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Stacy Keibler is Reportedly Going to Eat Her Placenta…Should You?

Written on July 30, 2014 at 9:54 am , by

Yet another celebrity is taking a seat with January Jones and Tamera Mowry on the eat-your-own-placenta bandwagon: Stacy Keibler. And because she’s had one of the healthiest pregnancies out of all our fave celeb mamas, it’s difficult to question the former pro wrestler’s decision to have her placenta encapsulated, no matter how, um, disgusting it sounds.

We’ve already heard about this arguably gag-worthy trend that’s gaining more popularity (placenta recipes are a thing), but even though many new moms swear they’re healthier and happier—many claim it keeps postpartum depression at bay—and more energized because of it, there aren’t any studies that prove there is actually a benefit to eating your own placenta post-childbirth.

“There’s a lot of folklore surrounding the practice, but there is not a lot of hard medical or scientific data in favor of or against it,” says Jennifer Ashton, M.D., FITNESS advisory board member. ”There are a lot of misconceptions about what its value is nutritionally. The placenta is the conduit for supplying oxygen, blood and nutrients to the fetus. But I think what most people don’t realize is that it doesn’t do that all by itself. It does that because it extracts those nutrients from the mother.”

So why is this still trending? Some of it is cultural, but a lot of it is anecdotal, says Lauren Streicher, M.D. “Someone will say, ‘After my first pregnancy I had terrible postpartum depression and then the second time I ate placenta pills and I had none.’ But statistically we know that first pregnancies are far more likely to have postpartum depression than second pregnancies,” she says. “Was it the placenta pills or was it just your second pregnancy? Who knows? The only way to know is to test that in 10,000 people and see if there’s a real difference.”

But just because there isn’t yet research behind it doesn’t mean the benefits—and risks—don’t exist. ”It’s a trend just like anything else, and some of those trends turn out out be based to something good and some don’t,” says Ashton. “I think that people need to realize that there’s risk verses benefit to everything.”

We want to hear from you: Would you (or have you) eat your own placenta knowing that no research has yet been done on its risks or benefits? Or are you more of a “wait and see” kind of gal?

Photo by Diane Bondareff

More from FITNESS:

Your Post-Baby Body: A Timeline

Intimate Details: Your Sexual Health Guide

Fertility, Pregnancy, and Postnatal Care

  • Angela Fabrocini, LM, CPM

    I encapsulate placentas as part of my profession (I am a Licensed Midwife) and am amazed day after day, year after year, by the reports and feedback from my clients. We are the ONLY mammals that do not ingest our own placenta. And yes, we are not out in the wild and do not need to do so in order to ward off predators. However, all mammals instinctively know that on a biological and physiological level, the blood, nutrients, and stem cells in the placenta, will help heal and recover faster. At the time of delivery in a full-term human pregnancy, a woman has 3 times the amount of hormones in her body that a non-pregnant woman does. That’s the equivalent of taking 100 birth control pills everyday, for 10 months straight. As soon as the placenta detaches, the body is shifting hormone levels double-time, in order to re-establish the body to homeostasis. This can result in intense hormonal shifts during the postpartum period. If, like the patch for smokers, we could provide a way for women to slowly do a step-down process from the hormones, instead of the nose-dive off of the cliff, perhaps we would see happier and healthier postpartum moms and calmer babies. Not to mention that the capsules themselves contain stem cells from the placenta, which if stored correctly, can be used to help teething, sick, and colic-y babies and toddlers. Now there are a lot of people out there encapsulating placentas, and I urge and warn women to know EXACTLY who you are hiring to do this. Make sure they are certified, use the strictest precautions, and are cleaning and sterilizing. I also encourage women to do it themselves. The placenta is an amazing thing; a whole organ grown quickly and swiftly for one purpose only. To keep a growing baby growing. If you want more information or are curious/have questions, please don’t hesitate to contact me. http://www.abirthatatime.com

  • Thedrunkmime

    We also don’t eat our young like a lot of other mammals doesn’t but that doesn’t mean we should start :/

  • Grossed out

    Uh, I worked in an ICU when someone from L&D asked for our blender so some mom could eat her placenta. I just think that’s one of the craziest things ever. We are not animals, we are not driven to eat our young, and this is crazy! Not for me!

  • simone

    Generally mammals that eat their young is due to the young having health issues. Obviously we have better ways to handle health issues in infants. I encapsulated my placenta after my second pregnancy, definitely recommend it.

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