When you’re plagued by morning sickness, eating may be the last thing on your mind. But what you might not know is that the right food may be just what you need to stave off daily nausea.
More than half of all pregnant women suffer through morning sickness, mostly in the first trimester when hormones fluctuate the most. While there isn’t a quick fix in medication form, many women find that eating several small meals a day can be the ticket to keeping their breakfast down. The key is to keep your blood sugar levels stable to ward off nausea, never going more than two to three hours without a meal or snack.
Translated into practice, that can be a whole lot of eating. So what foods can you add to your plate? We’ve compiled three tips on healthy eating that promise to keep morning sickness at bay:
The American Academy of Family Physicians reports that high-carb, low-fat dishes are among the most tolerated foods for pregnant women suffering from morning sickness. Soda crackers and plain animal crackers make good, portable snacks – and a simple angel hair pasta can be easy on an upset stomach. Rice, breads and cereals are simple first trimester staples.
Health tip: If you can stomach it, try swapping simple white carbs for their complex counterparts. Look to multi-grain breads, whole wheat or quinoa pastas, brown rice or more hardy grains like bulger or buckwheat.
Heart healthy fats
There’s been quite a bit of chatter recently about the potential of dietary cholesterol to help prevent morning sickness. The short story: Healthy fat and cholesterol consumption pave the way for healthy hormone and bile production. Hormones support a safe pregnancy, and bile, as unpleasant as it sounds, aides in the digestion of fats. If your body doesn’t have enough fat to work with, it won’t have a healthy level of bile. All your levels are thusly thrown out of balance and voila, morning sickness enters the scene – or so recent research from Duke Medicine claims.
Health tip: The operative words here are heart healthy fats. Sure, there will be times when only a doughnut or plate of fries will do, but try your best to focus on eggs, salmon, full fat yogurt, coconut oil and grass fed beef.
Vitamin B6-rich foods
There’s a school of thought that posits a vitamin B6 deficiency is partly to blame for morning sickness. Whatever the case may be, it can’t hurt to load up on foods rich in the stuff. Try filling your meals with chicken, turkey, salmon, spinach, lentils, hazelnuts, broccoli and green peas.
Health tip: Adding deli meats to your meals? Don’t forget to heat them thoroughly in the microwave to prevent the harmful bacteria listeria.
Now tell us: How are you getting through the early days of pregnancy? Share your tips and tricks with other women below!
Morning sickness is no fun. Here’s a free download of our Morning Sickness Diet with tips on foods you can eat to stop or at least alleviate the nausea that goes with morning sickness.