I’ve suffered terribly with pregnancy sickness over the past few weeks and one of the hardest things was continuing to parent when all I wanted and needed was to rest. Meal times were the worst, Harry still needed to eat a varied, healthy diet, even if I was living on water and cereal.
So I thought I’d share with you my top tips for feeding your family while you are suffering with pregnancy sickness.
Top tips for cooking with pregnancy aversions:
Serve cold food where possible
Smells had a really strong impact on me when I was at my worst. Hot foods tend to have a stronger smell so serving cold food eliminates this problem (or at least reduces it). For lunch time I gave sandwiches, cheese and crackers, filled pitta pockets and invested in cooked meats from the deli counter to avoid having to cook them myself.
No one gets a medal for preparing everything from scratch. If it’s healthy and tasty then where’s the problem in taking a few shortcuts?
Here are a few of my favourite shortcuts:
- Frozen vegetables instead of chopping and preparing fresh.
- Frozen mashed potato only takes minutes to reheat in the microwave.
- Buy cooked meat from the deli counter.
- Buy pre prepared packets of steamed vegetables and premade salad bowls.
- Buy ready meals. There are lots of healthy options for children available these days, if you really can’t face cooking don’t be afraid to use them, it’s why they’re there! I’ve heard the Annabel Karmel ready meals are very good.
- Buy packet snacks like the delicious snacks that Organix make. It’s so much easier to hand your child a packet than it is to prepare a snack from scratch and there are plenty of healthy options out there.
Get your other half to batch cook and portion off some for the little ones to eat the next day. If you don’t have an other half then accept help from friends or relatives, it’s amazing how much people are willing to help you when you just ask. Reheating something in the microwave is much easier to cope with when you feel rubbish than cooking from scratch.
Use your slow cooker
My nausea was 24 hours a day at it’s worst. It was unrelenting. There were times though where I felt slightly more able to cope than others. During these times I was able to throw a few raw ingredients into a slow cooker and leave it to work it’s magic. I would shut the kitchen door to lock in the smell and then only have to face it when I served the meal later for Harry.
Be kind to yourself
We can’t all be Supermum all of the time. We can only do our best, sometimes that will be amazing, others it will be just treading water. Harry has had some really random meals recently. Meals I never thought I’d give him, but I fed him, and that’s the main thing! He didn’t care if his dinner had taken me hours to prepare or if I’d just thrown some bits of food on a plate, he had a full tummy and that was what mattered. On the days I felt a bit better I made the effort, on days when I didn’t I got by. And that is ok.
If you are suffering from pregnancy nausea and sickness then I send the biggest hugs and support to you. It can be completely unbearable but will be so worth it when you hold your healthy baby in your arms. Please also don’t be afraid to speak to your doctor. I thought I would get laughed out of the surgery when I went in with ‘morning sickness’ but they were really supportive and eventually managed to prescribe something that helps. Please be kind to yourself and remember – you’re doing great!