Canada warns of the health risks of eating human placenta Society


For several years, the consumption of human placenta (whether raw, cooked, in shakes or capsules) has become a matter of debate and business in different countries. Those who protect this practice – what specific term is plagiarism – argues that it helps prevent postpartum depression, increases energy levels and stimulates the production of breast milk. In addition, they emphasize that it is very common between different kinds of mammals. Figures from the entertainment world, from Tom Cruise to Kim Kardashian have recognized the intake of this epimenormal organ. There are even recipe books. Its consumption is also promoted in some circles of alternative medicine.

On November 27, Canada was the list of countries that warn about the risk of its consumption: "eating the placenta or consuming it in capsules is a personal decision, but the mother must understand that there are potential risks for you and the baby, Just as there is no scientific evidence that its consumption has benefits, "says the Ministry of Health. They also warn that the practice can involve risk to health. "The most serious are bacterial in nature (for example, group B streptococci) or connected to viral contamination of the placenta (hepatitis, HIV, among others)," the doctor said. In this way, the Canadian authorities coincide with those of other countries and with research from different academic institutions.

Canada does not allow any health product that contains human placenta. With a quick search on the Internet you can find some Canadian groups that recommend the use of the organ, as well as different pages (in cities such as Toronto, Vancouver and Montreal) that support support to process plasentas in capsules. The average cost to bring the original and transform it to 250 Canadian dollars (about € 165). "Many minerals and hormones that the placenta contains helps fight the symptoms of postpartum depression," says one of the websites, though it does not provide scientific documents to prove it.

Noemie Vanhever, spokeswoman for the Ministry of Health and Social Services of Quebec, tells the newspaper that fathers and mothers can request that the placenta be delivered to hospital, but must write to follow a series of measures to reduce health risks . For example, wear waterproof gloves and make sure that the organ does not come in contact with people who do not use protection or animals. The placenta can not be sold or assigned to third parties. "In Quebec, these requests are marginal, if they are not climbed, the placental are treated as the rest of the anatomical waste," Wanehavenwine points out. For her, Johanne Côté, executive director of the Order of Midwives of Quebec, says that her institution does not yet have an official position on the topic. In general, the Public Security Association of Ontario has demanded that the risks of infection can be spread with greater force among the medical staff and the inhabitants of the province.

The testimonies expressed in different media about the supposedly placental plague properties are numerous. However, the scientific community is more inclined to the placebo effect, since the results are not tested with methodological severity and because they involve risk for health. The American Medical Association does not recommend this practice, citing a study by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention of the Country on Bacterial Contagion. The British Association of Obstetricians and Gynecologists has stated that its benefits are not known. In Australia, the department of medical products of the Department of Health issued January this year a warning about the possible risks of human placental consumption.

Other investigations, led by famous institutions, point in the same direction. For example, experts from the University of Austria found that no hormone or nutritive substance with the placenta is potentially beneficial after the capsules were made. In turn, a study conducted by researchers at the University of Nevada found that there are no significant differences between a group of women who took pills with placenta and another who had ingested capsules with dehydrated beef. Now it is the Canadian authorities that connect the voices about a practice that has not exceeded its anecdotal character.

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