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Placenta Encapsulation

Placentophagy, or consumption of the placenta, has been reported for decades to help stop the baby blues and diminish postpartum fatigue.  Some women have cooked the placenta in a stew, mixed it into a smoothie, or even taken it raw to tap into its powerful effects.  For many who feel squeamish about this or want to reap the benefits of placenta for more than just a day or two, there is another option: encapsulation.  Powdered placenta has been used in Traditional Chinese Medicine for centuries.  In the postpartum period, placenta capsules can be used to:

  • balance your hormones
  • enhance your milk supply
  • increase your energy

Placenta encapsulation involves cleaning, steaming, drying, grinding and encapsulating the placenta in capsules.  This provides all the benefits without unusual tastes or smells and preserves the placenta’s medicinal properties, ensuring many weeks of hormonal support.  Some women save their placenta capsules for later in life, to ease the transition to menopause.

How is the encapsulation process completed?

There are two methods for preparing your placenta as well as the choice of location. You may have your placenta encapsulated in your home or in our dedicated workspace. The placenta is prepared using identical protocols. There is no variation in preparation based on the location.

Gentle

Traditional Chinese Method

The placenta is gently steamed with lemon and ginger, sliced thin and dehydrated. It is then ground into a powder and put into capsules. This method is good for placentas that have had slight meconium staining or moms who are worried about bringing balance to their postpartum cycles.

High Yield

Raw Foods Method

Some mothers decide to forego the steaming process and have their placenta encapsulated raw. Hormones and nutrient load are lessened when food is cooked so in this preparation the placenta is gently cleaned, sliced, and dehydrated slowly on low heat, then ground, and put into capsules.

Other Options

Tincture

I will put a sliver of your fresh placenta to soak in 100-150 proof alcohol for 24 hours or up to six weeks, then I will strain it for you into convenient sized bottles for storage.

Placenta Prints

Using edible food coloring gels along with your natural fluids I can capture the "Tree of Life" so you can preserve the likeness of the organ that kept your baby alive.

Smoothie Cubes

All or part of your placenta prepared and frozen into cubes in order to be consumed in fruit smoothies.

Encapsulation

$350 $250 for birth doula clients

  • Includes: Pickup and Delivery Choice of preparation: Gentle (TCM) or Raw Choice of location

Tincture

$25

  • A sliver of your fresh placenta soaked in 100-150 proof alcohol for 24 hours or up to six weeks and strained into dropper bottles.

Prints

$25

  • Using edible food coloring gels along with your natural fluids up to three prints of your placenta can be made before preparation

Smoothie Cubes

$25

  • All or part of your placenta prepared and frozen in cubes in order to be consumed in fruit smoothies.

Jenn has completed and is certified with an OSHA Compliant BloodBorne Pathogens training course for placenta encapsulators and certified in food safety.

Placenta Encapsulation FAQs

I am Jenn Carlson and for the last 10 years I have been an IT professional and a stage manager until starting my own "show" with my two daughters. I was a high risk mom for both. Their births ignited my passion to help women in labor and promote breastfeeding.  I am a CBI and DONA Trained, Madriella Certified Birth Doula as well as a CPR Instructor.

Placentophagy, or consumption of the placenta, has been reported for decades to help stop the baby blues and diminish postpartum fatigue.  Some women have cooked the placenta in a stew, mixed it into a smoothie, or even taken it raw to tap into its powerful effects.  For many who feel squeamish about this or want to reap the benefits of placenta for more than just a day or two, there is another option: encapsulation.  Powdered placenta has been used in Traditional Chinese Medicine for centuries.  In the postpartum period, placenta capsules can be used to:

  • balance your hormones
  • enhance your milk supply
  • increase your energy

The CDC released a case study on a newborn who had a recurrent GBS infection after the mother had her placenta encapsulated. It has left a lot of people asking if placenta capsules can make your baby sick.

The short answer is: probably not. A well-trained placenta arts specialist will make sure that your placenta is prepared safely for consumption, unfortunately, it seems that this specialist may not have done so. The placenta and the birth should have been assessed to see if it was fit for consumption and then the placenta should have been properly prepared. A maternal or infant infection at or immediately after delivery indicates that an active infection was present. The mother should have been counseled against encapsulation initially. The second major issue, in this case, is that proper food safety protocols may not have been followed. This likely led to the capsules containing GBS bacteria and potentially causing reinfection.

We know that proper steaming and dehydration temperatures will drastically reduce microbial counts thanks to research from Jena University, so even in the case of GBS colonization (not infection), we can confidently say that properly prepared placenta capsules will be safe for consumption.

The mode of the recurrence, in this case, is speculated to be due to the placenta capsules, however, it is impossible to know if that is the case. GBS infections do have a low incidence of recurrence in infants (0.4% to 0.9%). This recurrence has been speculated to be due to exposure to colonized family members or colonized mucous membranes. It is important to note that the mother's milk tested negative for GBS bacteria so the direct route of retransmission (from capsule to mother to milk to baby) was not the mode of recurrence.

In short, this is a case to take seriously, but it is a single case.