1) Eat smaller meals and snacks rather than larger meals: In those susceptible to nausea, consuming very large infrequent meals may aggravate the issue. If you know yourself to be susceptible to nausea and/or vomiting, I highly recommend reducing your meal sizes and incorporating snacks rather than delaying eating for long periods of time and eating larger meals. This is important because having an empty stomach for an extended period of time may contribute to nausea
2) Minimize heavily fried or fatty foods: This is generally good advice for anyone, but is especially true for those trying to minimize their risk of experiencing nausea. French fries, hamburgers, hot dogs, fried chicken and the list goes on and on. These foods put a heavy load on the digestive system that may be hard to handle if you are new to the pill or particularly vulnerable to nausea and related digestive symptoms.
3) Drink your water, but drink it in between meals: If you are someone who is guilty of not drinking enough water throughout the day, make an effort to drink more. It may also be important for you to drink before and after meals, rather than during. Aim for up to 9 cups a day, spread throughout the day. Some people may also benefit from limiting alcohol, caffeine and carbonated drinks, depending on their own individual sensitivities.
4) Don’t lie down after eating: Allow yourself a reasonable digestion period of at least 30-60 minutes after eating before lying down; this includes both meals and bed time snacks. Spend some time cleaning up or doing something seated up right or standing before you kick your legs up after dinner.
5) Try cold foods more often: Warm foods, although delicious, generally have a stronger odour. If you find yourself particularly sensitive to nausea on any particular day, it will help for you to avoid strong food odours, regardless of how pleasant they may be.
Andy De Santis RD MPH