Placenta Encapsulation 101 with Jessica Poulsen of Full Circle Doula Collective
Updated: Dec 11, 2019
Placenta encapsulation is believed to have numerous benefits for postpartum women. Probably the best-
known benefit is the potential to reduce or even prevent postpartum depression, but other advantages many women have reported are increased energy, faster recovery, increased milk supply, and less
There are two main techniques for placenta encapsulation: the Traditional Method (Also known as
Traditional Chinese Medicine method), which incorporates the natural energy present in the placenta
organ as part of therapy, and the Raw Method which specifically focuses on the potential nutritional and
hormonal content of the placenta. I have been trained professionally in both techniques and currently offer
both types of placenta encapsulation.
The placenta is considered rich in iron and protein, which is useful to postpartum people recovering from
childbirth, and particularly beneficial to vegetarians. Pregnancy is taxing on the body, even if the pregnant
person follows the best of health regimens. The theory behind placentophagy is that you are returning the
nutrients lost during the birth process back to the body to aid in quick and smooth postpartum recovery.
Placenta ingestion can help you by:
*Reducing the risk of postpartum hemorrhage and
lessening lochia phase.
*Providing the hormones human placental lactogen and
prolactin to assist with your milk coming in &
*Replenishing iron lost from birth and preventing post-birth
anemia. Low iron can lead to depressive
*Balancing out hormone levels until the body is able to
regulate it's own.
*Providing natural pain relief from the labor and birthing
*Placenta helps your uterus return to its pre-pregnancy size
*Lending you a consistent flow of oxytocin (the bonding
and euphoric hormone)
*Replenishing your B vitamins and offering your body
protein for energy.
*Protection from infection due to retained placenta or
bacteria in the uterus.
*Decrease insomnia or sleep disorders.
The placenta’s hormonal make-up is completely unique to
the person it belongs to. No prescription, vitamin, or herbal supplement can do what one placenta pill can. How amazing is that?
The known ingredients that give the placenta its healing properties are:
Gonadotrophin: the precursor to estrogen, progesterone
Prolactin: promotes lactation.
Oxytocin: for pain and bonding; produced during
breastfeeding to facilitate bonding of parent and
Thyroid stimulating hormone: boosts energy and helps
recovery from stressful events.
Cortisone: combats stress and unlocks energy stores.
Interferon: stimulates the immune system to protect
Hemoglobin: replenishes iron deficiency and anemia, a
common postpartum condition.
Urokinase inhibiting factor and factor XIII: stops bleeding
and enhances wound healing.
Gammaglobulin: immune booster that helps protect
against postpartum infections.
RESEARCH STUDIES SUPPORTING PLACENTA ENCAPSULATION
Placentophagy protocol in management of postpartum care ”Giving...placenta to a new mother following birth has become standard protocol among a growing number of midwives in the United States. By nourishing the blood and fluids, endocrine glands and organs, Placenta will ...reduce or stop postpartum bleeding, speed up recovery, boost energy and relieve postpartum blues.”
The Effect of Ingestion of Desiccated (dried) Placenta on Milk Production
“All patients were given desiccated placenta prepared as previously described (C.A. II, 2492) in doses of 10 grains in a capsule 3 times a day. Only those mothers were chosen for the study whose parturition was normal and only the weights of those infants were recorded whose sole
source of nourishment was mother’s milk. The growth of 177 infants was studied. The rate of growth is increased by the ingestion of placenta by the mother... the maternal ingestion of dried placenta tissue so stimulates the tissues of the infants feeding on the milk produced during this time, that unit weight is able to add on greater increments of matter, from day to day, than can unit weight of infants feeding on milk from mothers not ingesting this substance.”
(Hammett, Frederick. S. 1918. The Journal of Biological Chemistry, 36. American Society of Biological Chemists, Rockefeller Institute for Medical Research, original
press: Harvard University.)
The American Journal of Obstetrics and Diseases of Women and Children:
”It has been shown that the feeding of desiccated placenta to women during the first eleven
days after parturition causes an increase in the protein and lactose percent of the milk... All
the mothers were receiving the same diet, and to the second set 0.6mg of desiccated placenta
was fed three times a day throughout the period. Certain definite differences in the progress of
growth of the two sets of infants are to be observed. It is evident that the recovery from the
postnatal decline in weight is hastened by the consumption of milk produced under the
influence of maternally ingested placenta.”
(McNeile, Lyle G. 1918. The American Journal of
Obstetrics and Diseases of Women and Children, 77. W.A. Townsend & Adams, original press: University of Michigan.)
Placenta as Lactagagon
“Powdered Placenta Hominis was used for 57 cases of insufficient lactation. Within 4 days, 48 women had markedly increased milk production, with the remainder
following suit over the next three days.”
(Bensky/Gamble. 1997. Materia Medica, Eastland
“An attempt was made to increase milk secretion in mothers by administration of dried
placenta per os. Of 210 controlled cases only 29 (13.8%) gave negative results; 181 women
(86.2%) reacted positively to the treatment, 117 (55.7%) with good and 64 (30.5%) with very
good results. It could be shown by similar experiments with a beef preparation that the
effective substance in placenta is not protein. Nor does the lyofilised placenta act as a
biogenic stimulator so that the good results of placenta administration cannot be explained as
a form of tissue therapy per os. The question of a hormonal influence remains open. So far it
could be shown that progesterone is probably not active in increasing lactation after
administration of dried placenta.
This method of treating hypogalactia seems worth noting since the placenta preparation is
easily obtained, has not so far been utilized and in our experience is successful in the majority
of women.” (Soykova-Pachnerova E, et. al.(1954). Gynaecologia 138(6):617-627.)