Must have foods for pregnancy heartburn prevention - blog post

25 “Must-Have” Foods for Preventing Pregnancy Heartburn

Your body goes through many changes when you’re pregnant. One of the most common pregnancy problems is acidity. The good news is that there are many foods for preventing pregnancy heartburn naturally.

Often, this condition can turn severely painful if you don’t know how to manage the symptoms.

A few changes in your lifestyle — like taking care of what you eat — can cut down the risk of gas and painful esophageal inflammation. 

Interested in learning more? Awesome!

This blog lists 25 best foods to prevent pregnancy heartburn for soon-to-be mommies. Find out which foods are ideal for preggo women and the best ways to consume them.

Sick of acid reflux during pregnancy?
3 ways you can avoid pregnancy heartburn:
👉 Quit smoking🚭
👉 Begin a regular prenatal yoga🧘
👉 Start eating these 25 healthy foods🍎

#pregnancy #womenhealth #womenhh #healthtips

What is Pregnancy Heartburn?

Let’s start with the basics: what is pregnancy acidity?

Despite its name, heartburn is not a heart problem.

Heartburn is a reflux phenomenon, causing acid backflow from the stomach to the esophagus (the tube connecting the stomach and throat). 

As a result, pregnancy acidity feels like a painful irritation in your chest, right behind the breasts. When acid flows back, it causes burning in the esophageal tube.

Can you imagine? Ugh – super gross and nasty!

What Causes Heartburn During Pregnancy?

Almost 80% of women encounter heartburn at some point during their pregnancy journey. 

This condition is common in the early weeks of the first trimester and lasts until the third trimester.

A lot of factors contribute to acid reflux during pregnancy, including smoking or being overweight.

Technically, pregnancy heartburn occurs because of hormonal changes. High progesterone levels in the blood affect digestion and ultimately cause esophageal inflammation.

You may also experience this type of acidity when the womb pushes onto the stomach, causing stomach acid to flow back toward the esophagus.

Dr. Renee Wellenstein, a certified OB-GYN specialist, says that gestational acidity is not serious unless you can’t ignore the symptoms.

“If a woman develops nausea and vomiting due to the severity of the heartburn, she should promptly alert her doctor. And it is a medical emergency if she begins vomiting blood, since this may indicate a more serious condition related to heartburn.”

Dr. Renee Wellenstein

25 best foods to prevent pregnancy heartburn symptoms

25 Best Foods for Preventing Pregnancy Heartburn

Usually, your specialist might prescribe antacids that promote a soothing and cool feel.

Besides, you might need to alter your lifestyle to reduce the acid-burning sensation.

This includes changing the frequency and times of your meals. You may have to ditch spicy stuff and incorporate more “clean and natural” foods. 

Don’t know where to start? No worries!

Begin with these 25 must-have foods to prevent pregnancy heartburn. Plus, I’ve included tips on how to consume each food safely.

1. Skimmed milk

Without a doubt, milk is an essential source of calcium for you and your little angel. 

However, full-fat milk often triggers acid reflux during pregnancy. Be on the safe side and go for skimmed milk.  

Best way to consume:

Drink a glass of milk with a teaspoon of honey after dinner to ease inflammation.

2. Yogurt

Yogurt offers a cooling sensation, essential for relieving pregnancy heartburn. Additionally, the probiotics in yogurt help with better digestion and smooth bowel movements.

Best way to consume:

You can have greek yogurt in desserts or make a delicious smoothie using fruits or veggies.

3. Ginger

This edible root has a zesty and hot taste. Despite its strong flavor, ginger is beneficial for digestion and combat gut inflammation. 

Pregnant women with heartburn use this spice for relieving nausea, acid reflux, and upset stomach. 

Best way to consume:

As you can guess, a cup of ginger green tea is the best remedy for pregnancy heartburn.

You can also chew ginger candies or try ginger ale to reduce symptoms of pregnancy acidity.

Ginger is safe to eat for gestational acidity
Image credit: @meguminachev

4. Banana

Bananas contain many nutrients, namely potassium, fiber, and vitamins B and C. 

This is why experts recommend this fruit as a regular snack. Pregnant women should eat bananas daily for instant energy and nutrition boost.

Bananas also have low acid content that helps with acid reflux during pregnancy.

Best way to consume:

You could cut up a few pieces of bananas and mix them in a fruit salad or low-fat ice cream. 

Either way, it’ll be a super delicious and strengthening snack!

5. Asparagus

Rich in vitamins, antioxidants, calcium, fiber, iron, and zinc, asparagus is a top-recommended nutritious plant for soon-to-be mommies. 

This veggie is an excellent choice for proper baby growth and managing high blood sugar.

Asparagus is highly alkaline, making it an essential food for women with pregnancy heartburn symptoms.

Best way to consume:

Asparagus is a popular vegetable and is cooked in various forms. You can eat roasted asparagus as a side salad or even consume it raw.

6. Honey

Honey is yet another ideal food that helps with pregnancy heartburn in pregnant women. Particularly, raw honey contains a variety of essential anti-inflammatory compounds.

If you are tired of eating antacids every other day, simply include a spoonful of honey in your daily routine. 

Honey also combats viral infections and boosts immunity to keep you and your baby safe. 

Best way to consume:

You can start by replacing sugar with honey in teas, salad dressings, or even desserts. 

To treat nighttime pregnancy heartburn, a teaspoon of honey in chamomile tea is the perfect home remedy.

25 “Must-Have” Foods for Preventing Pregnancy Heartburn 1

7. Berries

Need a burst of nutrition + deliciousness?

You can never go wrong with strawberries, blackberries, raspberries or blueberries!

The berry family contains no acidic content and has remarkable antioxidant levels. Hence, they guarantee superb digestion and benefits, making them a must-have food for preventing pregnancy heartburn.

Best way to consume:

You can eat berries along with breakfast cereal or mix a few with low-fat ice cream to make a delicious dessert.

8. Carrots

This fiber-filled veggie aids with better digestion and particularly avoids constipation. 

Carrots also contain low fat and lots of sugar which is an ideal non-inflammatory option to manage pregnancy heartburn symptoms.

Best way to consume:

Eat raw carrots separately or in the form of salad and make them your pregnancy BFF!

9. Turnips

Turnips belong to the edible-roots family. If you’re looking for rich in iron- and folate-rich veggies, you should add turnips to your list.
 
In addition, turnips contain nutrients to combat cancer, boost immunity, and enhance your bone health.

The alkaline nature and high fiber also reduce colon inflammation. So add turnip to your list of important foods for preventing pregnancy heartburn.

Best way to consume:

You can make a warm delicious soup with turnips or roast some potatoes and turnips together.

Turnips are safe to eat for pregnancy heartburn
Image credit: @gardenwindows

10. Tomatoes

Tomatoes have immense nutritional benefits, particularly for weight loss. 

This fruit contains a high amount of folic acid and vitamins A and C, necessary for a healthy pregnancy journey. 

But there’s a downside. 

Mommies-to-be who are prone to esophagus inflammation may experience heartburn IF they eat raw tomatoes in bulk.

Best way to consume:

A safe recipe for pregnant women with heartburn is tomato slices tucked in a turkey sandwich. The meat and bread combination minimizes the risk of acid reflux.

Gestational acidity is another painful perk of being a mommy-to-be. 👶🤷

But there IS a way to beat it!

Say goodbye to gut inflammation with these 25 must-have foods for pregnancy heartburn. 🤰

#healthtips #pregnancy #acidity #nutrition #womenhealth #womenhh

11. Potatoes

Who doesn’t love potatoes!

To everyone’s delight, spuds are yet another superb food for preventing pregnancy heartburn risk. 

Potatoes are rich in vitamin C and if eaten in small amounts, help to combat iron deficiency.

Additionally, these edible roots benefit pregnant women with heartburn, thanks to their high fiber content. 

Best way to consume:

One of the most popular — and top favorite — potato recipe is baked potatoes, sprinkled with a bit of salt, pepper, olive oil, and parsley. 

Avoid mashed potatoes as they are known to trigger heartburn.

12. Kale

Kale is a cruciferous burst of nutrition, containing high amounts of necessary nutrients. 

Besides improving your heart health and helping with type 2 diabetes, kale mitigates acid in the stomach. 

In short, this is a must-have food for preventing pregnancy heartburn risk.  

Best way to consume:

Most women find heartburn relief during pregnancy by eating raw kale. If not, you can toss it in your salad and mix it with your favorite dressing!

13. Beans

Most legumes such as kidney beans, soybeans, black beans, and white beans have high fiber and protein content. Fiber promotes healthy digestion and prevents constipation during pregnancy.

Thus, they are a good replacement for meat, if you’re looking for light food for preventing pregnancy heartburn symptoms.

Best way to consume:

Boil or fry them in little olive oil along with a pinch of salt and pepper. Make sure you don’t overload on beans as it can cause gas. 

14. Apples

Apples are best known for their alkaline nature that minimizes the risk of acid reflux. 

Eating this fiber-filled fruit daily can help reduce inflammation, cleanse your tummy and aid with digestion.

The potassium and calcium content in apples is also very beneficial for soon-to-be mommies. They are also a good source of iron, necessary for reducing anemia risk.

Best way to consume:

The most popular home remedy for pregnancy heartburn relief is a teaspoon of apple cider vinegar mixed in a cup of water.

15. Melons

Various types of melon-category fruits, including muskmelon, watermelon, and cantaloupe are perfect superfoods to manage gestational heartburn symptoms. 

Their low acidic content is helpful in reducing esophagus inflammation.

Almost 90% of the content in melon is water and fruit sugars, which works wonders for dehydration. 

Best way to consume:

Eat a melon mix salad every week to prevent pregnancy heartburn symptoms.

25 Best foods to avoid pregnancy heartburn

16. Spinach

In all honesty, women show mixed reactions from spinach when it comes to pregnancy acid reflux relief.

This leafy green veggie is full of vitamins and nutritious compounds needed for the proper development of the fetus. Spinach also reduces the risk of cancer. 

While for some, eating spinach leads to bloating, others mention that it helps with inflammation, digestion, and smooth bowel movements. 

Experts advise that spinach must be eaten in moderation and avoid overloading on it. 

Best way to consume:

Try a spinach salad with ranch dressing or drink up a nutritious spinach smoothie!

17. Egg whites

Yes, egg whites — sans the yolk.

Soft egg yolks are home to bacteria and not safe to eat for pregs women. Additionally, they are more likely to trigger heartburn symptoms.

Egg whites are a rich source of protein, essential vitamins A, D, E, K, and improve brain development. Thus, a necessary staple food for pregnant women!

Best way to consume:

You can eat egg whites however you want but make sure they are well-cooked. Otherwise, it can cause dangerous infections affecting your little one.

18. Peas

Peas contain high amounts of folic acid — a crucial compound for the healthy development of the baby. Folic acid further prevents the risk of genetic defects in your child.

As peas are filled with fiber, they also help with proper digestion and avoid acid reflux.

Best way to consume:

I love eating peas and this is my simple go-to recipe.

Chuck in shelled peas in a pan with a sprinkle of salt, pepper, and olive oil. Cook them for about 10 minutes or until they are tender. Eat them as a side salad for lunch!

19. Low fat ice cream

Low-fat dairy products have an incredibly soothing effect on gestational heartburn. 

Some mothers go for a light vanilla-flavored ice cream mixed with a few fruits — a perfect healthy dessert — as vanilla has the least calories.

But be careful to not overindulge as it can negatively impact your and the baby’s well-being. Binge-eating ice cream can lead to severe acid reflux, specially during the night.

Best way to consume:
Experts at Dr. Sears suggest eating a few scoops of low-fat ice cream before dinner or a heavy meal can reduce the risk of gut and esophagus inflammation.

20. Brussel sprouts

Brussel sprouts are yet another excellent food for pregnancy heartburn relief. This green edible bud looks like a small cauliflower and is a popular veggie in Belgium and Brussels.

Brussel sprouts are highly alkaline in nature, making it one of the safest foods for preventing pregnancy heartburn. 

They also help reduce acidity in the stomach and aid smooth digestion.

I would, however, suggest eating just a few brussel sprouts at a time, as there may be a risk of bloating. 

Best way to consume:

Roasted brussel sprouts with a bit of cheese, pepper, and vinegar are perfect for pregnant women with heartburn. 

Brussel sprout- safe to eat for pregnancy heartburn
Image credit: @sebastiancoman

21. Broccoli

Broccoli is rich in nutrients that are necessary for healthy fetus growth. 

This cruciferous veggie is a source of folate (iron), calcium, vitamin A production, potassium and even the compounds that improve vision. 

Also, broccoli contains lots of antioxidants that keep infections at bay.

However, many women also complain of gas when they eat broccoli. To avoid the risk, I would recommend eating this green veggie in a limited amount. 

Best way to consume:

If you don’t like broccoli, the best way is to start with a tasty broccoli salad for lunch with a delicious mayo dressing of your choice. 

You certainly can’t go wrong with that, right?

22. Plain cheese

Almost all types of cheese are okay to eat during pregnancy as long as they are made of pasteurized milk. This extensive heating process eliminates harmful bacteria from milk.

Experts advise pregnant women to not eat soft cheese.

Because of its rich moisture, the growth of a harmful infection-causing bacteria called listeria may be triggered.

All hard and pasteurized soft cheese including mozzarella, parmesan, cottage, feta, goat’s, cheddar, and cream cheese, are helpful in preventing pregnancy heartburn.

Best way to consume:

I particularly like this pregnancy special cheese platter recipe by Sarah Elizabeth, containing various essential nutrients along with four types of cheese.

Relieve pregnancy heartburn symptoms with these 25 superfoods

23. Fish

Fish are rich in protein, iron, vitamin D, and omega 3 fatty acids. All these compounds are essential for healthy baby growth. 

Pregnant women should consume tuna, cod, shrimp, trout, and salmon about 2 to 3 times a week. 

However, avoid eating raw fish in the form of sushi as it increases the chance of indigestion.

Fish oil supplements such as cod liver oil capsules may trigger heartburn, particularly if they are taken in large amounts.

Best way to consume:

While most of us love fried fish, my suggestion would be to prepare grilled, broiled, or boiled fish to facilitate proper digestion.

24. Beef

Beef is also a great food for pregnant women, rich in protein, iron, and vitamin B. But it’s also quite heavy because of high-fat content. 

As long as you consume beef in small amounts, you can avoid triggering pregnancy heartburn.

Best way to consume:

Instead of going for a full steak, a better option for mommies-to-be would be a beef salad, combining tasteful veggies and beef. 

Speaking of, check out this delicious Thai beef salad recipe. You can change the ingredients per your liking.

25. Chicken

Skinless chicken is a low-fat meat option for dinner — perfect food for preventing pregnancy heartburn!

Best way to consume:

You can never go wrong with roasted, broiled, grilled, or boiled chicken along with a side of green veggies.

Many other fruits and veggies could be added to this list. However, I have discussed the top 25 foods that are perfect for mommies-to-be with gestational acidity. 

I’d love to know what type of foods you eat for preventing pregnancy heartburn. Share with me in the comments section below. ⤵️

References:

  • https://www.askdrsears.com/topics/pregnancy-childbirth/second-month/11-most-common-physical-changes/heartburn
  • https://www.aboutseafood.com/can-pregnant-women-eat-fish/
  • https://www.momjunction.com/articles/is-it-safe-to-eat-banana-during-pregnancy_00102368/#gref
  • https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/269143.php#5
  • http://www.obgynofhampton.com/recipeshp
  • https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/284815.php#benefits

Sabika

Hey hey!

I'm the creator of Women Health Hub. After graduating as a biomedical engineer, I decided to pursue health writing because of my deep passion for writing & health. In 2019, I started Women Health Hub with an aim to empower and educate women to improve their wellbeing. Besides blogging, I love playing word games, Netflix & cooking.

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15 Comments

  1. Great suggestions. I’m betting these will help non preggo mamas also! I always have heartburn and acid reflux at night time.

    1. Sabika says:

      Thanks! And yes definitely, these foods will be perfect for anyone with acid reflux, and specially for nighttime heartburn. 🙂

  2. Where was this during my last pregnancy?! I suffered from week 8! Tums were my friend — I never thought to try different foods to alleviate heartburn! I’m saving and sharing for my next pregnancy. Awesome post!!

    1. Sabika says:

      Thank you, so glad you found this list helpful! 🙂

      Oh man, it must’ve been awful! This is why it’s one of my main focuses to help women find the best foods for healing symptoms naturally.

  3. This is a great list! I will be sending to my daughter who is 4 months pregnant!

    1. Sabika says:

      Thank you Kimberlee, so glad you found this list helpful! 🙂

  4. This is a great list with a lot of really good information, thanks for sharing!

    1. Sabika says:

      Thank you, Heidi, so glad you liked it.

  5. How I wish I have this list before. I’ll definitely save this for future reference and sharing.

    1. Thanks Maria, glad you liked it! 🙂

  6. amazing post. I just stumbled upon your blog and wished to say that I’ve really enjoyed reading your blog post. After all I’ll be subscribing to your rss feed and I hope you write again soon!

  7. ayesha says:

    thank you its amazing way to get know about benefits of hubs during pregnancy heart burn

    1. Sabika says:

      Thank you so much! 🙂

  8. Ayesha sohaib says:

    hi mam can we take apple cider vinegar in morning for heart burn?

    1. Sabika says:

      Hey Ayesha, sure you can drink ACV in the morning. In fact, it works best on an empty stomach. However, please make sure you add some water and dilute it first.

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