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Vitamin B6 for Morning Sickness

Take your vitamins

Vitamin B 6 is one of eight B vitamins. All eight play an important role in helping the human body to convert food, especially fats and proteins, into energy. They are also necessary for healthy skin, hair, and eyes, and are critical for the proper functioning of the liver and the nervous system. The body also needs vitamin B6 to make hemoglobin, a molecule in red blood cells that carries oxygen to the body’s cells.

B6 has also been used since the 1940s to prevent morning sickness. Many women find that taking extra B6 during the early months of pregnancy greatly reduces the nausea of morning sickness. Several studies have found B6 to be an effective treatment for morning sickness. However, it is very hard for researchers to determine whether B6 is helpful for treating morning sickness, since almost all morning sickness goes away on its own if it is given time, and researchers cannot always tell whether the morning sickness is reduced because of B6 or because it was already going away on its own. Still, the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology announced in 2004 that it considers B6 to be highly effective and the first line of defense against morning sickness. The ACOG combines B6 with an antihistamine, but many women have found that B6 alone was very helpful.

Using Vitamin B6 to Prevent Morning Sickness

Method

  • Take a daily dose of vitamin B6. Some studies recommend a supplemental dose of 30 mg per day. Others suggest a range of 10-25 mg. The American Pregnancy Association recommends 50 mg. Check with your doctor or midwife to find out how much B6 is right for you.
  • Alternatively, switch to a prenatal vitamin that includes a supplemental dose of B6.
  • Alternatively, eat foods that are rich in vitamin B6, such as whole grains, fish, meat, bananas, beans, peanut butter, soy, seeds, peas, potatoes, squash, green leafy vegetables, asparagus, avocado, okra, seaweed, figs, raisins, watermelon, elderberries, or juice made from tomatoes, oranges, or prunes.

Why It Works

No one is certain why vitamin B6 prevents morning sickness.

Precautions

Be careful not to overdose on vitamin B6. Add up the amounts of B6 that are in your B6 supplement and in your prenatal vitamins, and make sure that the total is no more than 100 mg per day. Check with your midwife or ob/gyn to find out what amount of B6 is appropriate for you personally. Bear in mind that pregnant women only need 1.9 mg of B6 per day in order to meet their own needs and those of their developing babies. If you overdose on B6, you could develop numbness or nerve damage, or even become paralyzed, and the baby could develop birth defects.

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This information is solely for informational and educational purposes only. The publication of this information does not constitute the practice of medicine, and this information does not replace the advice of your physician or other health care provider. Neither the owners or employees of GrannyMed.com or the author(s) of site content take responsibility for any possible consequences from any treatment, procedure, exercise, dietary modification, action or application of medication which results from reading this site. Be aware that many of the techniques and remedies published on this site have not been evaluated in scientific studies. Often, only limited information is available about their safety and effectiveness. Use of these remedies in connection with other medications can cause severe adverse reactions. It is always best to speak with your primary health care provider before engaging in any form of self treatment. Additional information contained in our Legal Statement

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