Eating in the 1st Trimester

by tinysneakers

If I were one of my own prenatal nutrition clients, I’d have scolded myself on a daily basis. The truth is, eating through morning sickness is more a matter of survival than anything else.

At least in my experience, the biggest problem was not having an appetite for anything. That didn’t mean I didn’t get hungry- just that nothing sounded the least bit appealing. Brainstorming meals, writing grocery lists and thinking of what to make for dinner were suddenly arduous and painful tasks. Just thinking of food made my stomach turn for the umpteen hundredth time.

Ironically, one of the few things that helped keep the nausea at bay was food. While I didn’t want to think about it, smell it, or look at it, it did make my stomach chill out for a at least a few precious minutes. Of course this means I spent pretty much every hour of the day with some kind of food in my mouth. My bag was never without snacks, and my hand was constantly reaching in to grab another nibble. By the end of the first trimester, I had a stash ready and waiting in just about every room in the house.

My favorite go-to foods rotated throughout the weeks, but generally consisted of the following:

Saltines {clichéd and oh so true- they do help calm a rolling stomach. Although have you ever tried to eat a dry, bland cracker in the middle of the night? Yeah, not so easy. Hence my switch to the other choices.} I preferred the low sodium version- the less flavor, the better.


Chickadees-Target brand Goldfish-wannabe crackers. They’re shaped like ducks. I think that helped. Winking smile

Graham crackers. Probably my first choice.

– Cereal, especially Honey Nut Shredded Wheat. Double especially in terms of bedside table real estate.

honey nut shredded wheat

Sour Patch Kids. I wish I’d figured this one out earlier. A spur of the moment movie-stand purchase {which we never, ever succumb to} by the husband pretty much saved my life during Bridesmaids. Who knew? I was never without them again.

sour patch kidssour patch kids chewy candy

Ginger Chews by the The Ginger People. Not the hard ones, only the chewy ones.

ginger chews the ginger people

Peanut butter sandwiches. Particularly half a sandwich immediately before climbing in bed, and occasionally in the middle of the night if things were really bad.


Obviously those foods even eaten 24-7 don’t add up to much of an intake, so I filled in the gaps with whatever I could squeeze in. Mostly that meant whatever was put in front of me so I didn’t have to think about it. When no one put anything in front of me {let’s be honest, that rarely happens} it was all about double duty foods: high calorie and full of liquid.

I knew staying hydrated was important, and most liquids made me gag {and still do}, so I tried to include fluid in my food. The fact that things like juice and shakes are high calorie was ony a benefit- I had no interest in losing weight, although that’s fairly normal at the beginning of pregnancy. That usually meant V8 Fusion juice, Cinch shakes, SlimFast {the dairy didn’t go over too well}, and any fruit or vegetable I could handle. Grapes and applesauce were usually ok, as well as kale chips and lima beans. Yes, I know, weird. I probably did better about getting in a few fruits and vegetables in the first trimester than I do now since I was trying so hard to get in at least a nutrient or two.

While food overall wasn’t appealing, the only things I really truly did not want anywhere near me were coffee and hummus. So sad. Don’t worry, I’m over it. Winking smile

The most magically morning sickness cure of all? Vitamin B6 & Unisom. I use the term “cure” loosely, because there really isn’t a whole lot you can do about morning sickness except get through it, but this certainly helped, especially at night.


I’m obviously not a doctor, and I don’t play one on my blog, but feel free to ask your doctor about it if you’re struggling. The active ingredients in an old morning sickness medication are really just B6 and Unisom {tabs not caps}. It was taken off the market in the US, but is still sold in Canada, and is safe for pregnancy. For more info & dosing info, visit the Motherisk website or call their morning sickness hotline, 1-800-436-8477. {Yes, that’s a thing. I told you morning sickness was no joke.}


What morning sickness remedies do you have to add? What worked for you?

{ 10 comments… read them below or add one }

Marci September 15, 2011 at 5:59 pm

Sour Patch Kids are genius! I didn’t think of those. My queeziness wasn’t too bad, I had bread when I woke up in the morning with butter, peanut butter crackers when I would start feeling hungry or queezy, and that was about it for staples. Saltines too for sure. Otherwise, I ate pretty normal out of the house, but nothing sounded good to cook at home. PBJ sandwiches for lunch too were always good.


tinysneakers September 15, 2011 at 9:28 pm

I think it’s the super sourness. I was so scared I would get sick of PB sandwiches- thank goodness that didn’t happen!


Shayla @ The Good Life September 15, 2011 at 6:04 pm

I remember my mom telling me B6 worked wonders for her nausea too!! And that it wasn’t morning sickness…it was nausea Ha sweet, can’t wait 😉


tinysneakers September 15, 2011 at 9:33 pm

I’d say she’s absolutely correct. 😉


@officeballerina September 15, 2011 at 7:56 pm

This post was *almost* too painful for me to read as I’m just barely emerging from my own 1st trimester 🙂 At 12 weeks, the saltines and ginger ale are still too fresh in my memory! For me, even thinking about food made me feel sick. I just wanted someone to put food in front of me so I could eat – no thinking, planning, or prepping involved. I also took the unisom/B6 combo. Did it keep me from throwing up? Maybe, but I was still crippled by the nausea 24/7. In any event, I’m 12 weeks now and slowly starting to feel better 🙂

Congrats on your pregnancy – I will definitely be reading along on your journey!


tinysneakers September 15, 2011 at 9:36 pm

Ahh I feel your pain!! Nothing really makes it go away, but it did make me feel better thinking I was at least trying to make it better. 😉 I think the B6/unisom mostly just helped me get to sleep at night- it’s hard to sleep when you’re nauseous!

I hope you keep feeling better & better!


Kelly September 15, 2011 at 8:25 pm

I think I had a half of a peanut butter sandwich every night 🙂 and sour patch kids…. forget about it!!! They were great! and I think it has to do with sour. If you look at the lozenges for nausea they sell at maternity stores…they are sour so something with sour should surely work… I wish I had figured that out earlier. I actually craved them right after the babies were born!


tinysneakers September 15, 2011 at 9:39 pm

Ahh I wish you’d told me that secret at the very beginning! haha.


sarah (the SHU box) September 16, 2011 at 5:44 am

yes yes and YES. i’m so happy that my 1st tri aversions/most of the nausea ended around 10-11 weeks because it sucked! and i too was all over the sour. preggie drops (sabrina from told me about them) are even better than sour patch because they last longer + are MORE sour! they got me through many a nauseated afternoon. i’m sure my dentist will not approve but i don’t care 🙂


Jen September 16, 2011 at 11:49 am

Ugh, the first tri was awful. I remember being in the grocery store and crying because nothing looked appealing to me. I survived on bagels w/ cream cheese, saltines, salt and vinegar potato chips, sweedish fish, and flat coke. I felt so guilty eating so terribly but my Dr. promised me that baby only needed carbs in the first tri, and that I’d be feeling well enough to eat healthy in a few weeks. I didn’t believe her at the time, but I am so glad she was right!


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