Chrissy Teigen Believes Eating Her Placenta Helped Her Avoid Postpartum Depression After Second Baby BY ANDREA PARK

About a year after giving birth to daughter Luna, in April 2016, Chrissy Teigen penned a powerful essay for Glamour in which she described her experience with postpartum depression. In the essay, she says PPD left her unable to leave the couch for months at a time. Her experience in the months after welcoming son Miles in May, however, has thankfully been completely different. In a new preview of her upcoming interview with Rita Braver forCBS Sunday Morning‘s 40th anniversary primetime special (airing September 14), Teigen theorized why she was spared the pain of PPD this time around.

“It sounds ridiculous, but people have this belief that if you eat your placenta, it gets all those nutrients that you lost when you were pregnant, rather than just losing them immediately and losing that rush of endorphins,” she said. “By taking these dry placenta pills, you can kind of keep this energy up and be weaned off that feeling more. And I didn’t do that with Luna so…I remember looking back and being like, ‘I shoulda ate my placenta!'” When Braver said she didn’t think the cookbook author could include placenta as an ingredient in her cooking demonstration on the special, Teigen joked, “Really?! That’s not a normal thing? I’m in L.A., it’s very normal — they grill it here.”

 

Though it’s fantastic that Teigen hasn’t experienced PPD after her second pregnancy, there’s not actually any definitive research linking eating placenta to preventing depression or, in fact, to any other health benefits. According to Self, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention actually recommends that new moms avoid eating their placenta in capsule form since it could contain dangerous bacteria that can then be passed on to newborns via breastmilk or skin-to-skin contact. Additionally, women’s health expert Jennifer Wider, M.D., told Self that mothers who eat their placenta could also see an increased risk of blood clots as a result of ingesting extra estrogen. If you’re worried about PPD or any other potential post-birth conditions, your best bet is to talk it over with your doctor, who can recommend a (scientifically sound) course of action.

The 32-year-old also described another major life change she’s experienced since welcoming two kids and putting out two cookbooks. “I really prefer being happy and getting to eat things that I love, still wanting to be healthy,” the former Sports Illustrated swimsuit model told Braver. “But I just don’t care about looking good in a swimsuit anymore. I guess that’s the only way to put it.”

Just a few weeks ago, Teigen took to social media to talk about learning to love her body. “I think it’s awesome people have killer bodies and are proud to show them off (I really do!!), but I know how hard it can be to forget what (for lack of a better word) regular ol’ bodies look like when everyone looks bonkers amazing,” she wrote on Twitter after sharing a video of herself after giving birth to her two children, complete with stretch marks. She added, “Also I don’t really call this ‘body confidence’ because I’m not quite there yet. I’m still super insecure. I’m just happy that I can make anyone else out there feel better about themselves!”

 

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Science Daily: For women with history of pregnancy loss, walking may aid chance of becoming pregnant

Date: May 8, 2018

Source: University of Massachusetts at Amherst

Summary: Results of a recent study to better understand modifiable factors such as physical activity that may affect a woman’s ability to conceive a child suggest that walking may help women to improve their chances of becoming pregnant.

Results of a recent study to better understand modifiable factors such as physical activity that may affect a woman’s ability to conceive a child suggest that walking may help women to improve their chances of becoming pregnant.

The study was conducted by recent graduate Lindsey Russo and her advisor Brian Whitcomb, associate professor of biostatistics and epidemiology in the School of Public Health and Health Sciences at the University of Massachusetts Amherst.

Russo and Whitcomb’s findings among healthy women ages 18 to 40 years old with a history of one or two pregnancy losses are based on their secondary analysis of the multi-site Effects of Aspirin in Gestation and Reproduction (EAGeR) study. It is led by Enrique Schisterman of the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development. Results are in the current online issue of Human Reproduction.

Russo says, “One of our main findings is that there was no overall relationship between most types of physical activity and the likelihood of becoming pregnant for women who had already had one or two pregnancy losses, except for walking, which was associated with higher likelihood of becoming pregnant among women who were overweight or obese.”

Whitcomb, whose research on the determinants of fertility and pregnancy outcomes usually involves studying biomarkers at the molecular level, adds, “Lifestyle is definitely relevant to these outcomes because it can have an effect at the molecular level. What we eat and what we do are potential factors we can change to shape our health. So this sort of research is important because it helps provide information on the things people can actually do something about.”

Further, he says, “We were happy to be able to add scientific evidence to general recommendations about physical activity. This is especially true for the results about walking for even limited blocks of time. Walking has great potential as a lifestyle change because of its low cost and availability.”

For the 1,214 women in the study, the association of walking with the ability to become pregnant, known as fecundability, varied significantly by body mass index, the authors report. Among overweight/obese women, walking at least 10 minutes at a time was associated with improvement in fecundability. Further, in statistically adjusted models, women reporting more than four hours a week of vigorous activity had significantly higher pregnancy chances compared to no vigorous activity.

Moderate activity, sitting and other activity categories were not associated with fecundability overall or in BMI-stratified analyses, they add. Russo and Whitcomb say one finding that is still not clear is the different associations related to vigorous compared to moderate and low-intensity activities. Whitcomb says, “We don’t know what to make of the finding that high intensity physical activity may have different biological effects than walking, but our study doesn’t offer enough detail to get at why vigorous activity would work differently than other levels.”

Among a number of cautions the researchers point to in this work is that physical activity is related to other behaviors and lifestyle factors, and women who are more physically active may be different from women who are less active in many ways. Russo says, “We did our best to try to account for the differences and to address them statistically.”

The researchers also note that the overall generalizability of this work is limited because the study population may not be representative of the general population with regard to fecundability, and exercise habits may differ in women with prior miscarriage compared to those without.

Whitcomb says another way in which this study is distinct from other work in this area has to do with who was included in the study. The EAGeR trial focused on women with a history of one or two prior pregnancy losses. However, he adds, “We were happy to be able to conduct research considering women having the most difficulty getting and staying pregnant, and to provide messages about common lifestyle factors they may be able to address.”

The researchers conclude that “these findings provide positive evidence for the benefits of physical activity in women attempting pregnancy, especially for walking among those with higher BMI. Further study is necessary to clarify possible mechanisms through which walking and vigorous activity might affect time-to-pregnancy.”

 

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Materials provided by University of Massachusetts at AmherstNote: Content may be edited for style and length.