Take a Poll

If HG continued past mid-pregnancy, did you experience complications during delivery related to your poor health such as a strained ligaments/joints, pelvic floor damage, prolonged or weak pushing, fainting, low blood pressure, low pain tolerance, forceps/assisted delivery, broken bones, nerve damage, low amniotic fluid, fetal problems due to difficult delivery, etc.?


View Results »

Deficiences of Nutrients

Numerous deficiencies have been found in women with HG, including pyridoxine and zinc. The exact correlation with nausea and vomiting is not entirely clear. However, it is known that some level of deficiency occurs in every case of HG, and in some cases, administration of vitamins with parenteral fluids (IV's) can significantly decrease nausea and vomiting. Thiamine, which is depleted quickly, is a very important nutrient that when deficient, may cause neurological damage or even death.

The severity and duration of nausea and vomiting greatly influence nutritional status, which in turn can also adversely affect taste perception and sense of smell.

Other Theories & Links »

Offsite Resources:

Prevalence and severity of nausea and vomiting of pregnancy and the effect of vitamin supplementation
Svetlana Emelianova, Paolo Mazzotta, Adrienne Einarson, Gideon Koren
Nausea and Vomiting of Pregnancy: State of the Art 2000 Conference

Nausea, vomiting and nutrition in pregnancy
Glenda Lindseth, Marlene Buchner, Patti Vari, April Gustafson
Nausea and Vomiting of Pregnancy: State of the Art 2000 Conference

Clinical undernutrition states and their influence on taste.
Davidson HI, Pattison RM, Richardson RA.
The Proceedings of the Nutrition Society. 1998 Nov;57(4):633-8.

The nutritional status and treatment of patients with hyperemesis gravidarum.
van Stuijvenberg ME, Schabort I, Labadarios D, Nel JT.
Department of Human Nutrition, University of Stellenbosch, South Africa.
American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology 1995 May;172(5):1585-91

This was a descriptive, controlled study of 20 patients with hyperemesis gravidarum whose nutritional status was assessed and compared with that of 20 pregnant, nonvomiting matched controls. Blood nutrient status was reassessed after 10 days of treatment with an intravenous saline solution containing a multivitamin preparation and again at day 20. Mean dietary intake of most nutrients fell below 50% of the recommended dietary allowances and differed significantly (p < 0.01) from that of controls. More than 60% of the patients had suboptimal biochemical status of thiamine, riboflavin, vitamin B6, vitamin A, and retinol-binding protein. Vitamin C, calcium, albumin, hematocrit, and hemoglobin values were significantly higher in those patients where the duration of vomiting had been longer, suggesting the presence of dehydration. Treatment was associated with cessation of vomiting and improvement in blood nutrient status. The hyperemetic pregnant patient is at nutritional risk; prompt initiation of corrective therapy is recommended.

Decline of taste sensitivity in protein deficient adult rats.
Ohara I, Tabuchi R, Kimura M, Itokawa Y.
Laboratory of Nutrition, Faculty of Home Economics, Kobe Women's University, Japan.
Physiology & Behavior 1995 May;57(5):921-6.

The influence of dietary protein levels on taste sensitivity was studied in adult rats. Protein free diet group showed significantly lower taste sensitivity and renal reabsorption rate than other protein containing diet groups, while serum zinc and creatinine concentrations, and creatinine clearance were not affected by dietary protein level. Degeneration of filiform papillae and imperforation of taste pore of fungiform papillae were observed in protein free diet group. This experiment implies at least 2.5% dietary protein is required to manifest normal taste function in the adult.

[Studies on hypogeusia in hyperemesis gravidarum]
Mizumoto Y, Okuyama T, Endo R, Nakajima H, Hiramatsu H, Horie M, Masuda H, Kobayashi S, Saeki H, Abe M.
Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, SDF Central Hospital, Tokyo.
Nippon Sanka Fujinka Gakkai Zasshi 1994 Jan;46(1):35-41 [Article in Japanese]

We measured changes in gustatory sensitivities and gustation threshold levels and those of some trace elements, vitamin E and lipids in the serum of 38 patients suffering from hyperemesis gravidarum, 12 normal pregnant women in the first trimester and 22 healthy non-pregnant women by means of filter discs and an electrogusto meter (EGM) and we obtained the following results. 1. Gustatory sensitivity to sweetness was found to be significantly lowered in the patients with hyperemesis gravidarum when tested with filter discs (p < 0.05). 2. Gustation threshold levels were significantly lowered in the patients with hyperemesis gravidarum and the normal pregnant women tested with the EGM (p < 0.01). 3. There was considerable heterogeusia of women in the patients with hyperemesis gravidarum (p < 0.05). 4. Zn and Mg in serum decreased (p < 0.01), but Cu increased significantly in the patients with hyperemesis gravidarum and the normal pregnant women (p < 0.01). 5. Total cholesterol and phospholipid in serum significantly decreased, but lipid peroxide in serum significantly increased in the patients with hyperemesis gravidarum (p < 0.01). These results suggested that the gustatory test was helpful in investigating hyperemesis gravidarum and that biological defense systems (scavenger systems) to free radicals were damaged in patients with hyperemesis gravidarum.

Hyperemesis gravidarum.
Abell TL, Riely CA.
Gastroenterology Clinics of North America. 1992;21:835-49

HG may be related to nutritional deficiencies such as pyridoxine and zinc.

Vitamin B6 is effective therapy for nausea and vomiting of pregnancy: A randomized, double-blind placebo controlled study.
Sahakisn V, Rouse D, Sipes S, et al.
Obstetrics and Gynecology. 1991;78:33-6.

Vitamin B6 deficiency may contribute to HG. In a randomized, double-blind placebo-controlled study of hyperemetic pregnant women, pyridoxine 25 mg every 8 hours significantly reduced vomiting.

[The importance of calcium imbalance in hyperemesis gravidarum]
Slavov I, Chapkunov P.
Akusherstvo i ginekologiia. 1973;12(5):394-9 [Article in Bulgarian]

Updated on: Sep. 15, 2022

Copyright © 2000-2015 H.E.R. Foundation • 9600 SE 257th Drive • Damascus, OR 97089 USA