How To Improve Food Digestion While Pregnant

By Subodh / January 9, 2015

Constipation, gas, heartburn and bloating are common problems experienced during pregnancy. This is due to wacky fluctuations in hormones as well as the fact that little life inside you takes up the space thus slowing the digestion process. Here’s a guide for future mommies about the common digestion problems and tips to combat them to ease your pregnancy.

Pregnancy Digestion Problems, Causes & Resolving Tips

Heartburn

This is the most common problem faced by pregnant ladies, generally during the second and third phase. The chief causes of this problem include hormone changes and over relaxed digestive tract. The problem worsens with due date coming closer due to rapid growth of baby thus leading to crowding of the digestive tract and making food items rise upwards.

food while pregnant

Tips to Combat

  • Eat smaller and frequent portions instead of three fixed meals. This would prevent the stomach getting extra-filled thus preventing acid-reflux and providing better digestion.
  • Avoid taking acidic foods like mustards/vinegars, citrus juices and fruits, and similar more.
  • Make it light before taking a nap or bedtime. Allow the digestive system to have sufficient time for food digestion before you get into the bed.
  • Avoid over-eating and prefer eating slow to get ample time for digestion.
  • Cut on spices, seasonings, and deep fried food items.
  • Cut down on tea, coffee, chocolates, sodas and aerated drinks.

If the problem still exists after the above tips, it is better to ask your doc for appropriate medication.

Bloating, Gas and Distension

Delayed digestion is a common problem during pregnancy. This delayed digestion might lead to related problems, gas being the most common one. This gas further leads to bloating and excessive gas for pregnant ladies. Well, here are some simple tips to make would be mommies more comfortable and eased out.

Tips to Combat

  • Stress on smaller and more frequent meals.
  • Stay active with intervallic body movements to make the digestion process better.
  • Avoid foods that produce gas, even though these are healthy, including lentils, onions, beans, raw cabbage, broccoli, and similar more. It is advisable to take the gas-producing foods in their raw form, if possible, rather than cooking them.
  • Steer clear of carbonated beverages.
  • Recoil from chewing gum. Sugar-free candies and chewing gums usually are full of sugar-alcohols like maltitol, xylitol, and sorbitol. These ingredients are responsible for producing gas in the stomach.
  • Cut down on foods containing insulin for this food component is a natural fibre produced by chicory root known for producing excess gas.
  • Reduce consumption of dairy products. Excessive intake of dairy products like milk, cheese and yogurt and replace these with food items like almond milk or soy milk.
  • Prefer a pro-biotic supplement for these are healthy bacteria that occur naturally. Bloating and gas might occur due to excessive growth of ‘bad’ bacteria. It is better to ask your doc for a recommended pro-biotic supplement to retain a healthy bacteria balance in the digestive system to get relief from gas and bloating.

Constipation

Constipation implies sporadic bowel movements that make it difficult to pass stools. This is again a problem occurring more because of hormonal imbalance during pregnancy. Anxiety, inactivity and a diet with lower fibre content might worsen the problem. Many times, the iron supplements recommended during pregnancy might be a possible cause of the problem or worsen it if already existing.

Tips to Combat

  • Increase the amount of liquid, specifically water, in your daily routine. This would ease the food movement along the digestive system, thus quickening the process.
  • Include high fibre food items in your dietary regime. These include food items like fruits and vegetables, oats, bran cereals, and barley. Steer clear of starchy foods as well.
  • Prefer prune juice or prunes for the high fibre content contained in them. Moreover, these are natural laxatives to relieve constipation.
  • Ensure ample time for bathroom daily. Might sound silly, but it is helpful if you develop a routine that provides you sufficient relaxing time for washroom.

If the problem still persists in spite of following the aforesaid tips and remedies, it is better to ask your gynaecologist about safe medication for the problem.

These are some tips to improve your food digestion while you are pregnant. Use these tips and enjoy a healthy and happy pregnancy.