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A new Korean skin care company borne from a battle with cystic acne believes you only need 3 products to achieve clear skin

A new Korean skin care company borne from a battle with cystic acne believes you only need 3 products to achieve clear skin

The Insider Picks team writes about stuff we think you’ll like. Business Insider has affiliate partnerships, so we get a share of the revenue from your purchase.

panacea main

  • We’re often led to believe that the more products you slap on your face, the more effective they’ll be.
  • Skin care brand Panacea supports the opposite: with only a few products – a cleanser ($24), moisturizer ($36), and sunscreen ($32) – you can have soft, hydrated, and protected skin.
  • It focuses on the contents, rather than the quantity of the skin care products, and uses cruelty-, paraben-, and sulfate-free ingredients to achieve natural, healthy results.
  • The simple, gender-neutral products streamline your daily skin care routine so you focus on the day ahead of you.
  • Right now through November 28, as a special Cyber Monday deal for Business Insider readers, take 20% off all orders with the code “HOLIDAY2018”. Or, buy one Essentials Kit and get another kit for 30% off – your code will be automatically applied upon checkout.

Starting your day with purpose and intention is easier when you have fewer things trying to capture your attention all at once. This philosophy of simplicity drives decluttering guru Marie Kondo’s organization empire, the morning routines of founders and executives, and clothing brands that, for once, are okay with customers buying just a few of their pieces, because those pieces are all they need.

Such simplicity is starting to extend into the beauty industry, but more so in the realm of ingredients (clean, natural, chemical-free) than the beauty routine itself. The Korean beauty world is notorious for espousing 10-step routines to hydrate, moisturize, tighten, and otherwise pamper your skin.

A new skin care company, Panacea, completely agrees that you should invest in beautiful, healthy skin, but believes you can pare your daily routine to just three (yes, three) essential products: a cleanser, a moisturizer, and a sunscreen.

Since it only has these three products, Panacea can focus with excruciating detail on the integrity of their ingredients. They’re cruelty-, paraben-, and sulfate-free, containing natural ingredients like Laminaria japonica (a Japanese seaweed), fig extract, and sunflower oil.

panacea aegis kit


The routine, to be followed during the day and night, goes like this:

1. Cleanse with the Daily Facial Cleanser.

The foaming cleanser contains a gentle cleansing agent derived from coconut oil to draw out impurities, a “Moisture Shield Complex” with hyaluronic acid to nourish your skin, and antioxidants like green tea extract and vitamin E to moisturize and soften. Users who struggle with acne have seen a noticeable difference in their skin after using this smooth, non-drying cleanser.

2. Replenish with the Daily Facial Moisturizer.

Once your skin is cleansed, the next step is this lightweight moisturizer. It also contains the Moisture Shield Complex, in addition to shea butter to soften your skin, and Amaranthus caudatus to minimize the appearance of wrinkles. It both feels and smells refreshing, and it’s not oily, which is especially welcome during the summer – because grease belongs on an indulgent slice of pizza, not on my face after I walk outside for five minutes.

3. Protect with the Daily Facial SPF.

Finish the routine off with the sunscreen, which is important to wear even if it’s not sunny out (UV rays still penetrate through clouds). Panacea’s scentless sunscreen has SPF 25 and broad spectrum UVA/UVB protection. Like the moisturizer, it’s light and non-oily, with a number of beneficial ingredients. Among others, there’s Houttuynia cordata extract, a Korean herb and natural antihistamine that is high in antioxidants; Cardiospermum flower extract, a soothing anti-inflammatory; and Portulaca Extract, a moisturizing and itch-relieving antihistamine.

panacea moisturizer lifestyle


Panacea was cofounded by Terry Lee, the former COO of MeUndies, after his own battle with cystic acne. As he worked on improving his skin by trying out different products, he also began streamlining the rest of his morning routine and discovered the power of beginning each day on the right foot.

Panacea combines these two journeys – better skin care and routine with intent – by condensing the traditional, intimidating multi-step skin care process into a more manageable yet equally effective one that can be done in a few minutes.

Stepping away from the gendered world of skin care and further simplifying things, Panacea intends for its products to be gender-neutral. People of all genders can benefit from its natural skin care products because the desire for nicer skin and a good start to the day is pretty much universal. Now, you don’t have to sneak pumps of your partner or sibling’s cleanser or lotion.

Panacea’s mission is as refreshing as its products. I think I let out an audible sigh of relief upon seeing I only needed to manage three steps every morning and night in order to get better skin. Each one feels light and soothing thanks to natural, chemical-free formulations, showing that you don’t have to be aggressive or complex in the way you treat your skin at the beginning and end of your day.

Shop all Panacea products here: Daily Facial Cleanser ($24), Daily Facial Moisturizer ($36), Daily Facial SPF ($32). Or buy them together in the Essentials Kit ($74).

Goodnite outlet concepts offer a wide range for all budgets

Goodnite outlet concepts offer a wide range for all budgets

Goodnite International Sdn Bhd, a leading brand in the industry, understands the importance of a good night’s sleep. To this end, Goodnite offers a range of quality bedding and mattresses for consumers to get a good night’s rest, so they wake up refreshed and ready to face the day ahead.

Goodnite, a Malaysian brand that started in 1989, has 29 years of experience in the industry, so you know you are safe when it comes to quality and reliability. In collaboration with its dealers, Goodnite has now introduced a new concept to offer its products in a range to suit all budgets.

Starting with its first factory outlet that opened in August 2018 in Seri Kembangan, Selangor, those who are looking for something affordable can now find what they need within their budget.

The factory outlet offers prices that are more economical for those looking for a good deal. Even better, Goodnite is now expanding its range of products beyond bedding and mattresses to offer furniture, making its factory direct a one-stop Goodnite outlet for the home.


The Goodnite factory outlet offers prices that are more economical for those looking for a good deal.

Quality Assured

As all items sold at the factory outlet are from Goodnite, you can be assured that the same high quality applied to its mattresses and bedding is applied to the furniture available in-store.

Goodnite is also introducing its upcoming premium outlet in Balakong, Selangor, which will feature a premium range of products. The premium outlet is targeted to open by the end of 2018.

Both the factory outlet and premium outlet offer a wide range of products to fill your home such as mattresses, bed frames, bedroom sets, sofas, dining tables and related accessories. Other outlets are in the pipeline for Penang and Johor.

The outlet concept is a new one for Goodnite, and a good way for the company to get to know its customers better in terms of their need and preferences.

Bringing its products directly to customers allows Goodnite to touch base and get closer to consumers, enhancing the company’s knowledge and understanding of its customers, and putting it in a position to offer products to better suit its customer base, to fulfil their expectations and satisfaction.

The outlet concept also allows Goodnite to offer different products across different price ranges to suit different budgets and preferences. There is something for everyone, whether you are looking to furnish your new home or to change the furniture in your existing home.


Goodnite is now expanding its range of products beyond bedding and mattresses to offer furniture.

Convenient Shopping

The different ranges offered by Goodnite with its outlet concept makes furniture shopping convenient, as you can find what you need within the range of your budget under one roof. Delivery is available within Peninsular Malaysia.

With Goodnite’s outlet concept, you’re all set to spruce up your home for the holiday festivities. Do drop by and check it out. The friendly staff is more than happy to help you out. You may check in-store for available deals and ongoing promotions that are even better deals.

Goodnite is also looking for dealers who are interested in collaborating to open an outlet. Interested parties may contact the company for more details.

■ For details, call the factory outlet at (03) 8949-9976, or check it out on Facebook at Goodnite Outlet. The factory outlet is at 25 Jalan Besar, Kampung Baru Seri Kembangan, Seri Kembangan, Selangor.

Our commitment to primary healthcare

Our commitment to primary healthcare

The 1978 Alma-Ata declaration announced global agreement that health is a “fundamental human right” and called for “urgent and effective national and international action to develop and implement primary healthcare throughout the world”.

Primary healthcare (PHC) was defined in the declaration as “essential healthcare based on practical, scientifically sound, and socially acceptable methods and technology made universally accessible to individuals and families in the community through their full participation and at a cost that the community and country can afford…

“It is the first level of contact of individuals, the family and community with the national health system, bringing healthcare as close as possible to where people live and work, and constitutes the first elements of a continuing healthcare process”.

It is universally accepted that about 90% of a person’s health needs across his or her lifetime can be covered by PHC.

PHC costs considerably less than hospital care, which provides secondary and tertiary care.

The Harvard group report to the Health Ministry stated: “There is a growing trend towards excessive spending on secondary and tertiary care services relative to primary care, a pattern which likely contributes to higher costs and worse health outcomes.”

Malaysia spends 49% of its total health expenditure on secondary and tertiary care, but only 17% on primary care.

The PHC approach is the foundation to the achievement of the shared global goals in Universal Health Coverage (UHC) and the health-related Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

The Declaration of Astana was announced at the Global Conference on Primary Health Care on Oct 25-26, 2018. The Health Ministry participated in the conference.

Some aspects of the Declaration would be helpful in helping increase Malaysians’ awareness of their right to health and healthcare:

Make bold political choices for health

“We reaffirm the primary role and responsibility of Governments at all levels in promoting and protecting the right of everyone to the enjoyment of the highest attainable standard of health.

“We will promote multisectoral action and UHC, engaging relevant stakeholders and empowering local communities to strengthen PHC.

“We will address economic, social and environmental determinants of health and aim to reduce risk factors by mainstreaming a Health in All Policies approach.

“We will involve more stakeholders in the achievement of Health for All, leaving no one behind, while addressing and managing conflicts of interest, promoting transparency and implementing participatory governance.

“We will strive to avoid or mitigate conflicts that undermine health systems and roll back health gains.

“We must use coherent and inclusive approaches to expand PHC as a pillar of UHC in emergencies, ensuring the continuum of care and the provision of essential health services in line with humanitarian principles.

“We will appropriately provide and allocate human and other resources to strengthen PHC.

“We applaud the leadership and example of Governments who have demonstrated strong support for PHC.”

Build sustainable primary healthcare

“PHC will be implemented in accordance with national legislation, contexts and priorities.

“We will strengthen health systems by investing in PHC. We will enhance capacity and infrastructure for primary care – the first contact with health services – prioritising essential public health functions.

“We will prioritise disease prevention and health promotion, and will aim to meet all people’s health needs across the life course through comprehensive preventive, promotive, curative, rehabilitative services and palliative care.

“PHC will provide a comprehensive range of services and care, including, but not limited to, vaccination; screenings; prevention, control and management of noncommunicable and communicable diseases; care and services that promote, maintain and improve maternal, newborn, child and adolescent health; and mental health, and sexual and reproductive health.

“PHC will also be accessible, equitable, safe, of high quality, comprehensive, efficient, acceptable, available and affordable, and will deliver continuous, integrated services that are people-centred and gender-sensitive.

“We will strive to avoid fragmentation and ensure a functional referral system between primary and other levels of care.

“We will benefit from sustainable PHC that enhances health systems’ resilience to prevent, detect and respond to infectious diseases and outbreaks.”

Align stakeholder support to national policies, strategies and plans

“We call on all stakeholders – health professionals, academia, patients, civil society, local and international partners, agencies and funds, the private sector, faith-based organisations and others – to align with national policies, strategies and plans across all sectors, including through people-centred, gender-sensitive approaches, and to take joint actions to build stronger and sustainable PHC towards achieving UHC.

“Stakeholder support can assist countries to direct sufficient human, technological, financial and information resources to PHC.

“In implementing this Declaration, countries and stakeholders will work together in a spirit of partnership and effective development cooperation, sharing knowledge and good practices while fully respecting national sovereignty and human rights.”

Ensuring PHC for all

The implementation of PHC for all will be dependent on knowledge and capacity building; human resources; technology; and financing.

The critical factors for the achievement of the Declaration of Astana will be learning from the past and building on its progress; explicit commitment about the task ahead; and bold political commitment.

Malaysia achieved much in health and healthcare when it was an Asian Tiger. Since then, its progress has lagged behind our neighbours in the past decade.

This is reflected in its 84th ranking in the Global Health Quality and Access Index, behind Singapore (22nd), South Korea (15th), Brunei (53rd), Sri Lanka (71st), and Thailand (76th).

According to the Harvard group, private registered medical practitioners (RMPs) account for 40% of utilisation and 65% of expenditure for PHC.

The private RMPs have provided and continue to provide cost-efficient and patient-centric services, usually in a one-stop patient-friendly facility, with choice, accessibility and affordability not a major issue.

Crucially, private RMPs have ongoing relationships with patients, a feature that has yet to be achieved by their public sector counterparts.

The Health Ministry’s commitment to PHC and its thinking on the role of the private RMPs, if any, have yet to find its way into the public domain.

Its silence on the political commitment to the Declaration of Astana is, to say the least, surprising. Anyone concerned about his or her health and healthcare would welcome some clarity on this essential issue.

Dr Milton Lum is a past president of the Federation of Private Medical Practitioners Associations and the Malaysian Medical Association. The views expressed do not represent that of organisations that the writer is associated with. The information provided is for educational and communication purposes only and it should not be construed as personal medical advice. Information published in this article is not intended to replace, supplant or augment a consultation with a health professional regarding the reader’s own medical care. The Star disclaims all responsibility for any losses, damage to property or personal injury suffered directly or indirectly from reliance on such information.
To be female on the autism spectrum

To be female on the autism spectrum

Nichole Lowther has heard the word her whole life.

Bright, even charming, she nonetheless never felt comfortable in groups or making small talk.

A hard worker, she had a tough time finding or keeping a steady job. Could it have been her unvarying wardrobe, her lack of eye contact, her encyclopedic knowledge of Star Trek?

Then there were the times in public when a loved one would pull her aside and plead, “Be normal”.

But a few years ago, when her son Matthew, now six, wasn’t meeting developmental milestones despite early intervention services, Lowther took him to a specialist.

The doctor noted certain telltale behaviours of autism – walking on his tiptoes, rocking, wiggling fingers near his eyes.

“I said those weren’t autistic behaviours, because I do them,” Lowther recalled telling the doctor. “She said, ‘Have you ever been tested?’”

So last year, at age 42, Lowther was tested. Textbook autism, she was told.

“It was such a relief,” she said. “I was like, ‘OK. Now a whole lot of my life makes sense.’”

For women and girls living on the autism spectrum, diagnosis too often comes late, if at all.

Though boys with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) are estimated to outnumber girls by four to one in the United States, experts now say that may be because many females are overlooked – their symptoms dismissed or misread.

“If girls are chronically diagnosed later than boys, they’re missing that most valuable treatment time,” said Diana L. Robins, head of the A.J. Drexel Autism Institute’s Research Program in Early Detection and Intervention.

Research has shown that children who get treatment before age two or three show the most improvement.

But for many females, diagnosis doesn’t come until they are well into adulthood. That can mean decades of social rejection, depression, anxiety and unrelenting confusion.

“We’re not doing a great job of identifying all the females,” said Thomas Frazier, chief science officer for the advocacy organisation Autism Speaks.

“We’re going to have to identify females better, particularly females who are more cognitively able, and then do studies on them to see what the differences look like.

“The fact of the matter is, it’s even hard to study right now” because the subjects are so limited.

Female autism often expresses itself differently. Recent studies suggest there may be genetic differences, even brain differences, between autistic males and females.

Some research indicates the physical makeup of the female autistic brain may be more like the brain of neurotypical males than autistic males or neurotypical females.

ASD, though it covers a wide range of traits, is characterised by social and communication challenges, repetitive behaviours, and sometimes, sensory hypersensitivity.

Many professionals – doctors, teachers, counsellors – are used to looking for autism as it appears in boys. But females on the spectrum hide in plain sight.

They go undetected because their behaviour may conform more to social norms – not enough to be fully accepted perhaps, but enough to elude detection.

They may be glossed over as merely shy. Or they may be quite verbal, even chatty, but they are confounded by the complexities of the neurotypical social world. Seeming directness may be misread as hostility.

Some have been told they can’t be autistic because they love writing and language, not science or math – a long-standing stereotype that has been debunked.

Many autistic females favour functional clothes or limited colours; one of Lowther’s friends jokes about her “prison jumpsuit” wardrobe of solid neutral tones.

But some admit to studying fashion so they can fit in, similar to lower-functioning children with autism who echo others’ words they don’t actually understand.

Girls may exhibit autism’s repetitive, narrow interests, but theirs may be less pronounced than boys’ or more like neurotypical girls.

Boys with autism may become fixated, even obsessed, with one cartoon character or a bus schedule, but what’s so odd about a little girl who sleeps with a bed full of plush animals?

What may go unnoticed is that the little girl never plays with those stuffed animals.

Yet those girls can grow into successful women who view their difference as a gift.

Temple Grandin is an internationally known animal-behaviour expert and autism advocate. The poet Emily Dickinson is also believed by many people to have been on the autism spectrum.

“They are very often incredibly creative individuals, almost like Renaissance people who are extremely bright,” said Dania Jekel, executive director of the Autism Asperger Network (AANE), a US national advocacy group.

“On the other hand, the anxiety can be completely crippling for them, especially when they are misunderstood. People see a verbal, bright woman, and the expectations for that person are way, way high.”

Like many bright young people, Nomi Kaim was excited to be venturing forth in life when she enrolled in Bryn Mawr College in 2003.

The campus was a long way from her New England childhood, where she was bullied, called a “social retard” and fell into a depression she couldn’t shake.

But Bryn Mawr only lasted a year.

The work wasn’t so hard, but there was too much of it for her to process. Her roommate hated her. There was too much noise everywhere. Her depression was crushing.

When she went home, she was hospitalised, one of many times in the years to come.

It was around then, just before her 21st birthday, however, that her issues finally got a name. She was diagnosed with Asperger’s syndrome, a high-functioning form of autism.

“I felt this great sadness,” she said. “I felt this sense of dread and humiliation.”

Eventually came acceptance. She hasn’t been able to hold a full-time job, but she volunteers at AANE, counselling other women.

Kaim, 35, thinks that if her autism had been detected when she was a child, if she’d gotten help early enough, her life might be different. She might have finished college and become a writer.

But it’s more than that. “My self-esteem might have been preserved,” she said. “I might have felt less afraid of the world and not so alone. I felt I was defective.”

Depression and anxiety frequently accompany people with ASD, but experts find that depression is especially prevalent among females beginning in adolescence.

Eating disorders are also common. So is post-traumatic stress disorder, as well as emotional or sexual victimisation.

“It’s a major issue because women on the spectrum have a hard time gauging the motives and depth of feeling from other people,” said Anthony Rostain, a professor of psychiatry with Penn Medicine and an expert in adult development disorders.

“In the desperation to feel appreciated, they’re often taken advantage of, and sometimes even more seriously mistreated or abused.”

Jessica Brown, 36, of West Philadelphia, was 30 years old before she was diagnosed.

Even then, she recalled, one man she dated would try to pressure her to do things sexually she didn’t want to do. He’d say, “Oh, that’s because of your autism.”

Looking back, she said, “It felt like a form of gaslighting”.

But she had always felt like an outsider. Growing up in a black, middle-class family in the largely white, suburban town of West Chester, she often felt the odd one out.

As a girl who didn’t understand the neurotypical world’s social cues, Brown was told she was mean, even a bully.

A college honours graduate, she nonetheless had trouble keeping jobs because of social missteps, rather than work performance.

Now, she works with special-needs children. She finds joy in reaching those others cannot – like a little boy deemed nonverbal who piped up and said, “Jessica. Hi.”

Brown is learning her own abilities. “I can read raw emotion really well,” she said. “I’m not great at the social stuff, but I can really motivate kids. It’s easy to let them know I love them.”

Self-knowledge has helped Lowther too.

Like a lot of autistic people, she finds social media a blessing: “I join groups that are focused on things I like, and I can say things without being labelled a freak.”

After-school programmes for nonverbal children like her son have proved scarce, she said, so they find their own adventures.

Sometimes, he melts down in public, she said, and people stare. “So I start acting like a dinosaur to take the attention off of him. There’s something to be said for a 40-year-old woman running around the Moorestown Mall acting like a dinosaur.”

At times, she still needs her noise-cancelling headphones: “Some sounds I can feel in my bones,” Lowther said.

Adults still get annoyed by her behaviour, but at least now they know why.

“To be honest, knowing that my son and I are on the same journey is cool,” Lowther said.

“He goes to therapy to help with behaviours and speech, and I think that they’re helping me too, because I sit in on them.

“Maybe I’ll never be ‘normal’ to most people, but they don’t seem to enjoy themselves very much.

“I have my husband and son, and I find my own joy. I’m never lonely in my imagination. There’s always something to do there.” – Philly.com/Tribune News Service

Some of the most popular DNA kits are on sale right for Black Friday at their lowest prices ever — here’s a quick break down of each one

Some of the most popular DNA kits are on sale right for Black Friday at their lowest prices ever — here’s a quick break down of each one

The Insider Picks team writes about stuff we think you’ll like. Business Insider has affiliate partnerships, so we get a share of the revenue from your purchase.

DNA Testing 23andMe

Hollis Johnson/Business Insider

By nature, Black Friday is a day that’s very much about materialism. Consumers flood stores and online sites in search of deals on tech, men’s fashion, women’s fashion, mattresses, and more. But if you’d prefer to spend your money on experiences or learning opportunities, a DNA kit might be the perfect way to do so.

If you’ve ever been interested in understanding more about your ancestry or family history, right now is the best time to get a DNA kit as many of the best ones are discounted for Black Friday. (Might we add, they also make great holiday gifts for friends and family!)

Brands like 23andMe, AncestryDNA, and Vitagene all make easy-to-use at-home kits that can provide results in a matter of weeks. In addition to your family history, certain kits can assess your health, provide useful insight to improve your fitness, or track down historical relatives.

While many tests unveil similar data, there are key differences between each one. Check them out below and compare deal prices.

Looking for more deals? We’ve rounded up the best Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals on the internet.



$49 (Originally $99) [You save $50]

With over 1 billion family connections, AncestryDNA is the best-selling DNA test you can buy. The service helps you discover the people and places that made you who you are by tapping into 350 regions across the world – two times more than the next leading competitor.

The current price is the lowest it’s ever been (and possibly ever will be).



$99.99 (Originally $199), available on Amazon [You save $99.01]

Save up to $70 on DNA kits at 23andme.com.

The 23andMe kit is one of the most in-depth at-home DNA tests you can take. Not only will it break down your ancestry, but it will also discover your genetic health risks for diseases like Parkinson’s or Alzheimer’s, carrier traits for diseases like Cystic Fibrosis and Sickle Cell, report on your wellness with details like sleep patterns and lactose intolerance, and other genetic traits. If you’re only interested in learning your ancestry you can buy the genetics kit for half off.

National Geographic Geno 2.0


$55.99 (Originally $99.99), available on Amazon [You save $44]

The National Geographic Geno 2.0 Next Generation provides a breakdown of your regional ancestry by percentage, going back as 500,000 years. Once your DNA sample is submitted and processed, you can access the data via the Geno 2.0 smartphone app, where an easy-to-understand video walks you through your ancestry. You’ll learn about which historical relatives you could be related to.

MyHeritage DNA


$49 (Originally $75), available on Amazon [You save $26]

MyHeritage DNA is one of the easiest DNA tests to complete. Unlike other tests that require several vials of saliva, this test can be completed in two minutes with a simple cheek swab. With a huge database of DNA Matches, the test pulls data from 42 regions. Once your results are in, you’ll learn about your ancestry and potential family members you’ve never met.

Family Tree DNA

Family Tree DNA

$49.99 (Originally $79), available on Amazon [You save $29.01]

Family Tree DNA offers an in-depth genetic analysis of your genetic makeup by regions as well as your lineage over time. It is also is one of the best tests for finding and connecting with distant relatives. The Family Matching System pairs other users with similar genetic make-up, so if you’re looking for a long lost sibling, there’s a decent chance you’ll find them here.



$99.99 (Originally $259.99), available on Amazon [You save $160]

If you’re interested in learning about your DNA to better improve your health, the Helix DNAFit kit is the way to go. In addition to your ancestry, this test provides fitness and nutritional insight, so that your workouts and diet best fit your genetic makeup. It will also unveil injury predispositions. Originally priced at $300, you won’t find a better deal on any other day of the year.



$57.95 (Originally $99) [You save $41.05]

Vitagene is another great test for learning about your ancestry as well as your health. The easy two-minute saliva test is processed in four to six weeks (which is a lot quicker than most other tests), and you’ll get a full breakdown of your ethnic mix and global ancestry. The health insight comes as a diet plan, fitness plan, and personalized vitamin plan tailored to your DNA.

Tips on how to avoid that morning sickness

Tips on how to avoid that morning sickness

It is not clear what causes morning sickness – the nausea and vomiting many women have during pregnancy.

There are home remedies you can try that may help. If you start to lose weight, if you can’t keep liquids down or if vomiting becomes severe, see your doctor right away.

Although it is called morning sickness, that term is not accurate, as the symptoms can happen any time, and in some women, may last all day.

Morning sickness is most common during the first trimester. But when it starts and how long it lasts can vary quite a bit.

In a small number of cases, morning sickness can be an issue throughout pregnancy.

Doctors don’t know exactly why women get morning sickness. The hormone changes that happen during pregnancy are thought to play a role.

When pregnancy begins, a woman’s body starts making a hormone called human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG). Morning sickness often kicks in when production of hCG begins.

The production of hCG tends to be higher in twin pregnancies. The fact that morning sickness is more common in women carrying twins seems to reinforce the theory that hCG is connected to morning sickness.

Whatever the cause, morning sickness can be hard to prevent. There are ways you may be able to make it less bothersome though.

For example, nausea tends to be worse when your stomach is completely full or empty. So, rather than eating three large meals a day, eat smaller amounts more often.

Many women find that snacking on soda crackers or dry toast can quell feelings of queasiness.

Drink plenty of fluids throughout the day, too. But don’t drink too much at one time. Water and ginger ale are often good choices.

Limit the amount of greasy, spicy or fatty foods you eat, as they are more likely to cause nausea and vomiting.

The smell of certain foods, especially during cooking, can be a problem for some women with morning sickness.

Try to avoid using problematic foods if you are preparing meals, and enlist someone else to help make meals if cooking triggers nausea.

Also, pay attention to when and how you take your prenatal vitamins.

Some women find that taking them in the morning makes nausea worse. If that’s the case for you, try taking them at night.

Having a snack, chewing gum or sucking on hard candy after you take your vitamins may also help.

Taking a children’s chewable multivitamin in place of prenatal vitamins may be an option too.

If nausea and occasional vomiting continue, your doctor may suggest over-the-counter medications.

A combination of the sleep aid doxylamine succinate and vitamin B6 often decreases symptoms. Both of these medications are safe in pregnancy.

If that doesn’t work, a prescription medication, such as promethazine or ondansetron, may be useful.

For most women, morning sickness is a nuisance that fades as pregnancy progresses.

However, a small percentage of women develop serious nausea and vomiting, called hyperemesis gravidarum, which could threaten their health, and possibly, the health of the baby.

Women who have hyperemesis gravidarum often become dehydrated and lose weight. If it isn’t treated quickly, it can lead to hospitalisation.

In the hospital, intravenous fluids and nutrition may be used to treat severe morning sickness.

Rarely, hyperemesis gravidarum may result in premature birth or low birth weight.

Fortunately, morning sickness can often be successfully managed – even in more serious cases – without long-term health risks to the mother or baby. – Mayo Clinic News Network/Tribune News Service

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