Five Tips To Fight Heartburn During Pregnancy

Five Tips To Fight Heartburn During Pregnancy

Acid reflux or heartburn is a common discomfort during pregnancy. Some women experience it more during their first trimester and for others it doesn’t become a problem until their third trimester.But if it hits you, here are five quick tips to help alleviate your symptoms.

Tip #1: Avoid trigger foods

Fatty and acidic foods are known contributers of acid reflux so if you’re struggling with it avoid the following foods: fried foods, fast food, full-fat dairy products, fatty cuts of meat and acidic foods like citrus fruits, tomatoes/tomato sauces, vinegar, chocolate, mint, garlic and onions. Try lower fat cooking methods like steaming, broiling, or roasting. Switch to low-fat dairy products and choose fruits like berries and melon.

Tip #2: Eat smaller, more frequent meals

Even though you need more calories when pregnant eating a large meal can slow digestion and cause acid reflux. Instead, try having mini meals throughout the day to stay satisfied and feeling great. Here’s an example of a mini-meal or snack: whole grain crackers + cheese + a piece of fruit.

Tip #3: Slow down

Savoring your food will not only increase the enjoyment of whatever you are eating but will help you feel better as well. A few tips to help you slow down:

  • Shut off the TV, computer, phone – you’re more likely to slow down if you’re not distracted;
  • Try putting your fork down between bites; and
  • Use chopsticks

Tip #4: Avoid lying down right after a meal

Lying down on a full stomach can trigger symptoms. Make sure there is plenty of time between eating and lying down.  If you need to rest sit-down in a semi-upright position. When you do lie down, try elevating the head of the bed by putting wood blocks or bricks.

Tip #5: Reduce Stress 

Constant stress can also cause gastric reflux symptoms. Identify stressors in your life and figure out ways to manage it.  Some ideas include taking a relaxation class, going for a walk, listening to calm music, talking to a friend or family member.  Figure out what works best for you to manage the stress in your life.

Need more tips on eating during pregnancy? See a nutritionist on Amwell.

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