A Bun in the Oven, A Burn in the Chest

by Alina Bradford

How to eat well during pregnancy, without dying from heartburn

During a major bout of heartburn accompanied with acid reflux during my second pregnancy, I became pretty crafty about coming up with dinners that wouldn't leave my chest feeling like an open pit of lava. I did research on what food alternatives were out there, I used myself as a guinea pig, and you know what? I could still eat the foods I love, with a little tweaking, and not get heartburn and you can, too.

The Little Red Demon

We all love it, that little red demon in all of our take-out favorites. It sneaks in everywhere, the sauce on our pizzas, the marinara on our pasta, the topping on our tacos and salads.

So, how do you avoid the demon better known as tomatoes? First, and the most obvious, is to leave then off or pick them out. But, that takes out the flavor, right? Try replacing tomato slices with French cut green beans straight out of the can on tacos or salads. Order pizza and pasta with white sauce instead of red. Or, make this yummy, quick pizza at home.

Heavensent Chicken Garlic Pizza
  • 1 jar of Ragu Roasted Garlic Parmesan Sauce
  • flat bread
  • 1 can of chunk chicken breast (drained)
  • 1 cup grated mozzarella cheese

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Put flat bread on a cookie sheet. Smear flat bread with two tablespoons of sauce and top with chicken and cheese. Cook of ten minuets or until cheese is gooey.

A Dab Will Do You

A huge problem is what to top your favorite sandwich with. Ketchup will burn a hole in your chest, mustard will knock you down with one bite, and relish... let's not even go there. Of course, you could always try mayonnaise, lots of people like it, but it just doesn't have enough zip for me. So, I came up with my own condiment.

Herb Lovers Spread
  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 teaspoon basil
  • 1 teaspoon chives

Mix all of the ingredients into a sealable bowl and let sit for at least an hour, a day is better. Use just a dab because, boy, does this pack a punch!

Cheers . . . Or Not

Surprisingly, beverages can also give you fits, too. Soda, sparkling cider, and, the most dreaded of igniting drinks, orange juice, can really send you running for the antacids. The easiest thing I've found for calming the flame up is to chase the drink with milk. You can also replace these not so great drinks with a healthy, baby friendly smoothie, containing calcium, fruit, and few calories, like the one below.

Baby on Board Smoothie
  • 2 cups milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 can peaches in light syrup (drained)

Put ingredients in blender and blend on medium setting for thirty seconds or until smooth. Chill and serve.

Using these strategies I became a much happier mommy-to-be, and after preparing the family dinner, instead of dreading the impending blaze, I got to enjoy the fruits of my labor.

Alina Bradford is a freelance writer that lives in Idaho with her husband and two daughters, Samantha and Savanna. You can also visit her website.

Copyright © Alina Bradford. Permission to republish granted to Pregnancy.org, LLC.