Having an abortion with pills can come with a lot of questions: where can I get the pills in my country? How do I use the pills safely? What are risks of complications? These questions are common, and require a little research ahead of time. But there’s one question that few women think to ask until they’re already along in their abortion process: what can I eat and drink?
The answer is simple: eat and drink as you please. When having a medical abortion, there are no restrictions to what you can have.
That said, there are some things you can eat or drink to take particular care of yourself during an abortion. Below we outline some basic recommendations for supporting your body through the process:
Staying hydrated is an important part of the abortion process. Whether you opt for water, tea, a sports drink, or ginger ale, keep the fluids coming. Dizziness and fatigue are two common side effects of abortion medication that can be made even worse by dehydration. And let’s be clear: alcohol does not hydrate you. Avoid it during the abortion.
Settle your stomach
Nausea is a common experience when using the pills. Try to eat foods that help settle your stomach. Toast, crackers, or soup can all nourish your body without contributing to stomach upset.
Another common side effect of the abortion drugs? Diarrhea. Your stomach may already feel delicate, so avoid eating foods that may contribute to indigestion. For many women, this means passing on spicy or greasy meals until after the abortion is over.
Warmth helps to relax our muscles, which can lead to less pain from cramping. You can help keep your body warm by taking in warming foods and drinks. Soup, stews and teas are all good options.
There’s no way around it: an abortion causes bleeding. To support your body during this process, consider eating foods that are rich in iron. This is especially true if you already know you’re anemic. Red meat, fish, beans, lentils, chickpeas, spinach, broccoli, and our favorite- dark chocolate- are all rich in iron.
Need more suggestions about supporting yourself through an abortion? You can read about on our Guide To Safe Abortion At Home, or visit our website for more information.
You can also stay connected with us for more safe abortion news through social media: we’re on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest.
Claire is a teacher, reproductive rights advocate, and the manager of https://www.howtouseabortionpill.org/