Nausea during pregnancy

About 2/3 of women experience nausea and vomiting during the first trimester of their pregnancy1. Let’s find out how you can deal with this.

The cause of those symptoms is still unknown but the best theory states that it is an adaptation mechanism of the mother’s body to protect the embryo. Nausea would stop her from eating foods that contain toxins or potentially harmful microorganisms.

Therefore, nausea would be a normal self-regulation process2.

During pregnancy, the mother’s body undergoes many physiological changes, especially hormonal. Among them, oestrogen, progesterone and hCG levels increase rapidly during the first trimester3. Some changes also occur in the gastrointestinal function and, thereby, in the whole system. Nausea can be associated with a slower performance of the stomach. Consequently, the time needed to absorb nutrients and water is increased and the mother can become constipated4.The nervous system controls, among many other things, the parasympathetic and sympathetic hormonal systems. If there is interference between segments of the spine, the operation of various systems in the mother’s body will not be optimal. Careful examination of the spine mobility and the muscles flexibility (including the diaphragm) will allow the chiropractor to determine whether a joint dysfunction is present and cause a system disturbance. A good functioning of the skull bones is also required for an optimal operation of the pituitary gland that regulates many hormones in pregnant women.

There are several ways to decrease nausea other than traditional medication prescribed by doctors:

  • Take smaller meals and eat frequently
  • Take naps
  • Drink ginger tea
  • Increase the amount of B6 vitamin and iron
  • Exercise regularly
  • Drink water (6 to 8 glasses a day) 5
  • Natural approaches: chiropractic, acupuncture, homeopathy, naturopathy

Vitamin B6 can be found in many foods:

  • Bananas
  • Dried apricots
  • Prunes
  • Sunflower seeds and walnuts
  • Berries
  • Soybeans
  • Chicken, turkey
  • Salmon, tuna
  • Sweet potatoes
  • Whole grains

Are you pregnant with nausea? To ensure the proper functioning of your nervous and hormonal systems, rest, eat well and manage your stress. And remember that this temporary mechanism is the sign of a wonderful little being building his nest inside of you!

  1. Flaxman SM, Sherman PW, Morning sickness: a mechanism for protecting mother and embryo, Q Rev Biol. 2000 Jun;75(2):113-48
  2. Barham-Floreani, Jennifer, Well adjusted babies, Well adjusted, 2nd edition, 2009
  3. Gardner Bagnell, Karen, Pre-natal chiropractic care, Instant Publisher, 2005
  4. Fallon, Joan, Textbook for chiropractic pregnancy, ICA, 1994
  5. Rosenberg, Stacey, Natural pregnancy, natural baby, Xlibris, 2008
Christine Bourdeau

Dr Christine Bourdeau, Chiropractor Centre chiropratique Fleury Ouest 212, Fleury W. Montreal  514-385-5100514-385-5100

Joëlle Malenfant

Dr. Joëlle Malenfant is a chiropractionner in Quebec City. She has a postgraduate doctorate in chiropractic care for pregnant women and children. She accompanies women in labour and is a volunteer at Entraide Naturo-Lait, an organization supporting breastfeeding. Joëlle is also the proud mother of a 4- year-old boy, Christophe. Clinique chiropratique Maguire 1452, rue Maguire, bureau 100 Québec, Québec G1T 1Z4 Tél : 418.684.0004418.684.0004 Call Send SMS Add to Skype You'll need Skype CreditFree via Skype

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