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Common Reasons for Loss of Appetite in Pregnancy

Updated on May 9, 2011

Loss of appetite is a major concern in pregnancy. It is very common in first trimester but sometimes it goes on till end. Appetite loss occurs more commonly in first pregnancy as body is still not ready to cope with the changes and every change is a new experience. It is very important to know the reasons behind appetite loss. Generally speaking reasons for appetite loss are same in most of the women with slight specific changes, however, if reasons are known it can be easily overcome.


Reasons for Loss of Appetite in First Trimester:

  • Nausea Nausea and vomiting are two very common reasons behind appetite loss. These problems are very common in first trimester and usually physicians prescribe pills to control nausea but in some cases it becomes so severe that can not be controlled by medicines and nutritional deficiency results. Weight loss in the first trimester can be due to this reason.The exact and actual reasons for nausea in pregnancy are not known but it is said that nausea is basically due to the hormonal changes and imbalances in blood sugar. 
  • Progesterone This steroid hormone which is secreted in pregnancy slows down the process of digestion in general.
  • Iron Intake Iron pills are given to the pregnant woman in order to fulfill the iron requirement in body. Most pregnant women have low hemoglobin (less than the standard). Iron intake is, therefore, necessary but there are certain side effects of iron supplements. iron causes constipation, indigestion or other gastrointestinal problems. Iron supplements are usually taken early in the morning on empty stomach this usually upsets stomach and cause loss of appetite. Usually doctors change the timings of pill intake in order to cope with this problem.

Reasons for Loss of Appetite in Second Trimester:

  • Slow Down in Digestive Tract With the development in the size of uterus, digestive tract is pushed backward and the process of food digestion slows down in the GIT. The lower bowl movement slows down and hence appetite changes.

Reasons for Loss of Appetite in Third Trimester:

  • In third and last trimester of pregnancy appetite is usually better than in the first two trimesters but sometimes due to increase in the size of fetus stomach shrinks and would-be-mother feel full on stomach and can not eat well. The mother feel full faster than the actual requirement is and this cause loss of appetite or decrease in it.
  • Stress Level Increases In the last trimester of pregnancy mother is more stressful due to child birth or for other reasons related to fetus development, this stress can cause decrease in appetite.


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    • profile image

      Nat 4 years ago

      Did a different person write that last portion about the third trimester? It sounds like broken English...

    • Gabby McMahon profile image

      Gabby McMahon 5 years ago from Ennis, Co Clare, Ireland

      thank you for covering this subject, very informative

    • profile image

      Kb 4 5 years ago

      V informative thank you

    • Fotographer profile image

      Fotographer 6 years ago

      Good useful info! Thanks a lot!!