Morning Sickness

Premier Health providers answer frequently asked questions about midwives.

Can morning sickness cause weight loss?

Dr. Heather Hilkowitz discusses morning sickness and weight loss. Click play to watch the video or read the transcript.

Can morning sickness cause weight loss?

One of the most common questions in early pregnancy taking care of patients suffering from nausea and vomiting...they’re really worried about the couple of pounds they may have lost because of not being able to get the dietary intake they are used to. We all want to reassure our patients that, yes we all think it’s important to follow that weight loss; if it becomes extreme we are going to go down that path and investigate it, however losing a couple of pounds here and there in the first trimester during this period of nausea and vomiting is usually very well tolerated and it’s okay. To impart that to mom, your body is going to do everything it can to support that pregnancy even if it’s at your cost. So, even if you’ve lost a couple of pounds, your baby is going to be okay. We’re going to get you through this and a little bit down the road things are going to feel so much better.

 

Some weight fluctuation can be expected with morning sickness, but too much weight loss can be a health concern for the mother and baby, according to the National Institutes of HealthOff Site Icon (NIH). Women who lose more than two pounds in a week should contact their doctor, according to the NIH.

Too much nausea can lead to a loss of fluids and vital nutrition, according to the American Association of Family Physicians [Add off-site icon with alt tag: You are leaving the Premier Health website, link to http://www.familydoctor.org/ in a new window] (AAFP). According to the AAFP, a woman should contact her doctor if she experiences the following:

  • Inability to keep fluids down for more than a day
  • Vomiting blood (which can appear bright red or black)
  • Vomiting more than four times in one day
  • Weight loss of more than two pounds

For more information about weight loss and morning sickness, talk to your doctor.

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Source: Heather Hilkowitz, MD, Hilltop Obstetrics and Gynecology