Pregnant Women in Cambodia Should Resist Chewing Tobacco

Pregnant Women in Cambodia Should Resist Chewing Tobacco

 In Cambodia, many expectant mothers turn to chewing tobacco to cure morning sickness, but the World Health Organization warns that this can lead to addiction, and that chewing tobacco poses the same health risks for both mother and baby as smoking cigarettes.

"Chewing tobacco appears to be strongly influenced by beliefs passed on by older relatives," said lead author, Dr. Pramil N. Singh from Loma Linda University in southern California. "The behavior is seen as a rite of passage into womanhood. Further research is needed to find out whether village health workers actively promote its medicinal use."

Stewart Parnacott of writes that the potential risks of chewing tobacco while pregnant range from low birth weight to fetal addiction syndrome and even stillbirth.

Women in Camdobia—and elsewhere—should be encouraged to use more natural, alternative methods to ease nausea. Certain methods include the incorporation of ginger, ginger root, olives, and soda crackers into their diets, writes Parnacott.

The two substances in ginger that aid in the process of digestion are gingerols and shogaols. Both of these help to increase the secretion of digestive juices which stimulate the appetite and tone the muscles of the digestive tract. Ginger has also been found to have anti-inflammatory components. Ginger can be consumed raw or added to teas, curries, or sauces.

Olives have been shown to reduce nausea because of the presence of tannins, which ease nausea because of the mouth-drying effects caused by the tannins. Soda crackers help with nausea in a similar manner.

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