The Placenta

As you know, my wife is going to deliver a baby in a few months, and we’ll soon have a slightly used placenta on our hands. What do we do with this thing? Any takers out there?

They say that the afterbirth is chock full of nutrients, and most pragmatic people hate to see something like that go to waste. For that reason, some people bury their placenta in the garden, thereby perpetuating the circle of life by growing super-produce laced with human bodily fluids. That’s one option, but it just seems like we could do more with the afterbirth than just use if for fertilizer.

In some cultures, it’s common to actually eat the placenta. This seems kind of cannibalistic to me. Even if I could get over that aspect of it, there are a bevy of other issues to address…

For starters, how do you even get the placenta home from the hospital? Are there doggie bags for this purpose?

Me (rubbing stomach eagerly): “Excuse me, nurse, can you box this up for me? I definitely want to polish this off when I get home!”

And if you were to actually eat it, how would you prepare it? Let’s face it, I doubt Betty Crocker has any recipes for the afterbirth. I think it’s just something you have to experiment with… try different spices, different side dishes, that sorta thing. Then you can start to tackle tougher issues, like determining whether to serve white or red wine. At this point, I’m sure you’re all thinking what I’m thinking: All of this could make for a fantastic episode of “Iron Chef.”

If my wife does go to the trouble to make a placenta casserole, I guess I would try it, just so I wouldn’t hurt her feelings. Of course, all of this is a moot point, since I basically eat whatever my wife cooks for dinner without question anyway. For all I know, I could have had placenta last night… And if that were the case, I would have to say that placenta tastes (and looks) a lot like spaghetti. This is somewhat surprising, as I always assumed the afterbirth would taste like chicken.

Of course, supposing she did make placenta casserole one night, I can’t imagine it being very good. I mean, seeing as how I hate green bean casserole, it’s not like placenta would be any tastier, right? My biggest fear is that she’ll double the recipe, and make a whole bunch of it, and then we’re stuck with lots of leftovers. It’s not like I have a dog or stepchild to feed it to. I suppose I could always take the leftovers to a homeless shelter or something. Who knows, maybe they can make soup out of it. I could probably even write it off as a charitable donation too.

On the other hand, what happens if she serves placenta casserole and it really hits the spot? And as I mentioned above, the placenta is full of nutrients… seriously, it’s like the equivalent of three bowls of Kellogg’s Total. What if I actually develop a taste for it? It’s not like you can order afterbirth as a pizza topping. It could be tough having to go nine months between servings of placenta.

Because of that, it’s probably best if we skip eating the placenta altogether. We’ll just get it bronzed like everyone else.

21 thoughts on “The Placenta”

  1. I wonder if there will ever be a time in the United States when you can drive up to Taco Bell and get a Placentafajita. And I wonder if they would be stingy with the placenta portion of the ingredients in the Placentafajita if they had it.

    But you have given me a new reason to question that summer between 8th and 9th grade where I craved a bowl of fortified Total every morning. I never looked at the side of the box to see just what it was fortified with. Have I unknowingly eaten a small village worth of placentas?

    It is also a known fact of the universe that Tom Cruise only eats organic produce grown in placenta-enriched soils. He says placenta apples make him love the baby inside Katie even more.

    Instant classic post, Centaur.

  2. If you own your own place, you might consider keeping the placenta and using it for something memorable.

    Have you considered planting a tree on your property to commemorate the birth of the child, and placing the placenta in with the tree roots to provide nutrients for the tree? Then, in some way, your child will always be a part of that tree.

    It’s very new age-ish and such, but it seems like a wonderful sentimental idea.

  3. I think it could make quite a fashionable hat. A little placenta beanie for those cold winter mornings. Leave the imbelical cord attache to make the little tassle at the top and you’re all set.

  4. There actually are websites out there with recipes for placenta. The one below has a tasty recipe for roast placenta, they kindly remind you to cut away the membranes before preparing…nasty.

    http://www.mothers35plus.co.uk/plac_rec.htm

    Another story on this website talks about mixing the placenta with V8 and drinking it down. What? Why would you do that?

    No matter how hard the Centaur begs our, or shall I say my, placenta is staying at the hospital in the hazardous waste receptacle where it belongs.

  5. wow. when i heard tom cruise wanting to eat katie homlms placenta on the radio i about ran off the road and hit a homeless guy. and after visiting that site posted above “how to cook your placenta” that makes me never wanting to eat at a neighbor or friends house again!…come to think about it my wifes aunt was pregnant a few months back then she made spaghetti a few days later that tasted rather funny…she said she adds V8 to her sauce…hmmmm…well im going to buy some ipecac syrup.

  6. Is Tom Cruise really going to eat his wifes placenta? Is that healthy?

    I saw a picture and they are mighty big.

    I don’t think TC can do it. He’s a firly small man.

    He does have some Kudors though…

  7. I dried the placenta from my second child. Low heat oven for a long time. The hormones in the placenta are very good for use during menopause–it’s a known thing in Chinese medicine.

    I think it’s sad that all of you once had a placenta as your life support system, yet you now think it’s just gross.

    And, hey, Centaur, are you really expecting your wife to cook dinner for you right after she’s had a baby?

  8. Thank you Tom Cruise…

    Your crazy antics have given new life to an archived post. Just yesterday alone, 1500 people landed here by Googling the phrase “eating placenta” or some variation.

    Now, Tom, do me a favor and get started on building a Spanking Table.

  9. well i officially had placenta last nite. my neighbor cooked it up and i had a bite. hahahaha…nah just kidding…but doesnt it seem like canabalism? your eating human parts…

  10. You asked a good question, which wasn’t answered. How does one get the placenta home from the hospital? Is there a special-sized Tupperware container?

  11. i called the hospital in my area and they said they dont give it to you. it slides out right into those bio-hazard waste bags along with all the other stuff…i belive the people who have it( i’ve done a lot of googling) are the ones who has midwives and deliver at home…one site had pics of a lady and her newborn with it 1 week after the baby was born. they dry it out and save it i guess…

  12. I brought my first child’s placenta back from the hospital and fried it up ‘au natural’. Taste was a bit bland (I am not really a heart or brain man) so I am planning on doing something a bit more culinary this time (second born on the bathroom floor yesterday). I think a split between bolognaise sauce and some dry powder for another day.

    I don’t know about the nutritional benefits but what I can tell you is that both I and my dog shared the first placenta and I beleive that this made the dog ‘at one’ with my baby. If you know GSPs you will know that they are a one man dog; and I had dog then wife then child. She became protective (without aggression) of my daughter and she would not let anyone go near her ‘unattended’ – once I watched her [through the window] follow my friend’s boy inside, overtake him, then block his path to prevent him from going near my sleeping baby.

    Note of caution to those trusting dog lovers though; this all changes when your child starts pulling ears and tails and gauging at eyes!

  13. I was watching a show this morning and they fried it like a stir-fry and put it in with veges and ate it like that they said it was yum….I was like “EWWWWWW HOW CANNABALISTIC”

  14. I love when people start running their mouth, you can tell how ignorant they are. I had my placent boxed up and delivered to my midwife for her to prepare. Dried, ground up into a poweder and encapsulated. I took it in the months after my daughter was born; it helps replace the hormones lost after childbirth, to prevent postpartum depression. It works.

    Just because it’s strange or weird doesn’t mean it isn’t true. Most people do not consume it by eating it outright but they dry it as I indicated above. It is also used in some cultures, they plant it in the ground.

    And you can get it from the hospital~if they won’t give it to you, you can sue them for it.

  15. The thought of eating placenta may be a bit eww but it has to be almost as natural as childbirth itself, as far as I can tell; all mammals eat the placenta after giving birth.

    The placenta is a source of stem cells, I am going to enquire about having our future child’s placenta stored cryogenicaly as it could save his life one day.

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