Department of Obstetrics & Gynecology
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Nausea and Vomiting
Nausea and vomiting are common complaints
during early pregnancy, affecting 50-80% of women. It is often referred
to as “morning sickness” because the symptoms are often worse early in
the day. However, you can experience symptoms at any time. It generally
disappears by the 16th week of pregnancy.
Although the cause is unknown, it seems to be associated with the
hormone changes that occur in early pregnancy. Also, it appears that
women are most frequently troubled when their blood sugar is low.
Prevention of nausea and vomiting
• Eat small amounts of food every 2-3 hours even if you aren’t hungry.
This will help prevent low blood sugar, which can cause nausea.
• Eat low fat protein foods (lean meat, broiled or canned fish, poultry
without skin, eggs, boiled beans) and easily digested carbohydrates
(fruit, fruit juice, bread, cereal, rice, pasta, potatoes).
• Drink soups and other liquids between meals, rather than with meals to
prevent overly distending stomach.
• Avoid greasy or fried foods, which may make nausea worse and take
longer to digest. Even the smell of cooking foods may cause nausea.
• Eat lightly seasoned foods.
• Sit up right after meals to reduce gastric reflux (heartburn).
• Have a snack before going to bed or during the night.
• Eat a piece of bread or some crackers before getting out of bed.
• Get out of bed slowly and avoid sudden movements.
• Avoid brushing teeth immediately after eating.
• Rest as needed with feet up and head slightly elevated.
• Slowly sip a carbonated beverage or carbonated water.
• Fresh air may help. Take a short walk or open a window and turn on a
• Drink herbal teas (spearmint, raspberry leaf, peppermint, chamomile,
• Consider use of an acupressure band, such as “Seaband.”
• Ginger-ale, ginger snaps and other foods that contain ginger.
• You can take Vitamin B6, up to 75mg per day.