PARENTS
05/06/2015 09:36 BST | Updated 05/06/2015 09:59 BST

Eating Your Own Placenta Does Not Benefit Your Health Or Boost Energy, Scientists Discover

Eating your own placenta does not benefit your health, or protect you against depression, new research has found.

Claims have previously been made to suggest that eating your own placenta is good for you, after celebrities such as January Jones went public about eating theirs.

However, a review by Northwestern University found no proven benefits of ieating placenta, and no research into the risks of doing so either.

Dr Crystal Clark, who was involved in the research, said: "There hasn’t been any systematic research investigating the benefits or the risk of placenta ingestion.

"Our sense is that people aren’t making this decision based on science or talking with physicians."

placenta

Researchers from the university said mothers were influenced to eat their own placentas after being exposed to media reports and reading blogs.

Previously, placentophagy has been said to reduce pain after delivery, help with breast milk production and increase a new mother's energy levels, and much more.

However, the researchers looked at ten published studies on placentophagy (the act of eating placentas), and found that there was no human or animal data to support claims it protects against depression, boosts energy, reduces delivery pain or enhances maternal bonding.

They believed previous claims were based on subjective reports, rather than scientific research.

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Lead study author Cynthia Coyle, a clinical psychologist at Northwestern University, said: "Our sense is that women choosing placentophagy, who may otherwise be very careful about what they are putting into their bodies during pregnancy and nursing, are willing to ingest something without evidence of its benefits.

"There are no regulations as to how the placenta is stored and prepared, and the dosing is inconsistent.

"Women really don't know what they are ingesting."

Louise Silverton, Royal College of Midwives told the BBC: "Women should be aware that like any foodstuff, placentas can go off,"

"It must be the woman's choice if she chooses to do so."

So what are your thoughts? Have you ever thought about eating your own placenta?

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