something the size of a… well, you know where I am going with this.
Something that I think so many women tend to neglect in all of this excitement is the person doing all of the work: themselves. Growing a baby is no easy task in itself, so when it comes to birthing one- well let’s just say thank God we have some sort of memory lapse that lets us even consider doing it again! But then, when you see those big brand new eyes for the first time, all the fears you may have had seem to melt away in an instant. It seems as though nothing could ever go wrong in your perfect little love bubble.
Flash forward to seven days later when you are suddenly in tears because you have misplaced the baby sock, insecure because you swear your husband just glared at you from across the room, and your body feels like you just got off the defensive line in the NFL playoffs.
When a woman gives birth, her body is thrown into a whirlwind of hormonal shifts. Her estrogen level which was once sky high, has now plummeted to the ocean floor. Blood loss accompanies the birth as well. We then have a tiny little bundle of joy that we must figure out how to feed, change, and at some point convince that sleeping in the night time really is a good thing. Put all these things together and you a have a new mom who is utterly exhausted. This may not be the story of every woman, but sit a bunch of new moms inside of Starbucks and I promise you, with latte in hand, they will all agree with me. The truth is that 80% percent of mothers will experience some form of postpartum depression (Aka PPD or baby blues).
I know that placenta encapsulation is still considered a “new” thing. The truth is that the Chinese have been using their placenta for over 5,000 years. Not to mention that every other mammal will consume their own placenta immediately following the birth of their young; sometimes leaving the newborns to fend for themselves until they are finished consuming it. Maybe we are just a little behind in the times.
So why not just cook up some placenta for family taco night? All joking aside, many women consume their placentas immediately after birth, a lot of the time in smoothie form. You find that this happens more often in a home birth environment. There are also recipes for placenta stew, lasagna, or pizza. Truthfully, it is preferable to have the placenta cooked because it is easier for your body to absorb the nutrients. However tasty this might seem, my guess is getting a dinner date may be a bit of a problem.
More importantly you can only eat the food over a course of a few days, so you are limiting the benefits. This is where encapsulation becomes the winner in my book. Your placenta is cleaned, steamed, dehydrated, ground down into a fine dust and then put into capsules. Most of the time you can get about a month’s supply out of one placenta. You take more the first two weeks and then work your way down as your body needs. You can even freeze some for menopause if you like.
In 2008, I became pregnant with my 4th child (and only boy), Matthew. With the planning of his birth came more learning about natural birth, water birth, and then placenta encapsulation. I had previously suffered through huge bouts of postpartum depression after the births of all three of my girls, so knowing that I was about to add a 4th to the mix had me more than a little worried. All I can say is MY PLACENTA SAVED ME!!!
Within a few days I was already feeling better than I had weeks after any of my prior births. To my amazement, the PPD never came. I was finally able to concentrate on bonding with my son while enjoying every moment with him and with my entire family- an experience I had longed for with each of my girls. I still feel to this day (7 years later) that this was the greatest gift a friend had ever given me.
It all sounds great right? But some would ask WHY? It’s biology really. As much as MAC makes us look flawless, and as moms we have the uncanny ability to multitask like a machine, the fact is that we are a MAMMAL! Lucky for us, civilization has come a long way from openly biting into a piece of raw meat. (However, if that’s your deal I won’t judge).
Author ~ Brittney Shinkle. Owner of Mommy’s Miracle San Diego ~ Mom, Wife, Placenta Encapsulation Specialist, unpaid Uber driver & owner of the minivan which screams to the world “I used to be cool “.