As a Certified Placenta Encapsulation Specialist, I wanted to address an article that has been floating around the birthing communities and mom groups online, posted by the CDC:
This rebuttal article posted by Association of Placenta Preparation Arts addresses many of the concerns and questions regarding this issue. I like to share this one because APPA really knows what they are talking about when it comes to placenta encapsulation. http://placentaassociation.com/group-b-strep-placenta-encapsulation-safety/
The CDC recommends to not ingest your placenta, however if your provider is certified, has completed their BBP training (this is a must, and I have and am willing to show any client my up to date certifications) Then you should be in good hands, as your provider will be up to date in the best safety and sanitation standards and handling of the placenta. Consultation is so important, and as a client it is very imperative that you answer truthfully to questions that may be uncomfortable. Such as asking to see results from a recent blood test, asking if you have any known infections, STD’s or illnesses, what medications are you taking or have you recently taken…etc The provider in this circumstance should have asked the mother if any infection was present at birth and then advised against encapsulation. And if it was insisted that encapsulation be done, the placenta should have been steamed to kill any possible bacteria.
APPA made a comment on their page "If the placenta had been prepared properly GBS would have never been cultured from the capsules. Secondly, if her milk tested negative there was some other route of infection. Did they culture her saliva? her hands or skin? Did they test other family members? It seems they skipped many vital steps to discovering the true nature of the infant's illness(differential diagnosis), in order to point a misguided finger at another alternative to western medicine." There are many unanswered factors that could have infected that child, and it seems very unlikely that it would be because of placenta capsules, unless the mother was giving the baby capsules, which is not recommended by any certified provider. Possibly infection from skin to skin transmission or hand to rectal transmission during diaper changes…
I don't want you to be swayed in one direction because of the CDC article. The CDC article is based off one circumstance and is not to be taken as a "study". There is little research done on ingesting placenta and it should always be known there is possible risk when making that decision. However as this practice, though centuries old, is gaining popularity in Western Cultures, more studies are taking place. I can assure you that I have taken my BBP certification, Food Handlers certification and Placenta Encapsulation certification through International Placenta and Postpartum Association and I NEVER handle more than one placenta at a time, in one day. I hold myself to a high standard of sanitation and will not risk my family or my clients by preparing a placenta by taking shortcuts. Every client serviced by Racine Placenta Encapsulation will receive the same level of care and concern, which is my 100%.
As always, feel free to send me a message if you have additional comments or concerns about this subject!
- Naomi Nowak