There are so many changes going on in your body once you conceive is no wonder some of us literally feel giddy and sick with it. I felt so nauseous in my first trimesters but I never had the relief of actually being able to throw anything up, I just dry retched (very attractive). For me this was especially and weirdly triggered by breathing in cold air strangely enough.
There are many theories about morning sickness. It could be a result of the extra hormones you have circulating, it could be linked to your survival instinct, forcing you to slow down or not to eat a particular food, or it could be down to your blood sugar going crazy. It is also possible that you may have had some nutritional deficiencies prior to pregnancy, or caused by it, and you may be able to reduce symptoms by correcting those. One example of this is the theory that a deficiency specifically in vitamin B6 combined with a high protein diet takes its toll on an essential mineral called molybdenum which our bodies need to help deal with sulfites (so that they can become sulfates), and the need for which increases during pregnancy as the newly conceived baby produces more sulfites. Without sufficient levels of molybdenum we can experience various symptoms like those experienced during the first trimester in particular.
So here are my suggestions:
- A good pregnancy multi may help (before, during and after pregnancy. I used this one from Cytoplan: Pregnaplan), as could supplementing vitamin B6 and magnesium. However, magnesium also needs vitamin D to be absorbed so ensure you get daily sunshine or supplement this as well. It’s a good idea to engage the help of a health practitioner to help you navigate this if you’re not sure (Contact Me if you'd like further support), but a nice warm Epsom salt bath will give you a good dose of trans dermal magnesium (ensure the water is not too hot). Magnesium can also ease constipation and aching muscles, both of which are common in pregnancy.
- If you’re suffering from nausea you can try peppermint, fresh mint or ginger tea, and 1 teaspoon of apple cider vinegar in water before a meal can help with indigestion.
- Eating smaller meals regularly can help prevent you from getting hungry, and is a good strategy for later in pregnancy when baby gets so big you find you actually can’t eat a full meal.
- You may find it unfair that you seem prone to contracting colds when you’re pregnant, but this is often because your immune system has to calm down in order to avoid reacting to your baby (considered a foreign invader!). This is also a reason why women may find some of the health conditions they suffer from easing during pregnancy, and returning with a vengeance afterwards once everything starts to settle down again. Taking a food-based form of vitamin C for colds (1000 mg twice per day) can take the edge off, and you could take this the whole way through pregnancy as a preventative measure. I use this one from Cytoplan: Food State Vitamin C because it also contains naturally occurring bioflavonoids needed for absorption.
- Probiotics are also important to ensure your digestive health is working well and baby can therefore benefit from the nutrients you are able to obtain from your diet effectively. You can supplement with a good quality broad spectrum probiotic, or you can eat more probiotic and fermented foods like natural yoghurt, sauerkraut, kimchi, miso or kombucha (drink).
Hopefully any morning sickness will disappear after the first trimester. After this many women use red raspberry leaf tea to begin preparing and strengthening their uterus for the birth, and studies have shown that eating dates every day from week 36 onwards can help you with a shorter, easier birth - who wouldn't want that!!!
Stay tuned next time for Part 3 - Movement, Birth & Placenta Encapsulation....