Placenta: what are its main uses and benefits

Sometimes, the placenta It has been seen as part of the components of some cosmetics, and there are even women who have decided to eat it after childbirth. Nevertheless, What really is the placenta? What are its main uses and benefits? Today we will answer these and other questions that you have surely thought at some point.

What is the placenta?

To understand about the placenta what is it and what it is for, first you have to know where this word comes from. This is a term that originates from the Latin language and means circular cake.

The truth is that the placenta is an organ that has a viscous appearance, only pregnant women have this organ and it has a circular shape. It means that this organ only grows during pregnancy and is later expelled once the delivery is over, after the baby is born. It is generally 25 centimeters in diameter, 2.5 centimeters thick, and usually weighs up to half a kilo.

For the baby, the placenta is the most important organ, since it helps him stay alive until the moment of birth. This organ is responsible for supplying the necessary oxygen, food and makes it easier to eliminate the waste produced by the baby. It is found inside the uterus and the mother's blood remains in contact.

The placenta is formed with the same cells with which the baby will be born, and these are the sperm and the egg. It begins to form starting from the second week of pregnancy and has two components. The first of these components is the fetal portion and the second of them is the maternal portion.

How does the placenta evolve in pregnancy?

In the same way that it happens with other parts of the body, the placenta is an organ that changes constantly. It evolves as the pregnancy progresses, from the time it appears for the second week of gestation, until the final stage of pregnancy arrives. I could tell you that this is an organ of the female body that is born, then grows and finally dies.

By the first four months of pregnancy, the most obvious changes in the placenta appear. Especially since it increases in size progressively. Starting from this moment, the placenta will go through smaller changes until it reaches the last stage of gestation. Then it will age and its ability to offer nutrients to the baby will decrease.

What is the function of the placenta?

– It is possible to say that this is a practically perfect organ, due to the number of functions it performs in pregnancy.

– The main placental function It is to enable oxygen, glucose, fats, and amino acids to circulate between mother and baby.

– It manages to eliminate the waste generated by the baby and is responsible for purifying the blood.

– It has the ability to produce hormones that are responsible for transforming the mother's metabolism, so that proper development takes place in pregnancy.

– It prevents the mother's immune system from considering the fetus as an invasive agent. It means that it is responsible for protecting the fetus during its development in pregnancy.

– It works as a barrier to prevent harmful substances from causing harm to the baby, as in the case of bacteria, parasites and also viruses. Although the placenta is not so perfect in this characteristic, there is another class of substance that manages to cross it. Some examples are drugs, alcohol, caffeine, or tobacco. Diseases such as toxoplasmosis, could cross the placenta very easily and cause damage to the baby.

– Helps in the physical protection of the fetus in combination with the amniotic fluid bag. Making the placenta a welcoming and at the same time safe place for the development of the fetus. Maintaining a constant temperature and offering protection against shocks or sudden changes in body temperature.

[You may also like: Scientists find microplastics in placentas of pregnant women]

What are the benefits of the placenta?

The main reason why the placenta is consumed after delivery is based on reincorporating everything that it acquired from the mother during pregnancy. What the placenta somehow acquires is so important, that because of this, women must take vitamin supplements. The benefits of the placenta They are broad, since it represents a contribution both physically and emotionally.

An aspect of great need after the birth of the baby and that is very present in the placenta is iron. This mineral is responsible for preventing postpartum anemia from occurring, but it also helps in the recovery of nutrients and energy. Especially since the mother has lost a lot of blood in childbirth.

Oxytocin is the form that is present in the placenta, also sometimes called the love hormone. That helps in the retraction of the uterus, preventing less postpartum blood loss. Apart from this it serves as a stimulation for the ejection and production of milk. Generating a feeling of well-being in the mother and producing effects of falling in love between a mother and her baby. Which benefits the attachment and reduces depression.

Following this, it should be noted that the placenta is made up mostly of vitamin K, which is considered a powerful anti-hemorrhagic. Making it very useful, since among the biggest problems of care after childbirth are bleeding.

Ways to use the placenta

One of the uses of the placenta most popular is to consume it. Regardless of the way it is consumed, it is considered advisable for all mothers who wish to do so. You don't necessarily have to experience a crisis to consume the placenta. Since any mother after childbirth needs to replenish energy and nutrients. Typically the goal of this is to make recovery easier.

It is advisable to consume the placenta immediately after the baby is born. Adding a cubic centimeter of the placenta to a berry smoothie. The taste and smell are not perceived at all, but the effects it generates are very obvious. According to what some mothers have commented from experience.

Another alternative to consume the placenta is through capsules. These are obtained through a dehydration procedure, which does not require high temperatures. Due to this factor, its properties and all its components will remain intact. Consuming these capsules will depend on each mother. Although it is generally recommended to take one capsule within the first 9 days of the baby's birth.

There is also another form of preservation for the placenta which is known as mother tincture. It is based on the extraction of the active compounds that the placenta has. This being a similar method to that used in Bach flowers. This is how it is possible to create a medicine that is homeopathic, with the difference that it will be made specifically for each mother.

Caution when consuming placenta

Although it has already been commented that Consuming the placenta offers a wide variety of benefits. As mentioned, one of the most common preparations are capsules obtained through dehydration of the placenta, or also by processing it raw. And there are even cases where women consume the placenta raw, as part of a smoothie or even cooked.

However, these are preparations that are not responsible for completely eliminating bacteria or contagious agents that the placenta could have. What's more, the centers for disease control and prevention issued warnings about ingesting placental capsules. Since there was a case where a baby was infected with type B streptococcus, because the mother consumed capsules that contained this bacteria.

Those mothers who are looking for a way to improve their health once the delivery has ended, it is better to consult a specialist. In this way, they will get better information about the steps to take to aid in your recovery.

Source:

Mayo Clinic

Petit world

Children's guide

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