As your baby grows, the uterus will start to put more pressure on the organs in your abdomen, and this can lead to a great deal of discomfort. The pressure on your bladder will have you running for the bathroom regularly, while the baby pressing against your stomach can make it hard to eat.
Although that pressure might make it feel like there is just no room for food, you do still need to eat. Your body needs extra calories during pregnancy, not less, so skipping meals is never a good idea. When the pressure is at its worst, the last thing you want to do is to attempt to put food in your stomach, but for your health and your baby’s growth, you will have to find a way. Although there is no way to completely stop the feeling of pressure, there are ways to prevent eating from making it worse.
Split Up Your Meals
Instead of eating 3 meals a day, split them into 6 or even more. Eating much smaller portions will make it easier to get the food down, and your body will have time to digest before you attempt to eat more. Make sure that you are still getting all the required servings of each of the food groups, just split those portions into smaller ones.
Eating smaller meals will not only keep your stomach from feeling too stuffed, it will also help you to maintain steady levels of energy throughout the day. In fact, many dieticians recommend this method even when there isn’t a baby sitting on your stomach.
Balance What is on Your Plate
Make sure that you aren’t eating meals that are too heavy on the really filling foods like high-fiber choices. You do need that fiber, but you should break it up throughout the day. Breakfast is often a high-fiber meal, so try to take some of those foods out of your breakfast meal and move them to other parts of the day. Or, make breakfast two separate meals.
Choose Your Timing Wisely
You might feel a lot more pressure at certain times of the day. If you work a desk job, sitting for long periods can make the abdomen feel cramped. In the morning the pressure might be lessened since you have been lying down and the baby may have shifted away from the stomach. Take advantage of times when the pressure isn’t so bad to fit in a good meal. If you are feeling like you don’t want to eat, but know you should, try taking a short walk to see if it helps the pressure, If not, choose something that won’t be too heavy in your stomach. A smoothie is a great choice for nutrition that won’t leave you feeling super full. If you really can’t eat, at least have something nutritious to drink, such as milk or fruit juice to keep you going.
Towards the end of the pregnancy, when the baby is really taking up all of the available space in your abdomen, eating may become an even greater challenge. The good news is you are nearing the end. Soon you will have your abdomen back, albeit a little changed. After all the challenges of eating during pregnancy, from the nausea early on to the incredible pressure of a baby on your stomach, you can look forward to enjoying a meal again very soon!