Why Did Human Mothers Stop Eating Their Placentas in Our Evolutionary Past?


Mar. 29, 2021, 11:30am to 12:30pm

Office/Remote Location



Our very own Dr. Benyshek will be giving a talk titled: Why did human mothers stop eating their placentas in our evolutionary past?

Consumption of the afterbirth (i.e., placentophagy) is a ubiquitous maternal behavior among mammals, including our closest primate relatives. Yet, until it emerged as alternative health practice among a small number of women in postindustrial societies beginning in the 1970s, the behavior appears to be entirely absent from the cross-cultural and historic records.  This talk will explore some possible explanations for the absence of this fascinating maternal behavior among humans.



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Contact Information

Department of Anthropology
Liam Frink

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