So far, this has been a week for “shocking” celebrity mom stories. First, the story breaks that January Jones “ate her own placenta.” Then, Alicia Silverstone published a video of herself chewing up food and passing it to her son, mouth-to-mouth.
We’ve already posted a reaction and some of the Internet’s finest comments regarding Alicia’s video. Now I’d like to add my thoughts regarding January Jones and the placenta.
First of all, let’s not call it “eating” the placenta. It’s certainly great as a headline and for clicks…but it conjures up an image of cooking it with a little oil and cutting it up like a steak. Instead, it’s more like taking a vitamin.
After birth, the placenta is basically dehydrated, then ground up and put into gel capsules. A trained person can come to your home and do the entire process there, so that it never leaves your sight. (If you’re curious, it will cost about $150-300 total.) CafeMom has a fantastic photo series showing the entire process, if you are up for it.
Of course, if you birth at a hospital, it may be tough to be able to get a hold of your own placenta…many hospitals don’t release them. There is even a petition to get the NYU Medical Center to release healthy placentas to those who request them. Currently, “women who give birth at NYU Langone Medical Center and wish to keep their placentas have been forced to track down a licensed funeral director to rescue the fruit of their labor from the hospital morgue.” That’s a new one.
This is probably the most the web has talked about placentas in a while. The reactions we received from our readers on Facebook ranged from the shocked & grossed out…
“Is she that desperate for attention?”
“Just because we’re the only species to not do that doesn’t mean we should, how disgusting! there are lots of things that separate humans from other species and I don’t care to bridge the gap!”
…To the been there, done that…
“I did. It was dried and turned into a powder and put in veg gelcaps.”
…to the comparison to eating meat…
“I certainly don’t think it’s any more gross than the stuff most humans eat. Why is it gross just because it’s human? People eat random animal parts every day.”
Placenta pills are touted for decreasing postpartum depression, increasing & enriching breast milk, and overall just helping your body recover from the birth and new momhood.
From personal experience, this is not just a celebrity mom thing. In many natural mama circles, this is a common thing, especially with home births.
I was never really interested in trying it, but I did wind up taking placenta pills after the birth of my first son. I never really felt a difference either way, so when my second son was born at home, I wasn’t sold on creating the pills again. The midwives wrapped the placenta and put it in the freezer in case I changed my mind. We found that mildly amusing for some reason.
Other friends of mine are convinced their placenta pills practically saved their lives by keeping them from falling into the depths of major postpartum blues.
Just like anything that is not mainstream, this is something that may sound shocking at first, but later you decide totally makes sense.
I’ll leave you with a favorite video of mine. The placenta line at 14 seconds leaves me laughing every time…because that is exactly what I was talking about before my sons were born. Who knew I’d be a Crunchy Mama?
Has all of this placenta talk lately changed your mind one way or another? Comment below!
Photo Credit: Helga Esteb / Shutterstock.com