8 truly weird things people have done with their placenta
The placenta is the thing that nourishes your baby while it's still in the womb, making it one of the human body's most incredible (temporary) organs. It's packed with nutrients, and many mothers feel it's a waste to simply dispose of the placenta after they've given birth.
Ultimately it's up to the individual to choose whether to leave it at the hospital, donate it for medical purposes or to take it home. And if it's the latter that you're interested in, it seems that people are getting creative with what to do with their after-birth.
Many people will testify to the benefits of eating it, which normally just means dehydrating the placenta and putting it into pill form. It's said to have a lot of regenerative benefits and allegedly helps with the post-partum healing process.
But while taking it in pill form seems the best way to consume your placenta without getting squeamish and really having to think about what it is you're swallowing, others are getting far more creative with it... Without passing too much judgment about people's personal choices, I present to you eight of the most absurd things people have done with their placenta.
1. Stitch a teddy bear from it
Errr, yeah. This is achieved by cutting and curing the placenta, before drying it out and then stitching it into an adorable toy design. The mastermind behind it is designer Alex Green who said that it helps "celebrate the unity of the infant, the mother and the placenta."
2. Fertilize the garden
Done to symbolise the growth of your child as the tree or flower planted above the placenta spurts up, this is a pretty sentimental one. Just beware of your dog digging around in the garden for too long...
3. Put it into smoothies
Yep, throw it into your blender raw, with your favourite berries and choice of milk, and off you go.
4. Make it into a lasagna
Some people would rather cook it, with several people saying they've added it to lasagnas. Others opted to substitute it for the meat in Shepard's Pie or putting bits of it on a pizza as an alternative, nutrient-dense topping. Bon appétit.
5. Make art from it
Some people choose to make art prints from their placenta. You don't even need paint, due to the fact that the placenta is quite bloody already, and all you need is good watercolour paper before making a print with your placenta. You'll be left with something that looks like a tree, a balloon, a jellyfish, or whatever else your imagination allows.
6. Make it into jewelry
It's surprisingly easy to encapsulate into gem-like forms, which means many mothers are reaching out to jewellery makers on Etsy and Instagram to get part of their placenta immortalized into a ring, necklace, or earring. The results are pretty beautiful, you've got to admit.
7. Use it for facials
Jennifer Lopez and Victoria Beckham are among celebs who specifically seek out placenta facial treatments. It's extremely rejuvenating thanks to the unique type of stem cell found in the placenta which helps generate new skin cells.
8. Make it into body butter
The number of recipes available online to make your own placenta body butter might surprise you, but people say that rubbing the balm onto skin helps reduce signs of ageing, soothes rashes and cuts and even helps heal the scar if you've had a C-section. It involves dehydrating the placenta and then grinding it to a powder to mix into the butter.
No matter whether you choose to keep your placenta after giving birth or not, there certainly are many ways in which you can repurpose it.