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I met the love of my life at the University of North Dakota in January 2014. It was during the first week of my internship at the medical school that I first shook the hand of the man I’d later marry. It only took a couple of weeks to fall head-over-heels in love with my charming now-husband. What a blessing he is to my life!
Fast-forward to a few weeks after our wedding in October 2015. We were still so excited about becoming newlyweds, but God had even more excitement in mind for us. We had conceived our first child, due to arrive earthside in late June 2016. Our family was quickly growing in both happiness and size!
After the initial excitement of conceiving, the beginning of Jane’s life in my womb became unexpectedly challenging for me. I spent much of my time with my head in a bucket, throwing up. I am not sure why it’s called “morning sickness” when it should really be called “all-day sickness”! Anyway, our adventures in lessening my nausea and vomiting began.
Morning sickness. Some women get it, some women don’t. The wide range of individual experiences with morning sickness spreads from feeling slightly nauseated, all the way to hyperemesis gravidarum. Hyperemesis gravidarum (aka HG) makes daily tasks nearly impossible due to the dehydration and significant weight loss caused by long-lasting and aggressive vomiting. A dear friend of mine suffers with this degree of sickness during pregnancy. I can’t help but think of her difficulties as I remember my much easier time with morning sickness! But, no matter where you are on the spectrum, morning sickness is not very fun. Fortunately, I was only sick with Jane up to 5 months, and my symptoms were manageable with natural remedies. I didn’t get very sick when I was pregnant with Thomas, but I’ll include what helped me during that pregnancy as well. Every body is different, so I can’t claim that any of these tips will help you, but they’re definitely worth mentioning. The remedies that worked best for me were:
1. Acupressure: Pericardium 6 (P6), which is a point 3 finger widths down from the center of your wrist. It didn’t take away all my queasiness, but it did make a difference. Since constantly pushing on these pressure points wasn’t realistic, I wore wrist bands called “Sea Bands” that kept the pressure point activated. I did this during both pregnancies and plan to do it in future ones.
2. Ginger candy: obviously, sugar is bad-news-bears. But, when ginger candy is the only thing that prevents you from puking your guts out, you eat it without hesitation! I ate a lot of candied ginger and Gin Gins, which helped keep the vomiting at bay and my blood sugar up (going without food for so long made me hypoglycemic and more nauseous). I tried ginger tea, eating raw ginger, and sniffing ginger essential oil, but nothing helped as much as the candy form.
3. Magnesium (spray and pills): I did not experience benefits from magnesium very much with my first pregnancy, but I did with my second. Magnesium spray works well if you can’t tolerate swallowing pills.
4. Lemon water with sole: like I mentioned earlier, I get a little hypoglycemic when I can’t keep anything down. And then I get lightheaded because I’m not eating, which in turn makes me more nauseous. It helped during my second pregnancy to have lots of lemon water with sole (salt brine) to keep up my electrolytes and decrease my lightheadedness.
5. Try and eat more often: I ate whenever I could tolerate food. Being overly hungry made me feel more sick! I’d rather eat (small snacks) and throw up more often than get way too hungry and feel worse because of it. Keeping snacks by my bed sometimes helped as well, in case I didn’t feel well enough to get up to get food.
6. Eating protein: I couldn’t eat much at all with my first pregnancy, but this helped during my second. Of course, every individual has different cravings, aversions, and tolerances during pregnancy, so eat while you’re able! However, it’s always a good idea to stick with real food, if you can. Some excellent sources of protein to try include pastured eggs, grass-fed beef, pastured pork, pastured poultry, real milk, grass-fed yogurt, buttermilk, and all those delicious dairy products! If this isn’t something you can stomach, try munching on some soaked seeds/nuts or enjoying a bowl quinoa.
Some ideas that didn’t work for me are:
1.Vitamin B6 (sublingual)
3.Peppermint (essential oil and/or tea)
4.Nux Vom homeopathic remedy
Of course, everyone is different and will have different experiences with each remedy. If you’re going to try any of these ideas, please discuss them with your doctor first. Some of them have other applications during pregnancy and life in general, such as magnesium for sleep/pain relief, apple cider vinegar for acid reflux (worked great for me during pregnancy #2), sunflower lecithin for mastitis prevention, and red raspberry leaf tea in preparation for labor and delivery.
After the all-day sickness had decreased, I was able to enjoy my pregnancies much more. I am not a fan of being pregnant, unlike many women, but I loved feeling those sweet little baby kicks. Children are such gifts!
Today, my beautiful baby Jane is a sunshiney, incredibly compassionate, curious little toddler. She is almost 2 years old already! I cannot express how much joy she has brought into our lives. In the end, it was worth it and I’d do it infinite times over in order to see my sweet baby girl’s bright smile. Hopefully these tips can help you or someone you love bear through the difficulties of morning sickness. After all, our children deserve everything and more than we could ever give them. They are far worth the discomfort!
What helped your morning sickness? I’d love to know for future reference!
1. Acupressure point pericardium 6
2. Ginger candy
4. Lemon water with sole
5. Try to eat more often
6. Eat (real food) protein
Disclaimer: All information on this blog is for informational purposes only. I am not a licensed medical professional. Please discuss any dietary or lifestyle changes, supplements, or medical questions with your doctor.
Diane Stanislowski is a wife, mother, and researcher with the goal of restoring the practice of traditional holistic approaches to wellness and sharing evidence-based information with the public.
She lives in Grand Forks North Dakota with her husband and daughter Jane, and receives raw milk and pastured meats from Bartlett Farms.