Saving Your Placenta Now Legal in Just 3 States

newborn babySome women believe eating pieces of your placenta in small doses (typically dehydrated, powdered, and placed in pills) in the weeks following delivery can help you better handle postpartum hormone changes and healing from delivery. But not all states allow women the right to take their placentas with them after childbirth. Issuing a huge win for women's rights, Texas recently became the third state to pass a law granting women the right to take their placentas home with them after delivery.  


While Texas now joins Hawaii and Oregon in having laws that expressly grant women the right to take their placenta home after childbirth, in other states the issue is a murky one. Policies regarding placenta possession can vary within a single state.

Some facilities label the placenta medical waste and forbid new moms from taking it. Others will allow the mother to take it but won't assist in transferring the placenta to anyone. Other birthing wards will assist you in keeping the placenta cool until you're ready to leave the hospital. If you're pregnant and considering ingesting your placenta, be sure to check with your doctor or midwife in advance about their particular policy.

As long as birthing facilities follow safety precautions, there's no reason why women shouldn't be allowed to take their placentas home. Texas's new law requires two things before allowing a new mom to take her placenta home: The woman must sign a waiver releasing the hospital from liability in the event that the placenta makes her ill and the patient must test negative for infectious diseases. These are reasonable safeguards that could be adopted everywhere to extend this right to all women.

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Even if you don't suffer from postpartum depression, the weeks immediately following having a baby are rough. Between dealing with your physical recovery, the changes to your body, and caring for a newborn, it's easy to feel overwhelmed. Anything that makes you feel more confident as a parent or gives your mental and physical well-being a boost is helpful in those first few months.

Whether it's eating frozen pizzas four nights a week because you can't find time to cook, giving yourself permission to live in pajamas, or starting off each morning by popping a placenta pill, new moms should do whatever they need to in the name of self-care and survival.

More From The Stir: 10 Amazing Things About Your Placenta

It's true that there currently isn't a ton of scientific research backing up the positive medical benefits of having a placenta-infused smoothie for breakfast in the weeks immediately following childbirth. However, there are current studies in progress about the effects of eating your placenta. Just because we don't currently have the data doesn't mean further research won't lead to new discoveries and a shift in medical opinions. After all, breastfeeding wasn't widely practiced just a few decades ago, and now many doctors encourage women to breastfeed.

Even if it does turn out that placenta pills only benefit is placebo, who cares? Although it might not taste fantastic or do much, at the end of the day it's not going to hurt you. And it if helps new moms feel better, there's no harm in it. More states should follow Texas's lead on this issue.

Would you eat your own placenta?

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