What Your Friends Forgot to Tell You.
Pregnancy can be uncomfortable. Really uncomfortable. Many moms feel sick to their stomach during the first few weeks or months, and the littlest things can make you throw up. “You have probably heard it called ‘morning sickness’ but it can strike at any time of the day,” says Katie Oliver, RD, Registered Dietitian at Texas WIC. “Eating small snacks throughout the day, like toast or cheese, can actually help with nausea, even when you don’t feel like eating.”
As things progress and baby starts to crowd your belly, heartburn and constipation are common. If you are suffering, know that you are not alone. There are things you can do to feel better. Here are some tips and tricks to help make your pregnancy more comfortable.
Nausea and Vomiting (Morning Sickness)
If you have an upset stomach or don’t feel hungry, try to:
- Avoid foods with strong smells. Skip the spicy, greasy and fried foods.
- Eat several small meals to keep from having an empty stomach. Have healthy snacks nearby if you are working or in the car.
- Keep crackers, baked chips or dry cereal near your bed. When you wake up, eat a few bites and rest for a minute before getting out of bed.
- Get out of bed slowly. Take a few breaths first.
- Get plenty of fresh air, especially if you start to feel sick.
- Drink liquids between meals, not with them. Limit or avoid drinks with caffeine.
Heartburn and Indigestion
Pregnancy can cause the muscles in your stomach to relax, which slows down digestion. This can cause a painful burning in your throat and upper chest, or a bloated feeling. Here are a few suggestions to ease the pain:
- Try not to eat too much at one meal. Instead, have several smaller meals throughout the day.
- Wear clothes that are loose around the waist. Belts are not your friend.
- Don’t bend over or lie down for 1-2 hours after eating.
- Prop your head up with a pillow in bed.
- Avoid or limit spicy, greasy, acidic and fried foods.
- Avoid soft drinks and drinks with caffeine.
Constipation means having less frequent bowel movements. It can also cause hard or dry stools that are difficult to pass. Here are some tips to help get things moving:
- Drink 8 to 10 glasses of water every day.
- Eat foods that are high in fiber. Try fruits and vegetables, beans, whole grain breads and cereals.
- Get plenty of exercise. Moving your body helps keep you regular. Walking is a good choice for most pregnant women.
- Drink prune juice or eat dried fruits like prunes, apricots or raisins.