Having a child is one of life's most amazing milestones but a growing trend has some moms saving more than others.
10 News Reporter Liz Crawford took a deeper look at the latest craze of mothers consuming placenta after their babies are born.
Like many moms, Blair Hodges was excited to welcome her second child but this time around, she wanted to be more prepared.
“With my first, I got postpartum really bad so I wanted something that would help with the anxiety and just the depression part of it,” Hodges told 10News WTSP.
So she turned to a pill unlike anything else in the world- her very own placenta in pill form.
“I had a lot of people ask if I was crazy.”
Hodges heard about Kim Wadsworth and her business, Fruit of Your Womb from a friend. Wadsworth has been encapsulating placentas for four years.
Hodges said she had a much better experience post-partum when taking the placenta pills. “I really didn't get depressed, I had more energy, I slept better and I didn't have anxiety.”
Kim Wadsworth told 10News her business has really picked up in the last few years. She usually takes on about fifteen clients a month.
“It stabilizes your hormones, it's supposed to help combat baby blues, post-partum depression. It also helps boost your milk supply,” said Wadsworth.
Wadsworth, who completes the process in her family kitchen, breaks the raw placenta in pieces, then places them in the dehydrator for about 20 hours before grinding the pieces into a powder in her blender.
CLICK HERE: Step-By-Step Placenta Encapsulation
Wadsworth told 10News the average size placenta makes about 120-140 capsules.
While the trend might be growing, it’s not popular among everyone. 10News spoke to Madelyn Butler, MD of the Woman’s Group in Tampa. She’s been asked about placenta pills by her patients.
Dr. Butler said, “There's absolutely no scientific evidence that this is going to help you in anyway. Think of all the bacteria that live in a home kitchen. Is this blender being sterilized in the same way we would sterilize something in the medical field?”
No scientific evidence, but what about all that anecdotal evidence?
“I think the power of the mind, if you believe that something is going to work, it's like the placebo effect, it's going to work,” explained Dr. Butler.
But for Wadsworth’s clients like Blair Hodges, placenta pills work.
“I swear by them. I did have concerns. Most people are doing it out of their homes, but I haven't had any side effects like that and it's all been positive so I would do it again.”
Fruit of Your Womb sent 10News this information about their sanitization techniques:
First off, we take this issue of sanitation very seriously. We use hospital grade cleaning solutions throughout the process, sanitation absorption pads, and MERV 14 hospital grade air filters, which are installed in our home. When using our chemicals we follow OSHA policies and procedures. Where we perform the process we thoroughly clean the area and surrounding areas before, during, and after the process. We do not process more than one placenta at a time. We have a labeling system that tracks the process until it's complete. We have decided not to use a industrial kitchen for this process, like some encapsulators do, because we believe it would be harder to maintain a sanitary workplace in a public area. During the dehydration process temperatures exceed 100° which kills off many of the bacteria or contaminants that may be present.
The FDA sent 10News this statement:
The FDA regulates products in interstate commerce. Therefore, a mother eating her own placenta does not fall within FDA's jurisdiction.
The FDA does not consider human placenta to be a food or a dietary ingredient for use in dietary supplements under the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act. Given that human placenta may transmit disease, the FDA would consider a dietary supplement or other food product that contains it to be adulterated. The FDA strongly recommends that consumers avoid dietary supplements and other food products containing human placenta, as the risk of bacterial infection is significant.