whether you are having a home birth or hospital birth, you can have your placenta encapsulated.
how do i get my placenta from the hospital?
You will need to inform your OB or your midwife team that you are interesting in keeping your placenta. Its also a good idea to put this in your birth plan. Ask your birth partner or doula to help advocate for you if you feel that you won’t be able. Since a law protecting a woman’s right to her placenta passed January 2014, all hospitals in Oregon must allow families to take their placentas home immediately after the birth (unless there is a health risk involved such as a uterine infection during labor). You may want to have someone in your support circle on hand so that they can deliver it home to your fridge. I can come to get started at that time, and often, I can have the pills ready for you even before you return from the hospital.
I recommend that you bring a cooler with you to the hospital, as the majority of the hospitals in the area will *not* refrigerate it for you. They will package the placenta up for you and provide ice so that it can be kept cold in your personal cooler. It is highly crucial that your placenta not be sent to pathology. In the event this happens, it would no longer be safe for consumption, but you could still bring it home to bury.
Where will you prepare my placenta pills?
I am available to prepare your placenta in either your home or my work space. I strive to make this process as convenient as possible for families to ensure there is no added stress in adding placenta encapsulation to their post-birth plans.
how long does this process take?
The encapsulation process takes two days. The first day prepares it to go into the dehydrator, where it stays for about 16-24 hours (depending on if you do the Energizing or the TCM method). The second day of the process involves preparing your dried placenta to go into capsules. I am available to encapsulate the placenta in the client’s home and provide all of the necessary tools and materials. All I need from you is access to your sink and stove, which I will be happy to clear, clean or arrange as necessary. For clients who prefer me not prepare in their home, I am happy and available prepare your placenta pills in my space. Whichever you prefer is absolutely fine with me. In either case, I adhere to strict sanitation and disinfection guidelines. Please email me back and let me know your preference.
tell me more about safety and cross-contamination?
I have done extensive training on food safety and preparation of placenta in both the Traditional and Energizing styles through the organization Placenta Benefits and my own personal research. I understand the science behind placentophagy and the ways to prepare the placenta for consumption. I have a valid Oregon State Food Handler’s Card from the Department of Health. As such, I have been properly trained in food safety and contamination prevention. I have completed training in blood borne pathogens and infection control that is specifically for Placenta Encapsulation. This training adheres to OSHA Standard 29 CFR 1910.1030. Given my background in commercial beverage manufacturing, I know how to properly disinfect my equipment and workspace to prevent cross-contamination and to adhere to state-mandated regulations on disinfection with food production equipment. I adhere to strict standards of sanitation and safety.
i am having a home birth, what do we need to do to prepare?
For home birth clients, you will need to let your midwife know you intend to keep it and have either freezer bags or tupperware available for them to store the placenta in after the birth. They can place the placenta in the fridge until my arrival.
how many pills will my placenta make?
The average amount of pills one placenta can make is between 80-150 pills, depending on the size of the placenta. This amount will provide plenty for the first weeks of your postpartum healing, plus some to save, if you choose, for when your menses return or other life transitions.
does the process produce a smell?
In the Traditional Chinese Medicine method, the placenta is steamed before dehydration. The steaming process does produce an odor, however, the placenta is being steamed with herbs that overpower that smell. Additionally, I always turn on the stovetop fan to help the steam dissipate. None of my clients have ever complained of a smell or lingering odor. The smell that it produces is similar to steak or liver. Please let me know prior to encapsulation if this is a concern for you and we can discuss the ways to make you the most comfortable.
i am a vegetarian/vegan; can i still ingest my placenta?
I have had many vegetarian/vegan clients who have ingested their placentas and felt that it didn’t conflict with their dietary lifestyle. If you have concerns about this, feel free to be in touch.
what is the difference between the “Energizing” and the “traditional chinese medicine” styles of encapsulation?
The main difference is that in the Energizing style the placenta is not steamed prior to dehydration. Many mothers who choose this method report that they feel it gives them lots of energy. I feel that this method is great for clients who already have more then one child at home, who know they will be returning to work soon or who know that they tend to feel more depressed when they have less energy. Additionally, clients who already enjoy raw foods or who are interested in live enzymes as part of their diet also tend to prefer this method. If you have a sensitivity to caffeine or have a history of moderate to severe anxiety, this preparation is not suited for you as it may increase anxiety and I would encourage the Traditional style instead.
In the Traditional Chinese Medicine style the placenta is steamed with ginger and lemon before it is dehydrated. Clients report back that this method is helpful with their emotional stability, promoting a more positive overall mind set and is great for clients who anticipate a harder transition postpartum.
If there is meconium present at childbirth or if the placenta is not prepared with the first two days postpartum, I cannot offer the “Raw” style and will default to making a Traditional preparation instead.
More questions? Please contact me or fill out this form and I will be in touch with you soon. Thank you for your interest.