Pregnancy Series: Morning Sickness

8:04 AM

For me, weeks 5 to 12 were an emotional roller coaster. It had nothing to do with feeling ill prepared to be a parent or deciding how to tell family or wondering how this would change my career path - my emotional turmoil was entirely food-related. Let me explain.

For those eight weeks I experienced some pretty intense nausea. This didn't mix well with the fact that I was, for the first time, a university-educated nutritionist with a nutritional-need-blackhole growing inside of me. The requirements seemed astronomical. I'm supposed to get my recommended daily intake of calcium while being entirely sickened by the thought of dairy? I often called Calvin crying on my lunch break, over a plate of quinoa or lentil soup begging to know why God would want me sick when my food intake is at its most important. No reassurance from friends would help - I felt like a failure.

Well here's the truth: you can only do the best you can and your growing baby's needs are much greater father along into pregnancy when you're mostly likely feeling a lot better. These tips helped me immensely:

1. You feel the most sick when you're the most hungry: eating something (even small) will make you feel better. I kept a box of saltines beside my bed to munch when I first woke up and it worked.
2. It's actually nutritionally preferable to eat many small meals during the day (keeps your blood sugar more stable) so rather than attempting a giant plate of lasagna with salad and garlic bread, plan out your day with some salad here, some veggies and hummus there, and see how much your day improves.
3. Ginger! This is nature's greatest nausea remedy. Try it in any form - fresh or ground for cooking, tea bag for steeping, lozenge... I will even suggest cookie.

For 99% of mamas-to-be this won't last long, so buck up and think of the positive side of things. My prayer was constantly: "Despite my sickness may my little one grow and be happy."

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4 comments

  1. I know this isn't necessarily pregnancy related but I'm wondering if you have any insight or opinions or tips on meditation. It's something that I am just beginning to learn about and would be interested in any thoughts you might have on the subject.

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  2. I'm a huge meditation fan! For some people it works best as a daily, scheduled procedure. My preference is to just take time when I need it to focus on my breathing, tune everything out and receive whatever insight follows. It's like my quite version of prayer, really.

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  3. i'm sure you know this, but there are tonnes of other foods that have far more calcium than dairy! sesame seeds (which, to get enough, you have to eat tahini, really) and most sea vegetables are far more potent than dairy, etc. also, spinach, broccoli, almonds, bok choy...

    - cricket

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  4. I'm a huge fan of dairy-free calcium sources. I plan on switching over them to entirely when I start breast feeding because I've heard cows milk in mothers milk is a recipe for colic. Haven't heard if the same is true of goats milk but if nothing else I'll buy a huge case of calcium-set almond milk!

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