Placenta medicine is used to aid in healing the body and mind after childbirth. Candace will pick up your placenta from your birthing location, process it, and return it to you at your home. Cost: $300. Discount available for Birth and Post Partum Doula Clients of any of Luna's Doulas. Additional discount availble for Birth Doula Clients of Candace's since she is already on call and at the birth.
Why Placenta Services? The placenta! The tree of life, the great facilitator of the growing of a child inside of a mother’s waters. Many cultures though breadth and depth of time have placed importance on acknowledging and honoring the placenta as a facilitator of life, genetic twin to the child, and grounding rod to self, home, family, and earth, and have important customs for its proper handling. Many have also been aware of its potency as a supplement/food for the mother in the time of the fourth trimester. The placenta contains nutrients and hormones that are supportive and replenishing when recovering from childbirth and transitioning into lactation. It was created by the mother’s body and returns the nutrients when consumed. Although there is not a plethora of scientific research on placenta consumption, as is true of many earth-based practices and natural remedies, the anecdotal evidence is robust. While benefits are not guaranteed, and every body is different, many people report positive outcomes. The most commonly reported outcomes and benefits include:
Increased/adequate Milk Supply
Balanced hormones (the placenta contains small amounts of natural bioavailable hormones such as estrogen, progesterone, and oxytocin)
Boost in Iron and B Vitamins (which is has been shown to contain)
Decreased postpartum bleeding
Benefits mood, with decrease in “baby blues” and postpartum depression
Decrease likeliness of postpartum insomnia
Quicker overall recovery and general energy levels
In a Survey of 189 woman who consumed their placenta(Selander): “When asked to rate how positive the placentophagy experience was on a Likert scale, the majority of women reported that placentophagy was a very positive experience (75%) or positive experience (20%). Four percent of participants described it as slightly positive and 1% of participants selected not positive. When asked to rate how negative the placentophagy experience was on a similar Likert scale, 92% reported that this experience was not negative, 7% chose slightly negative, less than 1% said negative, and less than 1% said very negative. Nearly all participants (98%) indicated that they would participate in placentophagy again.”
In a survey of 400 (Bay Area Placenta Services): 53% Enhanced Milk Supply = 34% Increase/19%^ Oversupply/Only 1.2% Reported Lower Supply, the rest answered about the same/unknown 59% Faster Healing= 45% said they feel they healed faster 13% said they don't think they did, the rest said they healed in expected time frame 93.3% Balanced Hormones= About 81% Noticed feeling more balanced and only 5% felt out of balance, the rest felt expectedly balanced or unknown 73.4% More Energy=68.2% Noticed an increase in energy/ 27% said it stayed about the same About 76% of people said they would likely encapsulate again
One study looked at mineral presence both nutritive and potentially toxic metals. It found placenta pills to contain 24% of daily iron needs and 7% of daily Selenium needs. It also found "The mean concentrations of potentially harmful elements (arsenic, cadmium, lead, mercury, uranium) were well below (European Union) established toxicity thresholds. (Young)
In another study, researchers analyzed 28 steamed & dehydrated placenta samples for the presence and concentration of 17 hormones (Young). Fifteen of the 17 hormones analyzed were detected in all 28 placenta samples. The summary was as follows: ‘While concentrations of many of the selected hormones are relatively low, mean concentrations of estradiol, progesterone, and allopregnanolone could potentially reach physiological effect thresholds.’
Since hormonal drops are related factors in most postnatal challenges such as lactation, mood, recovery, and overall sense of well being, the hormonal availability in placenta capsules is what many may find so therapeutic.
PLACENTA ENCAPSULATION OPTIONS I offer two basic methods for placenta encapsulation preparation.
Steamed, or the Chinese Medicine-Inspired Method
Raw Dehydrated Method I also offer a complimentary Placenta Print, Cord keepsake, and Digital Photos of the placenta with all preparations
Steamed/Chinese Medicine-Inspired Method In Traditional Chinese medicine, the postpartum state is viewed as being susceptible to cold and deficiency, where it is important for the mother to consume warming, nourishing, building, and tonifying foods and herbs. TCM views raw foods to be cooling, which should be avoided in the first 40 days postpartum. Thus, the placenta is first washed, then gently steamed to transform it into a remedy that will have an overall warming effect on the body. Further, lemon slices, ginger, and jalapeno are put into the steam water to strengthen the placenta remedy’s ability to bring warming, circulatory effects when being taken internally. If for some reason the lemon, ginger, and jalapeno being included in the steam water feels incorrect for you, they can be left out as well. The herbs themselves are not included in the capsules. After being steamed, the placenta is sliced, dehydrated, powdered and encapsulated. The placenta must be steamed if you are GBS+ or there is meconium present. The steam method is recommended if your labor involved medications, as it can help release the residual compounds. This method’s strength is seen as more deeply restorative and nourishing to the postpartum state.
Raw Dehydrated Method The Raw method skips the steaming. The placenta is washed and sliced, then directly dehydrated. When the placenta is not steamed, there is not enough heat in the dehydration process alone to kill any possible pathogens. I can dehydrate the placenta at a raw temperature, meaning I set my dehydrator to 115, or I can dehydrate at a higher temperature of 160, to bring more heat and more protection against the possibility of pathogens present in any raw meat. The raw method is contraindicated for individuals who are GBS+ or where meconium was present. This method is not recommended by the CDC since it is raw. If your labor involved medications, the steamed method is preferred as it can help release residual compounds. This method’s strength is seen to retain more of the hormonal activity and enzymes, and to be very energizing. There is a slightly larger yield of capsules in the raw method.
I offer Placenta Prints, Cord Keepsakes, and a few Digital Photographs of the placenta complementary with encapsulation services. Placenta prints are created before the placenta is washed or prepared. I use art paper and make a print of the placenta with its natural blood. I take some nice pictures of the placenta after I wash it. The umbilical cord, which is not used in encapsulation, I dehydrate in a heart shape. Some families may choose to keep the cord as a special object, and others may choose to return it to the earth or bury it ceremonially. Many cultures have traditions to bury or plant the umbilical cord or placenta. If you wish to encapsulate your placenta and also bury some of it or plant a tree with it, I will return to you both the dehydrated cord and the small chunk of the placenta where the placenta and umbilicus join for you to plant in the earth.
Why NOT to have encapsulation? These instances are rare, but the most common is if the mother has a confirmed infection such as Chorioamionitis, Prevotella Melaninogenica, or Sepsis/Blood Poisoning, or if Anaphylaxis was experienced during labor. A fever in labor can be a sign of an infection, but a low grade fever/elevated temperature is also a common side effect of an epidural too. If treatment is occuring for for infection, (excluding GBS) consuming the placenta is contraindicated. Meconium and GBS are not contraindicated and the placenta can be handled and prepared in a way to make it safe of bacteria. The raw method is not viable in these cases and it must be steamed. I do not process placentas in known cases of HIV, Hepatitis B or Hepatits C and ask all my clients to verify this.
No matter what, the placenta belongs to you and you can still take it home and plant or bury it no matter the circumstances.
Procedure: - You will need to tell your birthing place that you are keeping the placenta. Bring a small cooler with you to the birth if you are not staying home. Some hospitals will put the placenta in a container, and others will not. Best to bring 2 large (1 gal or larger) ziplock bags in case necessary. Please double bag the placenta. Some hospitals will be able to keep it in a refrigerator and others will not. All have ice available. If they can not refrigerate it within 3 hours of birth, please place it in a cooler with ice until I arrive to pick it up. -Please have someone on your birth team notify me when labor is beginning so I can be prepared to arrange my schedule to pick up and process the placenta. -Have someone on the birth team notify me soon after delivery. -Keep placenta on Ice or in Fridge and I will pick it up within 24 hours. -My first step is to sterilize my space and equipment with a bleach solution. I have dedicated equipment for the process -I follow the processes written above for Raw or Steamed, using sterelized equipment along the way and cleaning up after my work with sterelization. I finish by sterelizing my equipment before I pack it away. - I arrange with you or someone in your household to deliver the prepared placenta within 4 days of recieving it, usually sooner.
About Candace: I have a background as a Clinical herbalist and a lot of experience preparing and recommending various natural remedies. I was trained in placenta prepration in my Doula training with The Matrona. I have taken a certification in Good Manufacturing Practices for Natural Products. I follow safe food handling procedures and blood-born pathogen safe procedures. I also offer Birth Doula services as well as health consultations and guidance for any specific situiations you are seeking to adress with herbs, natural remedies, and lifestyle changes.
Works Cited: Sharon M. Young , Laura K. Gryder, David Zava, David W. Kimball, Daniel C. Benyshek, 2016 ‘Presence and concentration of 17 hormones in human placenta processed for encapsulation and consumption’, Placenta 43, P86-88
Young, S.M., et al. "Human placenta processed for encapsulation contains modest concentrations of 14 trace minerals and elements." Nutrition Research. 2016 Aug;36(8):872-8.
Jodi Selander , Allison Cantor , Sharon M. Young & Daniel C. Benyshek (2013): Human Maternal Placentophagy: A Survey of Self-Reported Motivations and Experiences Associated with Placenta Consumption, Ecology of Food and Nutrition, 52:2, 93-115
Bay Area Placenta Services, survey of 400 https://www.bayareaplacentaservices.com/blog/why-placenta-encapsulation