The term “morning sickness” is misleading, as
this can occur in the morning, afternoon, evening or middle of the
night. Although it is inevitable and unavoidable, here are 24 ways to ease
1. Avoid Morning
Sickness Nausea Triggers
The most common offenders you should eliminate to ease
morning sickness include body odors, stale or leftover food in the fridge,
coffee, gasoline, solvent fumes, garbage, scented cosmetics and toiletries, and
pungent aromas of cooking foods.
2. Make “Designer”
Compare your good and bad days. As much as humanly possible,
design your day to avoid the known triggers that set off morning sickness. If
wet dog smells or litter box stench gets to you, let someone else get them out
of your way. WARNING! During pregnancy, avoid cat feces because they may
contain toxoplasmosis bacteria, which can cause serious damage to the baby.
3. Eat Before Your
Feet Hit the Floor
If you start the morning off sick, you are likely to stay
sick all day. Set a tray of easy-to-digest favorites at your bedside to ease
morning sickness. When you need to use the bathroom in the middle of the night,
treat your stomach to a nibble or two while you’re up. Continue to munch all
morning, carrying your nibble tray around with you; if necessary—yes, even in
the car and by your desk at work.
4. Ease Into Your Day
If you don’t have to awaken at a set time, don’t. Ask your
mate to get up quietly without disturbing you, and slowly wake up in your own
5. Graze to Your
Stomach’s Content to Ease Morning Sickness
Low blood sugar can trigger morning sickness nausea, and it
may occur when you wake up or anytime you go hours without food. Grazing on
nutritious mini-meals throughout the day keeps your stomach satisfied and your
blood sugar steady.
6. Nibble, Nibble and
Nibble on Stomach-Friendly Foods
Because high-fat, spicy and some high-fiber foods are harder
to digest, consume easily
digestible foods to ease morning sickness, such as liquids,
smoothies, yogurts and low-fat, high-carb foods. Avoid hard-to-digest fatty
foods and fried foods when experiencing morning sickness, such as premium ice
cream, french fries and fried chicken.
7. Eat Nutrient-Dense
Include California avocados, kidney beans, cheese, fish, nut
butter, whole-grain pasta, brown rice, tofu and turkey. If peanut butter is too
strong, try almond or cashew butter, and spread it thinly on crackers, bread,
apple slices or celery sticks.
8. Avoid Dehydration
by Eating Foods that Stimulate Thirst
Remember the three P’s (pickles, potato chips and pretzels)
to avoid letting your saliva hit an empty stomach. An empty stomach is
hypersensitive to saliva, and nausea will soon follow. Ease morning sickness by
lining your stomach with milk, yogurt or ice cream before eating a
saliva-stimulating food such as salty foods, or dry foods such as crackers. Try
peppermint candies or gum to help with nausea, but not on an empty stomach.
Also chew gum containing sugar to avoid chemical sweeteners, and eat foods with
a high water content to ease dehydration that aggravates nausea. You should
include melons, grapes, frozen fruit bars, lettuce, apples, pears, celery and
9. Take Prenatals
with your Biggest Meal
Vitamins can be a big trigger of nausea and morning sickness
— unless they are taken with a large meal.
10. Eat High-Energy
Complex carbohydrates act as time-release energy capsules,
slowly releasing energy into your bloodstream and helping to keep your appetite
satisfied. The main food group represented here is grains (rice, corn, wheat,
oats, millet, barley), found in breads, cereals, pastas and crackers.
11. Stick to
Feel-Better Favorites that Ease Morning Sickness
Make a list of foods that help you ease morning sickness.
While this list may change, it can help you avoid food triggers
that make you ill.
12. Make Yourself Eat
No matter whether you feel like it or not—eat something. If
you don’t eat, you will get an acid-filled stomach and low blood sugar.
13. Get Out and See
Visit friends, go to a movie, rest in a hammock, take a walk
at lunchtime or go to a park with friends. Any change of scenery may provide a
stomach-settling distraction to morning sickness.
14. Drive, Don’t Ride
Some women find that by doing the driving instead of riding,
they have less of a morning sickness problem. This explains why the helmsman on
a boat is the least likely to get seasick.
Ease morning sickness by delegating tasks to “Mr. Mom” or to
older kids. Post a list of “These things bother mom…These things make mom feel
better.” Let your spouse mop the floor, cook easier meals, and if the entire
family has to eat cheese, crackers and carrots for a few meals, they will
16. Plan Ahead
If you know what makes you miserable, arrange for detours
around the things that trigger nausea. Follow this checklist:
If cooking odors bother you, consider cooking and freezing
foods on days you feel well.
Buy more convenience foods.
If you are invited to another home for dinner, offer to
bring a dish you know you’ll be able to eat.
Carry your reliable edibles with you. When a hunger surge
hits, the nausea is sure to follow if you don’t have a tried-and-true tidbit
17. Ease Morning
Sickness by Reducing Stress
Prenatal researchers feel it’s better for a baby in utero to
be spared a steady barrage of stress hormones—and stress can increase your
nausea cycle. Learning to reduce stress now is good practice for maintaining
serenity as a new mother. Remind yourself that what your baby needs most is a
happy, rested mother, both before and after birth.
18. Try Acupuncture
Both Eastern and Western medical practitioners describe a
pressure point about two inches above the crease on the inner aspect of the
wrist. If this pressure point is stimulated, it may relieve nausea and vomiting
associated with pregnancy. With other conditions similar to morning sickness,
such as seasickness, Sea Bands® can be worn around one or both wrists. Each
band contains a button to press on the vomiting-sensitive pressure point. These
bands have been proven effective by research studies and are available without
prescription at pharmacies and marine stores.
19. Dress Comfortably
Wearing loose clothing can help ease morning sickness. Many
mothers find that anything pressing on their abdomen, waist or neck is
irritating and nausea triggering.
20. Position Yourself
Heartburn is another common part of the morning sickness
package. This burning feeling, caused by reflux of stomach acids into the lower
esophagus, occurs more frequently during pregnancy when hormones,
again, relax the stomach walls. For heartburn, keep upright or lie
on your right side after eating. Lying on your back is more likely to aggravate
21. Sleep it Off
It’s fortunate that the extreme need for sleep coincides
with the morning sickness phase, so you will want to ensure that sleep goes on
as long as possible.
22. Have One Last
Meal Before Bed
Before going to bed, eat a meal or snack, preferably fruit
and long-acting complex carbohydrates (grains and bland pasta) to ease morning
sickness. These foods slowly release energy into your bloodstream throughout
the night, but are unlikely to keep you awake. Add to these natural antacid
foods—milk, ice cream and yogurt— to neutralize upsetting stomach acids as you
drift off to sleep. Also consider taking chewable calcium tablets, which act as
antacids, before retiring or upon awakening.
23. Eat Anyway!
While it’s not uncommon for women to feel that nothing
tastes good, not eating can actually aggravate the cycle of morning sickness
24. Be Positive to
Ease Morning Sickness
Lastly, choose who you share your misery with. Mothers who
have been there and felt morning sickness will understand; others won’t. When
you’re having a day you can’t keep anything down, keep your eyes on the
prize—the precious baby-to-be!