There are some wonderful things about being pregnant, but heartburn definitely isn’t one of them! The burning sensation feels like you’ve stuck a flaming stick down your throat and lit a fire in your belly. Many pregnant women have gone as far as saying that their heartburn during pregnancy was actually worse than their morning sickness! Here are some natural remedies that will help you ward off that heartburn!
Before we even get to what foods may help with your heartburn, you may need to re-adjust how you eat:
During your meal
Take off those skinny jeans and put on some sweat pants! Tight fitting clothes can put pressure on your already tightly packed organs and increase acid reflex in your stomach. For the same reason that you shouldn’t wear tight clothes, you should eat smaller meals to avoid that ‘stuffed to the brim’ feeling. Your organs will thank you for feeling less squished too!
Try to avoid liquids while you eat as this will dilute your digestive enzymes and also place additional pressure on your growing stomach. Also make an effort to eat slowly and take smaller mouthfuls as this will allow your stomach to properly digest your food and not pump out excess acids.
After your meal
After you’ve finished eating your meal, you might feel like having a little lie down to stretch out your stomach but this can cause the acid to rise back up into your esophagus. Try to keep yourself upright and not bend down. This also means it’s best not to sleep within 3-4 hours before you go to bed too!
Foods which help reduce heartburn symptoms
It is worth mentioning that you should steer clear of foods that are high in acid (the citrus family, tomatoes, onions) or spicy foods as they can play around with the acidity in your stomach. Here are some foods which can help ease your heartburn:
Aloe vera juice: Not the nicest tasting thing in the world but aloe vera helps to reduce inflammation. Just make sure you purchase aloe juice that you can ingest (not topical).
Apple cider vinegar: It might sound counter-intuitive to have an acidic vinegar but heartburn is caused by low stomach acid. Drinking an acidic cider vinegar tells your stomach to stop producing more acid and helps it re-balance acid levels. Again, not the nicest tasting thing but you can dilute 1 teaspoon with a cup of warm water.
Fennel Seeds: These little guys are a heartburn wonder because they help to sooth the digestive tract and decrease inflammation. Just pop 1 tablespoon into a cup of boiling water and then strain before you drink it!
Papaya: One of the nicer things you can eat for heartburn, papaya helps the digestive system to break down food via an enzyme called papain. If you don’t like the taste of papaya, you can also buy chewable papaya enzymes at health food stores which you can eat before/ after your meals.