What should I eat during early labor at home? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 12 Old 04-29-2011, 09:45 AM - Thread Starter
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I know this thread has come up already, but now that things are imminent I figured I'd bring it up again! :-)


For those of you who have done this before ... any advice for us newbies? I'm nervous about running out of energy, but I don't want a belly full of food either ... I'm thinking yogurt, cheese, maybe scrambled eggs, juice, toast....


What worked for you in the past? What turned out to be a really bad idea? Thanks!

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#2 of 12 Old 04-29-2011, 11:07 AM
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Our childbirth educator was very adamant about making sure that it isn't something you mind revisiting during labor because it is very common to throw up during labor. So orange juice, things like that, probably a bad idea. 

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#3 of 12 Old 04-29-2011, 12:16 PM
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I didn't really eat during early labour with my first (it was late at night, I might have had a popsicle or something like that, can't remember) but with the second I did eat about 4-5 hours in, around what would have been dinnertime for me anyway.  I just had a muffin.  It sounded edible to me at the moment (I wasn't hungry but I knew it would be good to eat on schedule) and I figured it wasn't too acidic or anything like that if I did get sick later.  Plus it had lots of carbs in it for energy.


I think basically what appeals to you at the time is probably a good bet.  Personally, I can't imagine anything really heavy sounding appetizing in the middle of contractions, anyway...your body is a decent guide of your tolerance.  The exception to that might be juice, which always sounds yummy to me, but can definitely be harsh on the tummy (and throat!) later on.

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#4 of 12 Old 04-29-2011, 12:43 PM
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We were advised to have a light meal and it should be something easily digestible. I ended up with a sandwich that I later puked up, but if I'd have been able to cook I'd have gone for something like rice with chicken & veggies.



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#5 of 12 Old 04-29-2011, 01:03 PM
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DDCC... both times I really wanted to eat and did not puke.  I say go for your comfort foods- maybe those that appealed to you most during the first tri when you had m/s.  For me it was burritos, English muffins with peanut butter, and mac and cheese!  My first was long (20 hours) so I ate breakfast, lunch, and had a snack for dinner.  Later I recall having an orange and was offered a popsicle, which did not sound good.  With my second, labor hit at 9pm so I had eaten normally all day and we had gone out to dinner with my family.  I didn't eat anything after that until the baby was born about 5 hours later.  And once again I went for an orange.  lol.gif

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#6 of 12 Old 04-29-2011, 01:26 PM
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I have heard specifically to skip the orange juice.  Apple would be better.

Newbie myself... so I'm not speaking from advice.  I have some trail mix, some dried fruit, and I used to have some ginger snaps.  I just finished them, so I guess they're not going to make it to being a labor food :)

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#7 of 12 Old 04-29-2011, 01:48 PM
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I agree, you will know what you want, and be prepared to revisit it in reverse. After that I drank but just did not want to eat. I was really hungry in early labour and would have loved to have more food easily available (induction so I was stuck waiting for hospital lunch)

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#8 of 12 Old 04-29-2011, 02:48 PM
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I ate toast and cheese - and it didn't come back up!

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#9 of 12 Old 04-29-2011, 04:59 PM
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Small bites of protein bars and frequent sips icy cold Recharge or Gatorade. I've never thrown up during labor, but I usually don't have much of an appetite and am only able to get small nibbles in here and there.

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#10 of 12 Old 04-29-2011, 06:39 PM
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i never threw up with my son, and i ate quite a bit during labour i think! i remember bringing food from home, juiceboxes and snacks and i even ate half a sub from subway and chips and pop or juice...luckily the hospital we were at had a fridge for labouring moms and their families so that was nice. i just plan on having whatever i feel like that i have around the house. or sending derek out for whatever else i might want ;) a friend is making us a vegetarian lasagna for the midwives and some other foods so we'll see.

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#11 of 12 Old 04-29-2011, 08:47 PM
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I'm having available to me frozen grapes, bananas, yogurt, vitamin water, coconut water and apple sauce and salted cashews. No grain or acidic foods for me. I didn't eat at all last time though and was in labor for about 43 hours. I wasn't hungry and didnt want to eat, but wish I had. I think I wouldn't have run out of energy if I did eat. I'm asking my labor support to offer me food this time..they didn't really last time with the exception of raw almonds, which I think I did eat..I didn't throw up until about 20 hours into labor, and still hadn't had food yet.

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#12 of 12 Old 04-30-2011, 08:24 AM
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Never threw up with either of my labors but I guess each labor is different - so who knows.


During my first I seriously craved a hardees burger and my hubby went and got me it and they "let" me eat it. That was like an hour before I got my epidural and about 2 hours before I pushed a baby out. LOL


With my second, they didn't have food or drink for me there, so thankfully it went alright despite that. And hubby brought food from his family after the birth. 


I tend to crave burgers though. On my way home from the hospital we stopped off at a fast food for a burger - hard to get elsewhere where I was at.


I kinda feel like eat whatever sounds good in the moment, but it is probably wise as the others have said, to not eat anything acidic.



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