With week 14 well underway, it’s pretty safe to say: I beat morning sickness. Woo-hoo!
Good thing too, seeing as I have an irrational fear of vomiting that could have put me into shock and possibly meant a hospital trip.
Now, I know a good part of this is luck, maybe genetics, but I did get the odd burst of queasiness. And I managed to not just suppress them, but nip them in the bud. There’s plenty of advice out there on managing morning sickness. This isn’t about that. This is about doing everything in your power not to get it in the first place. And it won’t work for everyone, but it’s just my personal experience in hopes it could help someone else who struggles with emetophobia.
1: Avoid slushy, easily digested food.
The one thing sure to bring on a rumble in my stomach or the smell of reflux was food that dissolves when it hits your stomach. Gooey cakes, yoghurts or even chocolate, any combination of smooth fats and simple sugars is a nightmare. Fast food and other foods with a high GI cause the same mess. Likewise for smoothies, juices and other blended foods. It’s like a food volcano.
Instead, opt for eating whole foods as much as possible. Fresh fruit and vegetables, well cooked lean meats, roughly mashed beans and starches. Minimize simple sugars, fats and salts and focus on fibre, protein and starch for a bedded stomach.
2: Eat plain, dry foods often.
This isn’t just for when you feel it coming on! Almost every well-seasoned mum has told me that if you nibble often, you can mitigate or even send away morning sickness.
Pick something bland and plain, preferably starch or fibre based, that is nice and dry. Corn cakes and home-made bread were my foods of choice, but crisps/chips, rice cakes, crackers and wafers work too. Try and go for whole grain or high fibre options, though, as the plainer and whiter the starch is, the more likely it is high GI or sweetened, which could bring you right back to step one.
3: Trust your nose.
I had an aversion the whole first trimester, but it was a huge one: mussels. Jon and I were eating a Thai fish noodle thing. And he was raving about it. But it tasted… very wrong to be. Still, cause Jon was enjoying it I put on a brave face and finished my bowl. BIG mistake. The next day I had reflux, was almost sick when I sat up and got stomach cramps. Bear in mind this was not food poisoning: Jon, whose digestive system normally can’t handle my “healthy snacks”, ate the whole bowl and then had more the next day and the following day with no issue.
So take this note: sniff your food, lick your food, spit it out if you need to. But don’t swallow something your body is repulsed by. Because even if there’s nothing wrong with it, if your body says “no” it will come out anyway. Your body laughs at wholesome tomato salad. Your body does not believe in a lentil soup. One way or another it will come out.
4: Sip and nibble when in motion.
Motion sickness really got me. Fast moving was fine, but a long car trip was the closest I came to actually experiencing morning sickness in full. Almost constantly queasy, tired, smell of reflux on my breath. And the one thing that beat it down, counterintuitively, was constant sipping and nibbling.
Eating properly will make it worse, as will a proper swig of fluid. But just let morsels the size of an average coat button pass your lips every thirty seconds and you should find yourself not getting (as] sick when you’re out and about.
5: Move deliberately.
Again, this ties into motion sickness. Because a lot of my sickness was actually caused by movement, I worked out that slower, more deliberate movements reduced my motion sickness and made me happier.
Think about your movements before you start. Don’t do anything that could spike or crash your blood pressure, basically. Get up slowly, sit down slowly, lie down slowly, walk slowly, have a good look at stairs and hills before climbing them. Just be mindful of your movements to reduce motion sickness.
And that’s what I did to reduce my morning sickness whenever it surfaced. I understand that for many women it’s just an ordeal that needs to be got over. But anything you can do to reduce it, in any way, matters. So I hope I helped!
How did you handle your morning sickness? Any other tips for women who are having morning sickness troubles?
TTFN and Happy Hunting!