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Did you know that morning sickness can happen at any time of the day?

What is morning sickness?

Morning sickness often occurs during the early stages of pregnancy and is a combination of nausea and vomiting. Many women experience this during their first trimester, usually beginning around week 6. Although it varies from person-to-person, morning sickness often peaks at around week 9 – 10 and subsides by week 16-18.It is not known what causes morning sickness, although some researchers believe it could be linked to hormonal fluctuations. 

Believe it or not, morning sickness is a healthy sign of pregnancy. However, some women may experience a more severe morning sickness (also known as Hyperemesis Gravidarum). Hyperemesis Gravidarum usually occurs during a woman’s first pregnancy, but generally subsides after week 20. Women who are carrying twins/triplets, have a history of motion sickness, or who have experienced it before, are more likely to develop Hyperemesis Gravidarum, but the condition only affects 1-2% of pregnant women.

Does everyone get it? 

About 80% of mums-to-be will experience some level of morning sickness in their pregnancy. Morning sickness can differ from person to person, and reactions to hormonal changes are different in everyone, so morning sickness may affect some more than others. 

Ginger has been shown to reduce nausea and vomiting during pregnancy

What nutrients can support with this?

Ginger has long been known for its use in traditional Chinese medicine. The antispasmodic effect of ginger has been shown to reduce digestive discomfort; however, research has also shown ginger to reduce nausea and vomiting during pregnancy.

The reasoning behind this is most likely due to its 6-gingerol and 6-shogaol compounds, which are the main bio-actives believed to exert the known benefits. In a review of 6 trials, ginger supplementation of 0.5g-1g helped to relieve the symptoms and severity of morning sickness. Alongside this, ginger has also been shown to help with severe morning sickness (Hyperemesis Gravidarum). Additionally, in a separate study, ginger was demonstrated to increase breast milk volume so it’s a great nutrient for women during pregnancy and lactation

What’s the best way to consume ginger for the best impact?

As ginger can come in numerous forms such as fresh, dried, powdered and ground, and is processed in a variety of ways, concentrations of active ingredients vary quite considerably. A recent analysis demonstrated that dried ginger powder products contained the highest quantity of gingerol-related compounds, followed by fresh ginger and dried ginger tea products. Dried powdered ginger can be added to meals or smoothies or taken as a supplement. 

What should I look for in a supplement?

Always read the label to check the source of the ingredients.  Choose high quality supplements which contain 100% active ingredients – no binders or fillers. Check the amount of active ingredient as this can vary. Visit your local health store for more details, help and support www.findahealthstore.com

Author: Aimee Benbow, BSc (Hons), MSc, ANutr. is Director of Nutrition at ethical vitamin company Viridian Nutrition. Working in the food and supplements industry for over 11 years, she has supported people’s health through product development, advice and education.  For more information visit www.viridian-nutrition.com

This article is for information purposes and does not refer to any individual products. The information contained in this article is not intended to treat, diagnose or replace the advice of a health practitioner. Please consult a qualified health practitioner if you have a pre-existing health condition or are currently taking medication. Food supplements should not be used as a substitute for a varied and balanced diet.

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