Chowing down on afterbirth may not be your first thought after delivering your baby, but it's a practice mothers all over the world have been partaking in for centuries. There are plenty of claims as to why a mom would give this a try and many questions about what this magical mass of human tissue can provide for a new mother. Some may even wonder: can eating your placenta make you hornier? Because all those pregnancy hormones might still be good for something after the baby is born.
In case you're a little fuzzy on what the placenta is and does, it's purpose it to provide oxygen and nutrients to your growing baby and removes waste products from your baby's blood, and it's attached to the wall of your uterus, as Mayo Clinic explained. Since the placenta's job is to keep the baby nourished while in the womb, some believe that due to the strong presence of vitamins and vital hormones contained in the placenta, new moms can reap health benefits by ingesting it, according to What To Expect's website. But the trouble is, there's just not enough evidence to support exactly what eating the placenta can provide.
The thought that the placenta might be able to increase sex drive could be linked to the rumor that taking a handful of placenta pills every day makes you feel happier and more energetic. In addition to this testament, some moms saying eating their placenta also helps in production of breast milk and reduces the pain associated with postpartum recovery. But a research survey published in the Archives of Women's Mental Health found that of the 49 studies conducted, the findings were inconclusive in backing up any of these claims, from libido to milk supply.
But word of mouth seems to differ from the scientific evidence (or lack thereof). According to the American Pregnancy Association, "the majority of the information we have regarding placental encapsulation comes almost entirely from anecdotes of women who have tried it." However, the outcomes are mixed. When U.S. News and World Report asked moms who had eaten their placenta to share their story, the results were vastly different. Although some postpartum women enjoyed a speedy recovery with minimal pain, others eater of the placenta became depressed.
Even though there's no link between a revved up sex drive and eating placenta, you may still be interested in trying out this ancient tradition to see if some of the proposed benefits will work for you. As Baby Center suggested, if you choose to go this route make sure to talk with your doctor or midwife before the delivery so they can be prepared to handle the afterbirth appropriately and help you preserve it until you're ready to consume it.