This post contains affiliate links please see bottom of page for disclosure.
ManagingHyperemesis Gravidarum! Answers!
Hyperemesis Gravidarum is more severe than average pregnancy nausea: it is basically hell in gestation but there are answers to surviving it and preventing it from happening again. I recommend trying the ideas in my blog post Nausea in Pregnancy. Since each of the ideas mentioned in this blog may help, but for some people more drastic measures are needed. One of the most effective treatments for surviving HG is vitamin B-12 shots, which a local midwife or your doctor may be able to order and administer for you. If even this does not work, doing intravenous B vitamins and magnesium is a very powerful way to address HG. I personally would pursue these answers before taking a pharmaceutical. I know of several natural doctors who prescribe vitamin IV's.
Pregnancy is an important time to provide your body with high quality nutrients, including fermented cod liver oil and butter oil, good vitamin and mineral supplements, B vitamin supplements, high-quality magnesium, and a natural iron supplement (that does not cause nausea or constipation). All of these will help with managing nausea of pregnancy when taken from a whole food, not-synthetic source. Synthetic vitamins can make the nausea worse.
Begin with Diet
Always begin addressing H-pylori with diet. Because H. pylori bacteria love sugar, it is essential to eliminate sugar from your diet as much as possible. Some sources believe an exception may be raw honey. In fact, there is some empirical knowledge that Manuka Honey, which comes from New Zealand, has the ability to kill H-pylori. Others argue that honey is simply sugar and will feed the H. Pylori. I tend to think a little raw honey will not hurt, J especially if you eliminate other sweeteners, including artificial and replacement sweeteners; most of these are not good in pregnancy anyway. Choose to eat complex carbohydrates like green vegetables, beans, lentils, and peas. Add fermented and sprouted foods to your diet.
Women who eat fermented foods during pregnancy seem to be less sick with HG. This may be because the good bacteria help to balance out the internal ecosystem. Taking a good probiotic may help in the same way. Fermented foods have lots of B vitamins in them: women with H. pylori may be depleted in B vitamins. So eat your kefir and sauerkraut and learn how to ferment your own foods. It can be lots of fun. To learn more about fermenting foods checkout this course by Body Ecology Fermentation Course
Eradicating H. pylori
Addressing H. pylori in pregnancy is more tricky than treating it before pregnancy because you are limited on your treatment options.
Most doctors recommend strong antibiotics for H. pylori, but it is questionable how safe these are in pregnancy. I don’t recommend antibiotics in pregnancy if there are other effective treatments because they wreak havoc with the gut. See my blog post on Gut Health Preconception.
There are several natural ways to eradicate H-pylori, but most of them are questionable in pregnancy. There are also many home remedies which are questionable as to if they really work. Here are a few that I found treatments that are suppose to be safe in pregnancy and really work.
Colloidal Silver is a natural antibacterial substance. I have not found many studies done on if colloidal silver is safe or not in pregnancy though there is lots of anecdotal evidence for it being safe. The dose I have seen recommended is 1 teaspoon three times a day on an empty stomach. Make sure to do your own research before taking colloidal silver during pregnancy or otherwise as it does have some side effects. I did enjoy reading this blog mom’s experience with colloidal silver, HG, and H. pylori: The Cause and Cure of Morning Sickness and Hyperemesis Gravidarum. You can use my link to buy Colloidal Silver here: Sovereign Silver
DGL (deglycyrrhized licorice) is a standardized licorice supplement that has removed glycyrrihizin. Regular licorice is not considered safe in pregnancy due to the effect of glycyrrhizin. Side effects may include increased blood pressure, reduced potassium levels, and edema. DGL is considered safe in pregnancy by many natural health providers, but again has not been studied in pregnancy. One suggested dosage is 750-1,500 mg/day for 8-16 weeks which has shown to reduce inflammation and ulcers. Again they recommend DGL be taken on an empty stomach. I like this brand: Designs for Health DGL
Vitamin C has been shown to inhibit the growth of H. pylori. One study showed high doses of 5000mg a day of vitamin C treatment for 4 weeks eradicated it in 30% of those treated. It is not recommended to take high does off synthetic vitamin C in pregnancy. Actually I don’t recommend taking synthetic vitamin C except for short periods of time ever. Taking whole food sourced vitamin C is a different story. In pregnancy I recommend 2000 mg a day of a whole food C. Taking vitamin C, even if it does not eradicate it, is worthwhile because it can still reduce the level of H. pylori and is beneficial in healing the gut.
Lactoferrin is a component of the immune system found in colostrum, breast milk, and cow milk. It is antimicrobial and has antibacterial activity against H. pylori. One study showed bovine (cow) lactoferrin is effective to suppress H. pylori colonization though not eradicating it. The dosage used in the study was 200mg twice a day for twelve weeks. I like this brand which is colostrum with lactoferrin and the dosage is 400mg per capsule: Nurticology Lacotoferrin
Sulforaphane is an anti-cancer compound in cruciferous vegetables. Studies have shown it to inhibit H. pylori, even antibiotic-resistant strains. It has potent antioxidant and possible anti-inflammatory actions. One of the best ways to get sulforaphane is through broccoli sprouts. It can also be taken in capsule form. There is not a set dosage for sulforaphane, but one suggested dosage was by body weight per day. It has no contraindication in pregnancy. 7-34 mg for a 150lb person
9-45 mg for a 200lb person
11-57 mg for a 250lb person
As you can see their are several answers for addressing Hyperemesis Gravidarum in pregnancy and treating H. Pylori. Please do not give up hope. If you need some more encouragement I would be glad to walk you through some of these suggestions. If you would like to test for H-pylori I offer a comprehensive stool test. Learn More Here H-Pylori Profile and Consultation
Jarosz M. 1998. Effects of high dose vitamin C treatment on Helicobacter pylori infection and total vitamin C concentration in gastric juice. Eur J Cancer Prev 7:449-454.
Imoto, I et al. Suppressive Effect of Bovine Lactoferrin against Helicobacter pylori. Helicobacter 2004 (A11.27); 9: 487-604.
Picture are copyright by creative commons for free use with out attribution unless otherwise noted