Morning sickness is common during early pregnancy and it is definitely not limited to the morning for many. These are some recommendations from Sally Fallon Morell’s PowerPoint on Guidelines for a Healthy Pregnancy.
- Avoid low blood sugar, get three good meals per day
- Raw whole milk sipped throughout the day is very helpful
- Plenty of liquids to avoid dehydration
- Ginger, acupuncture, vitamin B6
Theories about morning sickness
Old Theory: Increased hormones levels; progesterone relaxes stomach and intestines, may lead to acid reflux.
New Theory: An “evolved trait” to protect mother from toxins in food. Not a pathology, nothing to worry about.
Sally’s Theory: Increased hormone production uses up cholesterol so the body is unable to produce sufficient bile.
Solution: Eat more cholesterol-rich foods; take ox bile or Swedish bitters with meals.
Typically Swedish bitters contain angelica and gentian, both of which are contraindicated for pregnant women. There is a new product on the market Digestive Bitters Chamomile from Urban Moonshine that doesn’t contain either. This formula features Vermont herbs and roots like ginger and dandelion for the relief of mild and occasional digestive distress such as gas, bloating, upset stomach, nausea and heartburn. Digestive Bitters Chamomile is organic and gluten free.
Drugs for Morning Sickness
Old Drug: Thalidomide, a disaster. Were birth defects due to sequestering cholesterol from developing fetus to production of bile acids?
New Drugs: Zofran or Promethazine, side effects include dizziness, drowsiness, dry mouth, nausea, vomiting and weakness. Effect on fetus unknown. [We have also read reports of constipation with Zofran.]
I asked our community members what have been tried and true solutions for them for alleviating nausea when pregnant.
Community member’s solutions
- Ginger pops
- Ginger tea with local honey
- Dried ginger. I literally chewed it all day long. Also, warm, not hot magnesium salt baths, and plenty of water.
- Sour apples such as Granny Smith – the sourer the better. I would also walk around with a piece of ginger root and I would gnaw on it all day long to help stave off the nausea. I had to eat frequently – small amounts, almost like snacking because as soon as my stomach was empty I was dry heaving! I drank lots of lemon water; just water with slices of lemon and a lot of kombucha too mainly when I would tire of water, I’d “treat” myself to a big glass.
- Magnesium supplements, ginger kombucha, raw goats milk, peppermint and ginger essential oils.
- I really did try everything in the book such as magnesium both orally and transdermally, protien, ginger, peppermint, seabands, etc, and just learned that relaxing about it and not fretting is the best way to go. Our bodies are amazing – and even in a season of not being able to get much food down my experience has been baby will be fine. If I had to nail down the one that that seemed to help the most it would be acupunture. I couldn’t afford to do it my entire pregnancies but did feel it helped when I was at my worst. Chiropractic helped as well and I went weekly at times.
- Water. Water. Water. Protein frequently. Rest. Warm bath once a day. Ginger. Magnesium and Calcium along with a good pre natal. [We don’t recommend pre-natal vitamins in favor of nutrient-dense foods.]
- Candied raw ginger from health store
- Vitamin B6 was a huge help to me. A whole foods B complex. if you are struggling with eating the right food and a magnesium supplement will definitely improve things.
- Magnesium oil spray saved me!
- I’ve seen recipes for magnesium oil you can make yourself, but I ordered this from Amazon. I also added a couple drops of lemon essential oil to my water and sipped throughout the day.
- Vitamin B6 in the morning and magnesium calm before bed is helping me right now!
- Lots of sunshine for Vit. D, foods high in magnesium and B6, and frequent snacking on protein, especially before bedtime. Avoid blood sugar swings. Sprouted sunflower seeds are good. You can even buy them already sprouted and dehydrated at Costco.
- The only thing that helped my nausea was giving birth lol I had to be put on a zofran pump for my twin pregnancy and my daughter’s
- Legumes! The soluble fiber binds to the bile and flushes it out. It works for me in the first trimester with morning sickness and in the last trimester when I get heartburn, too … both issues coming from bile. Read more from Karen R. Hurd.
- Eating serious amounts of good quality protein and organic brown rice with veggies
- Vitamin B6 daily changed my pregnancy
- Smelling essential oils such as spearmint and lavender and citrus. [We recommend Vibrant Blue Oils]
- Eating saltines before getting out of bed. That was a long time ago, and I wouldn’t recommend saltines for anyone today! But maybe some sea salt and a light, easily digestible carbohydrate?
- I did everything under the sun. Acupuncture had a more noticeable difference than other remedies. Seabands helped too. I also did homeopathics and finally resorted to Unisom with B6. I had insomnia too, so that killed two birds with one stone. But later in my pregnancy I noticed gluten seemed to make me more nauseated. If I stuck to the anti-inflammatory diet my midwife prescribed, I felt a lot better.
- I took the Unisom B6 combo but started on B6 before we conceived. I also noticed that gluten contributed a lot to my nausea but I craved it massively. [We would caution women from taking pharmacueticals when pregnant.]
- More fat in my diet.
- Protein snacks regularly
- Nothing helped me but Zofran.
- I know a lot of women that have to resort to Zofran. I tried it, but it made me severely constipated. I wish I could tolerate it, because it worked so well for the nausea.
- Yes. The constipation is horrible horrible horrible. Ugh. I wouldn’t wish Zofran on anyone.
- I had “morning” sickness all day, starting from week 5 – week 40. It was incredibly debilitating, especially because I had to work full-time and had to save what little sick time I had for a wimpy maternity leave. Looking back at all of my symptoms, I’m fairly sure I was very magnesium deficient, which is difficult to rebuild stores during pregnancy. The things that helped me were raising my acidity. I would actually dump apple cider vinegar into all of my drinks and sip it throughout the day. If I had known then what I know now, I’d probably have lots of Epsom salt baths.
- I ate frequently all day from about 4am. I gained a lot of weigh …. 20 kgs. But lost almost all of this within a few months simply by breastfeeding – I guess my body knew what it was doing.
- For me, my nausea was smell/food triggered, not vague and persistent. And particularly, I couldn’t digest fats and proteins hardly at all. Even a salad with no dressing and just a little meat and cheese would sit in my stomack for HOURS and give heartburn. B6 for bile salt harvesting/production and digestive enzymes and HCL for digestion turned it around for me. I still take the B6 or I get the Reynaud’s Phenomenon of the nipples, but only 2 weeks of digestive aids put me back in business and towards gaining weight properly instead of losing it.
- I did stock up on magnesium pre-pregnancy, though. Epsom salt baths, drops in my water and the spray usually on my crampy calves.
- Eating bits of food and sips of water constantly. Especially fruit and meat.
- I found being overly tired made me nauseous as well as not eating frequently enough. It was basically my body’s way of telling me to take a break and get used to making self care a priority.
- Raw milk sipped in the morning.
- Pressure bands that you wear on your wrists.
- Vitamin B6 with Unisom, eating what I was craving, super sour candies, sea bands, peppermint tea, ginger chews and meditation helped a lot when I was really nauseaous.. I had issues with making too much saliva ugh. Does anyone have a remedy for that?!
- Acupuncture and the combo of Unisom and B6. Both work well. [We would caution women from taking pharmacueticals when pregnant.]
- Redmond clay
- High doses of B6, preferably in the more bioavailable form, P5P. I used Source Naturals, and it got rid of my nausea/morning sickness almost instantly and had reports from another friend, just yesterday, that it helped her quickly overcome extreme nausea/morning sickness. I was taking their 25mg lozenges, which is 850% of the “RDA”, which scares some folks away, up to three times a day, in the beginning. I now take one a day, and one extra if I am having any thoughts of nausea. I also got a bit more serious about my topical magnesium spray. I use Food Renegades’ recipe/technique, and Ancient Minerals magnesium flakes, which I ordered from Radiant Life? I took extra B6 before I got pregnant/nauseous, but then held back because of the nausea. Which bit me in the butt! I’ve known for a good spell that I have a genetically higher need for B6 as do many other people, that probably do not know that and feel much better in every regard when I supplement, in addition to eating an extremely nutrient-dense diet. As I now know, being pregnant requires even more, and depletes stores even more quickly. B6 is a main component of many hormones and involved in all sorts of other processes in our bodies, especially pregnant women’s bodies.
- My friend who just found relief with the B6, told me that the pressure bands were helping her, but did not eliminate the nausea/morning sickness. Then the B6 did – she started with 100mg a day, in addition to what is in her prenatal, and found relief within a day or two.