Some women take comfort in knowing that they’re queasy for a good reason: From a biological point of view, morning sickness might protect your baby, as keeping down only bland, simple foods means that mothers may then reduce the risk of being exposed to food-borne diseases, Women's Health reports. Good work. The root cause of queasy-making pregnancy hormones, specifically estrogen and human chorionic gonadotrophin (HCG), play a vital role in supporting the newly fertilized egg — so women who experience morning sickness are less at risk of miscarrying. (But don’t freak if you feel fine! It’s equally healthy to go symptom-free for your entire term.)
That being said, it's no fun to feel like you have to puke for months on end. Here, 25 ideas to get your head off the bathroom floor:
1. Eat frequently. Have small nibbles at least every two hours, even if you don’t feel like it. An empty stomach will make you feel queasier.
2. But don’t overeat — too full is as bad as an empty stomach for worsening symptoms.
3. Keep plain crackers in your bedside drawer and chomp a couple before you swing your legs out of bed in the morning.
4. Go for cool foods like salads, yogurt, fruit, and cold soup, as warm foods tend to smell stronger. Strong smells = bleurgh.
5. Don’t stress if all you can handle are mashed potatoes and toast. The body provides some “nutritional grace” if you’ve eaten well in the preconception phase — your well-nourished body is able to provide for the growing baby. Phew.
6. Stay hydrated. If water makes you feel pukey, add fruit slices to it. Or try coconut water, fizzy water, or ginger ale diluted with soda water.
7. Right before bed, eat a snack that contains both protein and carbs, such as museli with milk or yogurt and fruit.
8. Cold fluids tend to work better than room temp, so try putting ice in your dinks. Sip slowly rather than gulping.
9. Keep an orange in your handbag. Sometimes the sweet, liquid feeling in your mouth helps.
10. Discover and then avoid your triggers: It might be egg salad, Brussels sprouts, coffee, tuna — you’ll definitely know it when you smell it.
11. Peppermint can help nix nausea in some women. Inhale three drops of essential oil from a tissue, or use in a diffuser.
12. Acupuncture once a month can improve sleep and maintain energy, as well as reduce aches and pain. Book weekly sessions for intense morning sickness.
13. Switch to unscented soaps, shower gels, and cleaning products if the bathroom makes your stomach turn.
14. Apply pressure to the Nei Guan wrist acupressure point — right where your wrist pulse is — with fingers or wristbands.
15. Tiredness aggravates morning sickness — which is why it can be worse later in the day. A siesta may help. Shut your eyes in your car or the park for 10 minutes at lunchtime to help you stay strong all afternoon.