Where the placenta comes from and other amazing facts (we didn’t know either)

You spend nine months growing it with your baby and you even give birth to it, but where does the placenta come from?

This small but mighty organ is what keeps your baby alive inside you and it’s pretty incredible.

Here are 10 incredible facts about the placenta to leave you in awe….

What is the placenta and where does it come from?

The placenta is the largest fetal organ and it’s your baby’s life support system in the womb. It delivers oxygen and nutrients to help them grow and develop.

But to set the record straight, you didn’t make it.

Even though it is inside you, it’s not from you.

It actually comes from your baby, who began life as a single cell that then divided and multiplied. Cells form to make the embryo and then cells form to make the placenta.

Where the placenta comes from and other amazing facts (we didn’t know either)

In fact, the placenta acts like a liver, as it helps your baby metabolise nutrients. It also acts like lungs, as it gives your baby oxygen and it acts like a kidney, as it gets rid of waste – among many other things.

Did you know that the average placenta is 9 inches across? Plus, it typically weighs just over 0.45kg. The volume of placental blood flow is about 600–700 ml/minute.


10 facts about the placenta

  1. It’s shaped like a parachute
  2. It ensures mum and baby blood never mix, even though they both pass through
  3. It’s developed from the fertilised egg
  4. It forms 6-7 days after conception
  5. It’s a temporary organ, as neither you nor the baby need it after birth. This is why you deliver it after your baby.
  6. Fraternal twins have two placentas
  7. In identical twins, if the egg splits before the placenta is developed then the babies will have their own placenta. If it splits after the placenta forms, the babies will both be sustained by one placenta
  8. Some women choose to eat their placenta after birth, whether raw, in a smoothie or in capsule form. Studies have suggested that it increases iron levels and decreases postnatal depression.
  9. The placenta can carry stem cells and some women choose to donate theirs after birth to those who need it.
  10. It produces a hormone that suppresses the production of breast milk. However, once the placenta is delivered, your body is able to produce milk.

5 ways to repurpose your placenta

1. Plant your placenta

To some cultures such as New Zealand Maori and the Navajo Indians, burying a placenta symbolises a baby’s link to the earth and many do so in a place of significance.

2. Bury it in a special place

For those green thumbs, it’s become quite commonplace to plant your placenta and then grow a fruit or ornamental tree atop of it.

Some put it in the bottom of a large pot and others bury in a garden. If planting in the ground it’s suggested you place it about half a metre deep so animals cannot get to it.

3. Have your placenta made into capsules

Some new mothers have report amazing results after consuming their placenta in dried tablet form.

They believe that their energy levels have been replenished, their milk supply has increased and they feel a lift in their general wellbeing and mood.

4. Use it as face cream or balm

Apparently the placenta is rich in oestrogen, which builds collagen in the skin, and progesterone, which inhibits the breakdown of collagen.

As such it’s often made into a face cream, much like the placenta of sheep and cows are. In this process an unscented base cream is infused with your placenta tincture and essential oils.

5. Put it in your smoothie

It’s been suggested by some that consuming a small piece of the placenta within 24 hours after birth with berries and banana can aid the slowing of your post-birth bleeding.

It’s also thought to replenish your body with essential nutrients.

The Healthy Mummy Pregnancy Smoothie

Sascha Farley Pregnancy Smoothie

The Healthy Mummy Pregnancy Smoothie is a convenient and easy supplementary food, designed to complement your existing pregnancy vitamins or supplements, to help you meet the extra protein, vitamin and mineral requirements during your pregnancy.

The pregnancy smoothie is also free of all chemicals, fillers and artificial ingredients, has no fructose in, no added sugar in and uses high-quality dairy protein sourced from grass-fed cows in New Zealand.

How can The Healthy Mummy Pregnancy smoothie help?

  • HEALTHY INCREASED CALORIES – Additional nutrients and calories are needed in pregnancy to support the mum and the baby – and the smoothie is a convenient and tasty way to increase your calories in pregnancy whilst nourishing your body
  • MORNING SICKNESS – If you are suffering from morning sickness and find eating food difficult – the smoothie is a great way to nourish your body with a easy to drink smoothie- it also contains ginger.
  • TIREDNESS – If you are feeling exhausted, the smoothie is a nutrient dense snack high in protein, B vitamins and low constipation iron to help keep energy levels up
  • CONVENIENT- if you are struggling to find the time or energy to eat nutrient dense and healthy foods then the smoothie will be a great help. You could also have it as a quick breakfast by adding fruit, oats and vegetables to your smoothie to further increase calories
  • PROTEIN & CALCIUM – It is ideal as a high-protein, high-calcium snack in pregnancy with each smoothie giving you 15g of high quality protein

You can all see all FAQ on the smoothie including a list of all the ingredients, use in gestational diabetes, RDI’s for pregnancy of vitamins and minerals when you download the Pregnancy Smoothie Fact Sheet on the smoothie here.

You can also buy the Pregnancy Smoothie in our shop here.




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