I suffered dreadfully with heartburn in late pregnancy, as do 75% of all pregnant women. Heartburn is very common in the third trimester of pregnancy but what causes it and what can you do to lessen the effects of it?
I think that this article has a brilliant summary of the medical reasons why pregnant women suffer heartburn. So it really is an old wives tale that it is cause by the baby’s hair growing! http://heartburn.about.com/od/preventingheartburn/a/pregnancyhrtbrn.htm
Increased hormones that soften the ligaments surrounding the stomach, organs being pushed into your stomach as the baby grows, as well as just the effect of having to make room for your growing baby, all contribute to pushing stomach acid back up into your throat.
Avoiding foods and drinks that increase acidity is a good starting point – things like citrus foods, tomatoes, spicy foods, coffee, chocolate (oh no, really?). I have attached this helpful chart listing foods that are bad triggers.
Peppermint is a herb generally to be avoided in pregnancy but especially so when trying to get rid of heartburn. Strangely enough, spearmint is not only 100% safe to drink in pregnancy, as it is from a different mint family, but it is very good for relieving heartburn. This is why I made it the basis of my Cool Mama Pregnancy Heartburn Herbal Tea.
It contains spearmint leaf, marshmallow leaf and chamomile, all good for heartburn and safe for any time during pregnancy.
I even made it taste good too!
All the best to those of you battling with the dreaded pregnancy heartburn. Thinking of you.