Around 90% of women are affected by morning sickness during their pregnancy. Theorists believe that this nauseous feeling may be a reaction to certain smells and foods toxic to the developing foetus. It is certainly plausible that pregnant women’s bodily functions would respond violently to environmental pathogens that may prove harmful to her baby. This knowledge corroborates with the evidence that morning sickness is generally worse during the sixth to the twelfth week of foetal development when the foetus is most vulnerable. It has also been theorised that this morning sickness is a product of the changing levels of the hormone human Chorionic Gonadotrophin (hCG) in the bloodstream. This is then often exacerbated by dips in blood sugar and deficiencies in magnesium, zinc and vitamin B6. Whilst this may all sound complex, the tips I provide are simple. For instance, 2% of women suffer from hyperemesis gravidarum, which requires hospital treatment to avoid dangerous levels of dehydration. Yet, by hydrating and replenishing your body with an isotonic drink or coconut water, lost electrolytes can be replaced.
It must be understood that morning sickness cannot always be alleviated completely, but by absorbing and acting upon the following tips, the symptoms should lessen.
1. Eat little and often
Low blood sugar and the associated hunger pangs trigger nausea, so it is best to eat something as soon as you wake up and then frequently throughout the day to avoid the feeling of hunger. Crackers or toast should be enough to settle your stomach when you can not keep other foods down.
2. Do not overeat!
Make sure you do not overeat, since stretching the stomach can also cause nausea. Fuel your body with the right foods, such as an iron-rich diet of red meats and pulses – to prevent further potential complications in pregnancy such as anaemia.
3. Drink fresh ginger tea
Ginger is fantastic for all types of nausea and is safe for pregnant women. In a review published by Obstetrics & Gynaecology, 1g of fresh ginger root a day over 4 days was shown to significantly reduce the symptoms of morning sickness. I have specially curated an incredibly beneficial recipe! Ginger, Turmeric and Cinnamon tea
4. Stay hydrated
Drink at least 1.5 litres of water to stay adequately hydrated, and more if you are vomiting. During pregnancy, it is important to drink small amounts of water throughout the day, and you may even find sparkling water more soothing on the stomach than still water.
If you are suffering from morning sickness, you may be losing key nutrients. Replenish your body with an isotonic drink or coconut water to replace lost electrolytes.
5. Get a good night’s sleep
Try to sleep for at least 8 hours per night and rest whenever you feel tired. You are more likely to feel nauseous when tired. It may sound a simple one, but it is of fundamental importance. For more advice on how to ensure good sleep hygiene, check out my blog post article here.
6. Vitamins can make you feel worse!
Take any vitamins and other supplements with food and plenty of water. If these Taken alone, these nutrients can overwhelm your digestive system and exacerbate your morning sickness. Take a look at the NHS website to find out more about vomiting and morning sickness in pregnancy. There are a plethora of different tips and suggestions in place to aid your well-being whilst pregnant, and it is crucial that you act on these to support your pregnancy experience. It is fundamental to absorb the information provided from nutritional experts, as the tendency to just reach for vitamins can exacerbate your morning sickness, further adding to your discomfort.
7. Avoid fatty and spicy foods
Some women find that fatty foods and spicy foods intensify morning sickness, so it’s best to avoid these during pregnancy.
8. Visit a nutritional therapist
You are more vulnerable to morning sickness if you have Insufficient stomach acid, digestive enzymes, and bile. A Nutritional Therapist can do a simple test to determine whether this may be a contributing factor and recommend a supplement programme to correct any imbalances.
A Nutritional Therapist can recommend a supplement programme to correct any imbalances and can aid your pregnancy journey.