13 Jul Pregnancy: Month 2: What Our Dietitian Has To Say
Now that you have passed the 4-week mark, pregnancy symptoms such as nausea, appetite changes, tender breasts and fatigue may become a lot more apparent. Nausea during pregnancy is simply related to hormonal changes and is actually a healthy sign. Nausea during the first trimester happens to over 70% of pregnant women and has been associated with lowered risk of miscarriage (probably because the same hormones that make you nauseous are the hormones that are necessary to maintain your pregnancy). While your diet or lifestyle will not cure your nausea, there are some ways you can manage your nausea with diet. Nausea and vomiting during pregnancy can limit your nutritional intake so it is important to find ways to not only manage your nausea but to also get all of your nutrients in through foods that you find appealing during this time.
MY TOP TIPS FOR MANAGING NAUSEA:
- It may seem obvious but avoiding the foods or smells that make you nauseous is the first step to preventing nausea. You might find that you suffer from general nausea and that it isn’t triggered by anything specific or you might find that your nausea is triggered by motion (also known as car sickness) or that it is triggered by a specific smell, texture or taste. If you can identify specific items that trigger your nausea and they are easily avoidable, start by eliminating them from your home and/ or your diet.
- Hydration can play a role in preventing nausea and is also essential for preventing dehydration if you are experiencing vomiting. If your nausea causes you to avoid food, you may also avoid certain beverages (specifically milky beverages) or find it difficult to chug down large volumes of water at a time. Make sure to sip water slowly through the day as opposed to drinking it in large volumes. Keep a water bottle with you whilst at work or doing errands to remind you to keep sipping. If you struggle to drink plain water, you can flavour it with some fruit or lemons and always remember to add ice as cold beverages help to ease nausea. Lastly, if you have been vomiting, it is essential to replace the water and electrolytes you may be losing. Over the counter, electrolyte drinks and sachets are especially helpful for this.
- Even though you may not have an appetite, eating small regular meals has been known to ease pregnancy-related nausea. Keep palatable snacks with you at all times and make sure to have something small to eat every 2-3 hours. This will also help you to get more nutrients in throughout the day. Try these homemade date balls for an easy on-the-go high energy snack.
- Ginger has been proven to reduce nausea during pregnancy and is packed with anti-oxidants. Try some ginger tea, ginger biscuits, ginger flavoured sweets or just chew on some raw ginger if you dare.