What causes heartburn during pregnancy?
Heartburn and indigestion are most common during the third trimester of pregnancy as the growing uterus increases the pressure on the stomach and intestines. The growing uterus crowds the stomach, which pushes the contents back up into the esophagus. Here are five ways you can prevent heartburn during your pregnancy:
Eat small and frequent meals
Eating too much at once can exacerbate heartburn. During pregnancy, there is less space for your stomach to expand. Eating smaller meals will stave off heartburn throughout your pregnancy.
So, instead of three or four meals per day, aim for eating six meals per day. It is easier for your body to digest smaller meals and thus prevent heartburn.
Recognise and eliminate trigger foods
Identify the foods that trigger your heartburn. Though there is no one list of foods that cause heartburn. But some trigger foods include tomatoes, greasy, fried and spicy foods. For some, the list might also include coffee, chocolate and alcohol.
Have more fluids
Liquids are less likely to cause problems as compared to solid foods. This is because liquids move quickly through the stomach. Have more soups, smoothies, milkshakes, protein shakes and yoghurt.
Chew your solid foods slowly and extremely well. Do not drink a large amount of liquid in between your meals, because drinking while eating can make you swallow more air. Take small sips if you feel thirsty in between your meals.
Sit or stand after a meal
Do not immediately lie down after eating a meal. Take a leisurely walk. Maybe you can do a little housework or just sit down and read a book. Also, do not do anything that requires you to bend over. Bending and lying down can bring the acid back up into your esophagus.
Do not eat right before bed
Having a feast right before going to bed is the perfect recipe for heartburn. Experts recommend eating at least three hours before going to bed. If you feel hungry after having your dinner, have something liquid.
Disclaimer: The views expressed in this article should not be considered as a substitute for a physician’s advice. Please consult your treating physician for more details.