Eat small, frequent meals and snacks throughout the day so your stomach is never empty. Some women find that carbohydrates are most appealing when they feel nauseated, but one small study found that high-protein foods were more likely to ease symptoms. Whatever you eat, eat it slowly.
Avoid lying down after eating (especially on your left side), as this can slow digestion.
Keep simple snacks, such as crackers, by your bed. When you first wake up, nibble a few
crackers and then rest for 20 to 30 minutes before getting up. Snacking on crackers may
also help you feel better if you wake up nauseated in the middle of the night. Getting up slowly in the morning—sitting on the bed for a few minutes rather than jumping right up—may also be helpful.
Brush your teeth and rinse out your mouth after eating.
Watch for non-food triggers. A warm or stuffy room, the smell of heavy perfume, a car
ride, or even certain visual stimuli, like flickering lights, might trigger your nausea. Changing positions too quickly may also be a trigger. Avoidance of triggers can become an important part of your treatment.
Try taking your prenatal vitamins with food or just before bed. You might also want to ask your healthcare provider whether you can switch to a prenatal vitamin with a low dose
of iron or no iron for the first trimester, since this mineral can be hard on your digestive system. If the prenatal vitamin still makes you nauseated, ask for other alternatives.
Don’t be too concerned if only a few foods appeal to you while your morning sickness is at its peak, even if they don’t add up to a perfectly balanced diet.
Avoid fatty foods, which take longer to digest. Spicy and acidic foods can irritate your digestive system. You may find bland foods are less upsetting to your stomach.
Try drinking fluids mostly between meals and not during mealtime. You might find cold, carbonated beverages easiest to keep down. (Some women also find sour drinks, such as lemonade, easier to handle.) Some women find that eating and drinking at the same time can trigger nausea. Just make sure that you make up for the lost fluids at other times of the day, since dehydration can also cause nausea.
Don’t drink so much at one time that your stomach feels full, as that will make you less hungry for food. A good strategy is to sip fluids throughout the day. Try using a straw if sipping isn’t going well.
Aim to drink about a quart and a half each day. If you’ve been vomiting a lot, try a sports drink that contains glucose, salt, and potassium to replace lost electrolytes.
Eating vitamin B6-rich foods, such as avocados and chicken, may relieve your symptoms.
Try ginger, an alternative remedy thought to settle the stomach and help quell queasiness.
See if you can find ginger ale made with real ginger. (Most supermarket ginger ales do not contain real ginger) Grate some fresh ginger into hot water to make ginger tea, or see if ginger candies or crystallized ginger helps.
Research shows that taking powdered ginger root in capsules may provide some relief. Unfortunately, there’s no way to be sure how much of the active ingredient you’re getting in these ginger supplements, so talk to your provider before taking them. (As with many other things that are helpful in small amounts, the effects of megadoses are unknown.)
Some women find similar relief from sipping peppermint tea or from sucking
peppermint candies, especially after eating.
Keep well hydrated, sipping iced water, lemon juice, barley water, or
whatever you can manage.
Identify your triggers and avoid them. You may find that you feel fine unless you encounter a
food (usually something high-fat and greasy) or odor (such as perfume, cigarette smoke, coffee, and strong cooking smells) that you find particularly offensive. Some experts suggest eating your meals next to an open window to minimize the number of odors you’re exposed to while you’re eating.
Experiment until you find one or more foods that appeal to you.
Don’t force yourself to eat foods that make you feel worse just because they’re good for you.
If you’re going to throw up all the nutritious foods you’re eating, you’re better off just eating
what you can keep down, and making up for it when you feel better.
Carry around a slice of lemon inside a small plastic bag. Some women find that sniffing lemon helps to settle their stomach. Others find similar relief from mint or grated ginger root.