- Women's Health
How to Relieve Heartburn During Pregnancy
Why is Heartburn Such a Pain During Pregnancy?
This was my first question when I got into my third trimester, because honestly I have never had much of a problem with heartburn before then. Well this is the answer I found: during pregnancy your placenta actually produces a hormone (progesterone) which relaxes the muscles of your uterus and the valve that separates you esophagus from your stomach, which means all the gastric acids in your stomach are more likely to creep back up your esophagus which causes that nasty burning feeling.
Also, your digestion process is slower during pregnancy and the more your baby grows the more he or she will crowd your insides forcing the contents/acids in your stomach back into the esophagus which again cause heartburn.
Unfortunately, heartburn is just a part of pregnancy which means you either have to learn how to deal with it (find solutions) or try to ignore it… this second option does not work so I would suggest figuring out what you can do to make yourself feel better.
5 Tips on How to Provide Pregnancy Related Heartburn Relief:
1. Peppermint Tums
2. Essential Oils
3. When, and How to Eat Your Food
4. Foods to avoid
5. Foods You can Actually Eat
1. Peppermint Tums
You might be thinking “Oh right Tums the cure-all for tummy and heartburn relief, great tip! Not” But I am being completely honest right now when I say that not all Tums are created equal.
I know the first thing you think of when you see Tums is that nasty chalky taste that is left in your mouth when you are done eating them, you will still get that chalk taste, but different flavored Tums/antacids work for different people.
I went through the first half of my pregnancy using fruity flavored tums and they sort-of kind-of worked but I started hating the taste and they weren’t working enough for me to try them again once the bottle ran out. We went to the store to find something else and my husband actually found these awesome peppermint flavored Tums. Peppermint flavor/smell has helped me get through different parts of my pregnancy so I was really excited to try these out.
Maybe you like the fruity flavored Tums and those work for you, great! Keep it up. But if they don’t try the peppermint flavor, it’s like a mint that will actually go to work helping you feel better once it is eaten.
What is Your Favorite Antacid Flavor?
2. Essential Oils
Certain essential oils and combinations of essential oils can really help to relieve heartburn.
Peppermint, like I mentioned earlier can help with heartburn relief and the smell of it can actually help with morning sickness as well. I love peppermint!
DigestZen is a combination of oils created by doTERRE that helps you to digest food and I have found it is great for relieving heartburn.
Breathe is another doTERRE oil combination that helps when your chest feels tight and constricted and you can’t breathe as well, these are some of the symptoms of heartburn so I have found that it is a great heartburn reliever.
If you want to be able to sleep at night without heartburn keeping you up, I suggest using the three oils listed above. I simply put a drop or two of each oil with a bit of lotion and rub the combination all over my chest and my rib cage.
When to eat
3. When, and How to Eat your Food
It might sound silly that you have to be told when and how to eat your food, and this How to Avoid Heartburn Tip is actually one of the hardest for me to follow, but learning when and how to eat your food can actually help you to avoid the pain of heartburn in the first place.
When: Most people in the U.S. eat three pretty large meals during the day: breakfast, lunch, and dinner with a few snacks in between. As a pregnant woman trying to avoid heartburn, you are going to want to try and eat many more small meals throughout the day as well as eating snacks in between. If you can do this, you may not even have to worry about tips for relieving heartburn because you won’t get it in the first place.
How: Again, you are an adult and being told how to eat your food is annoying… but these tips do work so if you want to avoid heartburn all together I would suggest giving them a try. This tip of eating your food simply involves taking your time. I know when you are hungry it is easy to gobble everything up in just a few bites, but taking it slowly can help you avoid heartburn pains later on.
4 Day Meal Plan Example
Breakfast: Yogurt with Fruit
Breakfast snack: Banana
Breakfast snack: Apple
Breakfast snack: Yogurt
Breakfast snack: Muffin
Lunch: Peanut Butter & Jelly Sandwich
Lunch: Bagel Sandwich
Lunch: Tortilla with Meat and Cheese
Mid day Snack: Popsicle
Mid day Snack: Muffin
Mid day Snack: Honey Roasted Peanuts
Mid day Snack: Trail Mix
Dinner: Turkey Wraps
Dinner: Chicken 'n' Rice
Dinner: Taco Soup
2nd Dinner/Snack: Popcorn
2nd Dinner/Snack: Salad
2nd Dinner/Snack: Sweet Potatoes
2nd Dinner/Snack: Veggies 'n' Ranch
Food to Avoid
4. Foods to Avoid
I hate being told what I can and cannot eat, and I am not very good at sticking to what I know to be healthier for me, but going over the foods to avoid in order to get rid of heartburn may be the key in helping you with your heartburn so I am going to do it anyway. Here is a list of the types/kinds of foods you should avoid if you want heartburn to stay away:
- Spicy Food
- Fatty Food
- Red Meat
- Fried Foods (Yes, this includes French fries)
- Citrus Fruit
Foods to Eat
5. Foods you can actually eat
Now that I have made you sad, going over the foods you cannot or should not eat, let’s go over the types/kinds of foods you can eat.
- Salad (Don’t include a lot of dressing or tomatoes)
- Chicken (Boiled, Baked, Grilled but never fried)
- Brown Rice
- Sweet Potatoes
- Green Beans
- Celery (pretty much all green vegetables)
The best advice I can give to anyone suffering in their third trimester of pregnancy is to experiment. Honestly, what works for one person might not work for another. What worked for me might not work for you. I know, the last thing you want to do when you are hurting and in a ton of pain is try a million different things and try to track what makes you feel better - but a lot of times it is the only way.
Try different things, see what works for you, then pass the word on to your fellow pregnant ladies!
Avoid Heartburn in Pregnancy Tips
© 2014 Maddi