Jenny Schatzle

Tatiana Rubio Tanenbaum

Reproductive Acupuncture, Placenta Encapsulation & Chinese Medicine

EPISODE: 19   |    DATE: December 3, 2020

“Even in just being heard, we start to heal. There is something that happens in the nervous system when we are able to talk and truly feel listened to. There is research around it. The nervous system begins to calm and gets us out of that sympathetic fight or flight mode.”

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Key Takeaways

  • Most patients have anywhere from 7-15 minutes with their OB during prenatal office visits.
  • As a pregnancy specialist, doula and acupuncturist with a specialty in Chinese Medicine, Tatiana has found that she can round out the care team of a birthing and postpartum woman.
  • Many emotions can come up during pregnancy because the womb is a woman’s emotional center.
  • In pregnancy, emotions can sort of feel expanded as if they are being projected onto a screen. Past traumas can come up. A woman can work with an acupuncturist or other healer to help move through those traumas at they come up during pregnancy.
  • There is research that suggests that even in just being heard, the nervous system begins to heal.
  • Tatiana encourages pregnant and new moms to be mindful and gentle with themselves. Some ways to manage emotions that come up are to keep a daily journal, as well as a dream journal. Also, share what’s coming up with your partner so you can be supported in that way. Be open to allowing the emotions to flow through you, knowing that they will eventually pass through.
  • When it comes to due dates and being induced, there has been a big change in the last 20 years. Up until the early 2000s, it wasn’t uncommon to see patients in their 42nd week of pregnancy. But in the early 2000s, there was a dramatic change in malpractice insurance for OBs and their hands became tied. That has changed the standards of care for pregnant women.
  • It used to be that doctors would induce by 42 weeks, but now doctors are scheduling inductions even before due dates.
  • In the Chinese Medicine calendar, there are 10 extra days on the gestational date especially for 1st time moms. That matches what we have seen in western medicine where first time moms typically deliver 7-10 days after due date.
  • If you don’t want to be induced, Tatiana’s advice is to communicate with your doctor that you’re willing to be monitored, and ask what their level of comfort is. Perhaps they are willing to wait an extra few days, and sometimes that all it takes for the body to be ready.
  • In Tatiana’s experience, there are 2 different pathways that acupuncture can help to induce. 
  • Tatiana prefaces that by saying that acupuncture doesn’t always work to induce if you’re trying to do so when there isn’t enough oxytocin naturally circulating in the mother’s body. Acupuncture’s job is to bring you back into balance and that is what can help push a mom into labor.
  • Scenario #1: A mom is past her due date and she begins to feel stressed which creates an adrenal response that inhibits labor. Those stress hormones go to the same receptor sites that the oxytocin is supposed to go to. Doing acupuncture essentially calms the mom into labor, calms her nervous system down so those stress hormones can no longer be released and the oxytocin that’s released is now able to bind where it’s supposed to. This is the most common scenario.
  • Scenario #2: A mom’s body is wanting to go into labor but she doesn’t have the strength either because she’s been in and out of labor for days or even weeks. In that scenario the mom needs to be nourished and fed, so they might do Moxa and herbs that are safe but boost energy levels. 
  • In this case, it may actually be advisable for a mom to have a little bit of pitocin to get her body going into labor. It’s ok in that situation and try not to feel like a failure to get that pitocin because in that situation it can be life saving. Those can be situations where if the mom isn’t able to go into labor or she does and she delivers and is exhausted there can be more bleeding because energy is depleted.
  • When it comes to postpartum, Tatiana recommends three things: 1) stay in and rest for at least the first 40 days with your baby, 2) eat warm, cooked foods because it’s easier on the digestive system, and 3) if you must be out and about (and even go back to work after a few months), try to rest in the afternoons as much as possible.
  • There is a magic time between 3 and 5pm in Chinese medicine where it is believed that if you lay down during that time, it replenishes your adrenal glands. If you can rest that entire 2 hours, great! If you can get 20 minutes, that’s great too.
  • For sleep deprived and/or overextended mamas, Tatiana advises to avoid caffeine in the morning and sugar in the afternoon. This will only serve to deplete your energy later on.
  • A better alternative is to try mushroom tea in the morning, so you still have that ritual of drinking something hot but not the after effects of the caffeine.
  • Another recommendation is to add in a good B complex, as well as to curb afternoon sugar cravings with something more natural like dates or a sugar free oatmeal lactation cookie.
  • Tatiana has encapsulated 445 placentas in the last 17 years. 
  • In Chinese medicine, they have been using placentas as an herb for a long time because they have noticed that it: 1) tonifies and strengthens the chi and the blood, 2) is rich in iron (and can raise your iron postpartum faster than a supplement), 3) gives you energy 4) is full of B vitamins 5) has naturally occurring opiates so it can be used as a pain reliever and mood stabalizer (and therefore can be used to help with postpartum mood disorders), and 6) it can increase breast milk. 
  • Eating your placenta (in pill form) can also balance hormones postpartum.
  • In Tatiana’s experience, women have reported noticing a difference in not encapsulating with their first birth, but doing it with their second, particularly in terms of breast milk production and irritability.
  • Tatiana herself noticed a big difference when she got too busy to encapsulate her placenta after having her second child, and dealt with postpartum depression for 14 months after her second child was born. She did not experience that after giving birth to her first child.
  • Ultimately, deciding to encapsulate your placenta is a personal choice.

About Tatiana

Tatiana is a passionate women’s health advocate and intuitive healer who has been supporting women with acupuncture and traditional Chinese medicine for over twenty years. She is also a birth doula, placenta encapsulation specialist and mother of two. A longtime advocate for empowerment and expression, Tatiana sees women through transitional times in life like pregnancy and menopause when a woman’s physical and emotional health needs to be supported simultaneously. 

In addition to her private practice, she also treats patients remotely by using functional lab analysis, nutrition, Chinese herbal medicine and lifestyle coaching through online Telehealth consults. 

Her newest endeavor, Harmony Women’s Retreats, is an online forum to gather women together in circle and song, to find their voices, heal and connect, with weekly women’s circles like  “Finding Your Voice” and “Joyful Cooking, Mindful Eating”. Once we can gather again in person, these retreats will have yearly excursions to Costa Rica and Italy respectively. Please email if you’d like to be put on the mailing list for future events. 


Tatiana’s website:

Women’s Retreat website:



Resources in this episode

Raven Lang – One of the first home birth midwives in California, according to Tatiana (American Board of Oriental Reproductive Medicine) – to find a reproductive acupuncturist in your area

Mudwtr – Mushroom tea company Tatiana suggests as an alternative to coffee

Study that showed a correlation between children’s IQ and sugar intake 

Genesis Acupuncture – Tatiana’s website

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