Even the word nausea is, well, nauseating. Two-thirds of mamas-to-be suffer through a stomach-churning first trimester.(1)
One can only use the excuse “I have the flu” so many times before people start speculating — especially as only 2 percent of pregnant women with morning sickness only have their symptoms in the morning. All-day sickness is much more accurate for most women.(5)
Morning sickness is horrible, but there is a recent study that speculates that it may be associated with a lower risk of miscarriage.(2) This does not mean that you should panic if you feel fine in your first trimester. It is merely giving some solace to the queasy women out there.
There are lots of morning sickness studies, but many are flimsy. In fact, out of thousands of studies, fewer than 50 are robust enough to be relied upon, according to NPR.(3)
Let’s look at the proven remedies, which are so simple that your grandmother might have tried them herself:
It’s such a cliché, isn’t it? But sometimes clichés are true. Ginger has been shown to be an effective nonpharmacological treatment for nausea and vomiting in early pregnancy.
Do not take more than four grams of ginger per day, as it can cause heartburn and/or interfere with blood-thinning medications. Try one gram as preventative and 500 mg every four hours as needed, wrote Dr. Andrew Weil in herb page.(4)
2) Vitamin B6
The studies related to B6 are specifically for nausea, but B6 did not reduce vomiting any more than a placebo. Check with your doctor about the possibility of a B6 shot during your pregnancy, or for advice with regards to the appropriate amount of this supplement.
3) Dietary measures
Break your meals down into more frequent smaller ones. I have a friend who makes a sandwich in the morning, sets a timer, and takes a bite every hour.
Let the meals be bland for now: saltine crackers, almonds, smoothies. Prepare cold meals, especially if scents are triggering a reaction.(5)
4) Stress relief
1) Flaxman SM1, Sherman PW Q Rev Biol. Morning Sickness: A Mechanism For Protecting Mother and Embryo. 2000 Jun;75(2):113-48.
2) Dockrill, Peter. Scientists Just Confirmed The Myth About Morning Sickness and Pregnancy. Science Alert. Retrieved 19 October 2016.
3) Ross, Erin. Home Remedies Can Help Relieve The Misery of Morning Sickness. Npr. Retrieved 19 October 2016.
4) Ginger: Uses, Interactions. Weil. Retrieved 19 October 2016.
5) Lee, Noel, MD. Nausea and Vomiting of Pregnancy. Gastroenterol Clin North Am. 2011 Jun; 40(2): 309–vii.doi: 10.1016/j.gtc.2011.03.009