My all-day queasiness seems to be improving, which has me feeling both relieved and freaked out. (Because while I'm a reverse hypochondriac under normal circumstances, pregnancy has me watching every little twinge and symptom and assuming the worst. I am preganoid.)
I discovered pretty quickly that the thing that made my nausea disappear (for a few moments, at least) was eating. Which is tough to do when the very idea of food makes you gag. The secret to jumping that hurdle turned out to be having someone else, usually Rob, bring the food to me so that I wouldn't have to set foot in the newly uber-pungent kitchen.
I also discovered that even though the only thing I really wanted to eat for weeks was fruit, fruit is not a good nausea-cure. It's a great stepping stone if you feel like you can't get anything else down, but it doesn't kill the queasiness the way protein does. Chickpeas turned out to be my protein of choice. They're still the only bean that sounds even a little appealing.
Five Foods for Nausea
1. Chickpea salad wrap, wrap optional.
Cold, creamy chickpea salad, spiked with a little sweet pickle relish was the only protein that sounded even remotely appealing at first. Rolling it up with lettuce and tomato in a gluten-free wrap (Trader Joe's brown rice wraps are pretty good) made it portable, but straight-up out of the mixing bowl was the easiest to stomach. I don't have a recipe for this one: just mash up some chickpeas in a bowl with a blob of vegan mayo and a smaller blob of relish.
2. Chickpea curry with quinoa.
I was completely astounded when chickpea curry appealed to me, but it did. And, hallelujah, we had the ingredients in the house already! Rob whipped this up by sauteing mustard seeds, a diced onion and some pressed garlic in about 1 Tbsp canola oil. One 14.5 oz can each of chickpeas and diced tomatoes made up the bulk of it, and curry powder, turmeric, cumin, coriander, and salt made it taste curry-esque. We served it over quinoa, and I ate the leftovers with kale and spinach stirred in for good measure.
3. Potato-spinach squares.
Rob's mom has made the potato-spinach squares from Vegan Brunch several times, substituting cooked quinoa for the breadcrumbs. (Gluten-free and more nutrients? Yes!) I was so glad to see this dish on the Christmas Eve buffet, because it's total comfort food and easy on the tummy. I don't own Vegan Brunch, but I might have to buy it for this recipe alone.
Oh, and if you don't have an awesome mother-in-law to make potato squares for you and you're desperate for tummy-friendly comfort food, a plain baked potato will work, too.
4. Baba ghanoush.
This one surprised me. I was awash in a sea of nausea before visiting my parents' house on Christmas Day, but the baba ghanoush pulled me out. I scooped it up with tortilla chips and cucumber slices and called it lunch. The only problem was that I forgot to ask my mom for the recipe.
5. 100% Cranberry juice.
Juice is not food, per se, and it's certainly not high in protein. But in the evenings, which is when my "morning" sickness peaks, the tartness answers my queasy belly's cries of, "I'm miserable!" Plus, it looks pretty in a wine glass.
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And Five Foods that Make it Worse
Unfortunately, in my quest to end queasiness, I've also found that some of the things I gravitate towards actually make the sickness worse. Bad times.
I haven't found a good gluten-free, vegan saltine stand-in, but it doesn't matter. All of the cracker-like things I've thought would be soothing have been a bust. And they make me crave more cracker-like things.
2. Dry cereal.
Namely, Gorilla Munch. It's tasty stuff, especially if you liked Kix as a kid, and it seemed like a good idea at the time: tasty, dry, bland. But it's basically corn and sugar. And sugar seems to make my yucky belly even yuckier.
3. Fruit smoothies.
This seemed like such a good idea at the time! If fruit sounds good, a big glass of blended fruit should also go down easy, right? Not so much. I don't add any sweeteners to my smoothies, but I think this hit me the same way sugar does.
4. Ice cream.
I am not an ice cream person. I don't like it, I don't want it, get it away from me. But there is one exception: Luna & Larry's Coconut Bliss. Ohmigod, so good. Except...not so much.
I feel slightly betrayed by this one. Almonds are full of protein and healthy fats, they're a good source of magnesium, vitamin E, and manganese, and they're portable! Almonds struck me as the perfect food for toting around and munching on to keep the queasies away, but whenever I snack on them, I feel awful afterwards. They're one of my go-to "emergency snacks" when I'm not pregnant, so I'm sad to see them go. Maybe almonds and my stomach can make up in a few weeks.