Ever wondered what it’s like being pregnant in the royal family? Princess Kate Middleton just like any other mother to be, suffers from morning sickness just the same as us… sometimes worse!
Hypermesis Gravidarum, which Princess Kate has been diagnosed with; is different from normal morning sickness.
Hypermesis Gravidarum is a severe form of nausea and vomiting which can cause complications such as dehydration and developmental issues for the baby if not properly managed.
The same natural treatments are recommended, however hospitalisation and medical rehydration may be required, so close monitoring of the condition is essential.
It is often said that women carrying twins are more likely to have severe morning sickness, however each pregnancy, each baby and each mother is different. No direct correlation between having twins and having morning sickness has been proven.
So how do you effectively treat morning sickness?
Ginger is a great anti-nausea, used commonly for morning sickness and for the more severe condition Hypermesis Gravidarum. It can be taken in the form of tablets, tea or even simply chew on raw ginger shavings or as ginger ‘lollies’ from the health food store.
You will often find tablets branded as travel sickness tablets, all still the same thing. In tablet form, look for around 400 – 500mg ginger. This can be taken every 2 hours as required or 1 three times per day as a maintenance dose.
Another simple and effective natural treatment to use is acupressure.
The anti-nausea acupressure point is on the inside of your wrist. You can find it by laying three fingers flat across the inside of your wrist where your hand starts. The acupressure point falls on the other side of your three fingers. You can either hold this point with your other hand or you can purchase special bands, again often labelled for travel sickness, which you can wear to permanently press on this point.
Vitamin B6 is another treatment effective for morning sickness. Vitamin B6 is best taken in divided doses of 5 – 25mg over the day. Some prenatal supplements provided B6 in it’s activated form of Pyridoxal-5-phosphate which is beneficial to optimise absorption. However no more than 100mg should be consumed in one day unless under medical supervision.
Another important thing to note is that your pregnancy supplement may actually be causing your morning sickness. I’ve had many women come to me complaining of morning sickness and by simple changing their supplement we’ve been able to relieve the nausea.
This is largely due to the high iron content of some prenatal supplements. Iron is important during pregnancy, working in combination with folate and B12 in the synthesis of DNA. However, it’s important to note that iron is a heavy metal and is not easily excreted by the body so it’s just important to get enough, as it is not to take too much.
NOTE: Too much iron can be very harmful!
The recommended intake for iron during pregnancy is 27mg and 18mg prior to conception. The Upper Safe Limit is 45mg. However, some prenatal supplement provide well above these recommended levels. This high intake is highly likely to cause nausea, digestive upset and constipation. Symptoms which many women attribute to morning sickness.
Iron is best taken in lower doses around 8mg, alongside healthy dietary intake. If more iron is required, a supplement of up to 24mg can be added, taken with food at an alternate time of day to your regular prenatal. It’s also best to look for supplemental iron in the form of an iron amino acid chelate, which is the best absorbed and best tolerated form of iron. Alternatively, liquid iron supplements such as floradix, ferro force or spa tone provide great natural sources if you require extra iron alongside your prenatal.