why you should consume your placenta

The top reasons why and how you should eat your placenta

Those of you who know me are asking how whether you should eat your placenta or not hasn’t been covered already.

Those of you who don’t know me:

why you should consume your placenta

 

Placentas are cool. Like, seriously freakin’ cool. This neato organ develops and grows with a baby in utero. It acts as a nutrient deliverer, toxin remover, immune building lifeline for the developing fetus. Plus, it’s edible.

It’s literally all that and a bag of placenta chips (if you choose to go down that route, of course).

Okay, I’ve now made two inferences to consuming this amazing body part. You’re probably wondering WTF?!

Fair enough, but let me explain.

Health benefits if you choose to eat your placenta:

15 ways your body changes after birth (that nobody else will tell you)

 

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increased breastmilk supply

-decreased potential of postpartum depression

-assists in healing from birth

-increase in energy

-iron supply

This is a highly debated subject amongst Western and Chinese cultures. Traditional Chinese medicine has been practicing placenta consumption for hundreds of years and believes it has many benefits. Most Western medicine practitioners, however, tend to be more skeptical and don’t promote it often. Most of the information surrounding the efficacy of if you should eat your placenta is anecdotal in Western society.

I suggest you do your research, but keep an open mind. There isn’t hard, scientific fact surrounding the benefits if you eat your placenta so you have to make your own conclusion on the matter. My opinion is that it worked for me, and I would suggest it for most women who have just given birth!

Personally, I’ve done it after three births. I experienced most of the noted benefits, although I did experience post-partum depression with my third and fourth babies (keep in mind that I’ve also struggled with anxiety and depression for many years-so post-partum depression was probably inevitable to some degree).

My experiences were amazing and I have no regrets except one: Finding out about the possibility of placenta truffles after I decided our fourth would be our last baby!

Ways to consume your placenta:

-smoothie

-chocolates

-encapsulation

-tincture

-added to a meal (maybe don’t disclose to anyone who’s eating at your house that you’ve done this before)

 

I opted for encapsulation each time. The placenta gets sliced, dehydrated, and ground up. Then, the powder gets put into capsules. You can definitely do this yourself, but I arranged with a doula while I was pregnant to have her do all the hard work. I figured I’d done enough hard work and didn’t need to add any more pressure on myself. Before my placenta was taken to my lovely doula I snagged a small piece of raw placenta to add to a smoothie while I waited for my capsules. I added enough delicious berries and yogurt to not taste a single bit of that placenta.

**Note: Nobody wants a sip of your placenta smoothie. Don’t offer.

When she brought back my 2 month supply of pills I was thrilled! I took them faithfully every day and was happy with the results.

 

Have you experienced placenta consumption? Tell me how you did it!

 

when will breastmilk come in

When does breastmilk come in?

Wait, what? What do I mean “when does breastmilk come in?”

Breastmilk production is actually a bit of a process. Your body produces a variety of milk dependent on the stage that your baby is at. While this is something that your body will naturally do it does take some time and work.

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    Colostrum

    The first milk that your body will create is called “Colostrum”. This milk is low in fat and carbohydrates (which are hard for your baby to digest in those first days), and high in protein. It’s easy to digest and contains what your baby needs to create temporary protection until his immune system begins to develop on its own. It also acts as a laxative to help your baby pass meconium.

    Colostrum is thicker than the breastmilk you’ll start producing in a couple of weeks and can be yellow, orange, or even pink!

    Here’s the super cool thing about colostrum: your body starts to produce it during your pregnancy. You can actually start collecting and freezing colostrum before your baby comes so that they get an extra boost of this invaluable milk.

    Grab some syringes from your local pharmacy and hand express colostrum into the syringe. You won’t collect much (a couple of ml at a time). Make sure to date it and freeze it in a freezer bag. You can give this to your baby in the first days unthawed directly through the syringe.

    When it comes to how to breastfeed one of the first steps is knowing when your milk comes in! Find out everything you need to know here

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    So, when will my breastmilk come in?

    Your colostrum will start to change to breastmilk at around 2-6 days after birth.

    It takes a couple of weeks for your breastmilk to fully come in.

    During this first two weeks you might find that your breasts feel FULL! Some mothers experience only a bit of this fullness while others feel as if they’re going to burst. This is due to blood flow increasing to the breasts as well as swelling of tissue.

    It’s important during this time to make sure that you’re feeding your baby frequently. Not only will this relieve the congestion and reduce that feeling of engorgement, but it will also stimulate your milk production.

    Some other ways to relieve the pressure are:

    -Apply warm compresses to the breasts

    -Express some milk between feedings

    -Use an ice pack to reduce swelling

    -Gently massage the engorged area

    -Apply cabbage leaves

    -Wear a properly supporting bra or tank

    There are times when a mother will become so engorged that she finds it difficult to latch her baby on. In this case try hand expressing or pumping a bit of milk to soften the breast tissue and allow baby to draw out the milk to empty the breast.

    Will I be engorged for as long as I’m breastfeeding?

    As your body begins to stabilize and figure out how much your baby needs (yep-your body can do that. Amazing, eh?) you’ll find that your breasts become softer.

    This is confusing to some women because it feels like you can no longer feel the milk in the breasts, and many women start to wonder if they are no longer producing enough milk.

    If your baby is having 6-8 wet diapers and 2-5 poops a day you can be assured that you do have enough milk. If this is not the case you may need to try some different strategies to increase your milk supply.

    How do I get my breastmilk to come in?

    Frequent nursing is key to bringing your breastmilk in. It’s advised to breastfeed your baby at least every two hours, but it’s best to keep one eye on the clock and one eye on your baby. If your baby is showing signs of hunger before two hours feed her whenever there’s a slight indication she may want to feed. If she’s gone for two hours without feeding wake her up (tickle her feet, blow on her neck, take off her clothes) to give her some milk.

    Skin to skin contact is also an important step in establishing your breastmilk supply. GET NAKED! Seriously, as often as possible strip that baby down to a diaper and get yourself topless to cuddle and nurse your baby.

    This is why it’s so important to ask potential visitors to always check in with you before visiting-you need to be 100% at ease and comfortable in your surroundings. Feeling like you can focus comfortably on your baby without having to worry about the distraction of visitors or other duties/obligations for a few weeks will be a major aid in helping your breastmilk come in.

    In short, the answer to “when will my breastmilk come in?” is approximately two weeks for your mature milk to come in. In those two weeks, you get to watch the miraculous transition from colostrum to breastmilk while potentially enjoying a very, very full cup size!