Morning Sickness: Why does it happen and what can you do to help it go away?

Morning sickness (aka. “Nausea and Vomiting in Pregnancy“) takes no prisoners and shows no mercy. It can strike any pregnant woman at any time during the day–“morning sickness” is a misnomer–and in some cases can last weeks or even months.

Why does this common symptom of pregnancy strike so many of us?

There are several reasons why you may be feeling nauseous during your pregnancy. Increased hormone levels - especially in those first couple months - are one of the most common reasons for your frequent trips to the toilet. Reduced blood sugar levels can also contribute to feeling unwell and bogged down. Many pregnant people also experience increased morning sickness when they are under a lot of stress and when they haven’t rested enough.

What can we do to help the nausea go away?

1. Drinking Herbal Teas

Both Ginger and Spearmint are gentle and safe herbs to use during pregnancy. They are soothing digestives and can provide welcome comfort for mama. Try the Matraea Ginger Mint Tea made with certified organic ginger root and spearmint leaf. Delicious hot or cold this is a great way to soothe your stomach.

2. Use naturally scented peppermint products

Using a naturally scented peppermint body product such as our Organic Mint Bliss Lip Balm can soothe in a couple ways. It’s rich moisture from organic shea butter is perfect for replenishing dry, chapped lips. The organic peppermint oil leaves a light and refreshing tingle behind that helps cool and soothe your stomach and senses. This is a great way to find some relief if you can’t keep anything down.

3. Eat Less, More Often

Eating small meals throughout the day can help prevent an upset tummy. Try snacking on healthy options like apples and peanut butter, crackers or nuts or a couple of slices of cheese to keep your stomach from having to work overtime to digest a larger meal. Most people find they tolerate carbohydrates best in the first trimester, and then start adding higher protein foods as they feel better.  Smaller meals are more easily digested than large ones, and regular snacking prevents you from getting too full or too hungry–both of which can be nausea triggers.

4. Avoid Strong Tastes and Smells

Think of the bland comfort foods that you ate as a child, such as pasta, toast or cereal: generally speaking, the stronger the flavours the stronger the reaction.  Seemingly overnight, pesto or garlic can become intolerable!  Don’t worry, as your pregnancy progresses your diet will most likely return to normal, and your renewed appetite may surprise you!

5. Tried and True Ginger Ale

The trick here is to sip on a flat, room-temperature glass of ginger ale. The carbonated fizz may only increase the discomfort—that’s just what you’re trying to avoid!

6. Water, Water, Water

If you don’t want the added sugar in ginger ale (up to 11 teaspoons of added sugars per serving in some brands) you may find some relief with water. Anecdotal evidence suggests that women who drink a glass of water every hour have much less nausea.  Also, be sure to drink water anytime you get up during the night so that you are refreshed and hydrated come morning.

Where is the silver lining?

Many pregnant people who experience morning sickness in the early weeks and months can reasonably expect it to abate on its own around weeks 12-16 and for their regular appetite to return as well.

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