Chances are, the news that you are expecting came with an unwelcome side of morning sickness! Nearly 70% of pregnant women report some nausea and vomiting, whether just for the first trimester or beyond, so it’s safe to assume that women have been searching for and testing baby-safe morning sickness remedies since the beginning of time – and now we know what really works.
A recent review of 41 clinical trials looked into the effectiveness of many types of morning sickness remedies, like acupressure, acustimulation, acupuncture, ginger, chamomile, lemon oil, mint oil, Vitamin B6, and several antiemetic drugs. The review concluded that none of the interventions had consistent, strong evidence supporting its effectiveness, with the possible exceptions of ginger products and Vitamin B6. Does this mean that your friend’s gift to you of Sea-Bands should be thrown in the garbage?
Not at all! The reviewers came to their conclusion not because the morning sickness remedies don’t work, but because many of the trials were not well-designed, or easy to compare to one another. This means that the interventions for morning sickness may, in fact, work wonders, as women have been anecdotally reporting for ages! The following are pregnancy-safe and well-worth-trying natural morning sickness remedies:
This herb has been integral to herbal medicine systems around the world for thousands of years. Studies show that a variety of ginger products can relieve nausea and vomiting after being taken for a few days, so try out a few types and see what works for you – fresh ginger grated and boiled into a tea; dried ginger from a herbal store boiled into a tea; encapsulated ground ginger; or crystallized ginger.
There is some evidence that Vitamin B6, at a dose of 25mg taken 3 times per day, is effective at combating morning sickness. Some studies also add B12 to the mix, so you may consider trying a high-quality B complex supplement, made by a brand recommended by your healthcare professional.
The Sea-Band, an elastic bracelet that rests on an acupuncture point on the lower arm, is a popular remedy for all types of nausea and vomiting. The acupuncture point it sits over, PC6 or Nei Guan, is famous in acupuncture traditions for relieving nausea, and it has been studied and used for this purpose for at least 2,000 years.
It’s important to keep eating during pregnancy, no matter how strong your aversion to food may be. Try eating many small meals throughout the day, avoiding acidic foods and fatty fried foods, which tend to cause digestive problems. Also, stay hydrated by drinking water and replacing the electrolytes you lose through vomiting – instead of buying artificial sports drinks, which are full of unnecessary additives, try rotating between mineral water, coconut water, or mineral drink mixes from the health food store.
While we wait for the research to catch up to the anecdotal evidence, play around with the many home remedies for morning sickness options until you find one that works for you. Don't forget to check in with your doctor, too – he/she may have picked up a few secret miracle cures in their years of guiding women like you through their pregnancies!