Serious sickness affects up to 2 per cent of pregnancies.
The condition, hyperemesis gravidarum, is defined as nausea and vomiting before the 22nd week of pregnancy.
It can lead to weight loss, dehydration and deprivation of essential nutrients for both mother and baby. Babies whose mothers have the condition can be born prematurely or with a low birth weight, which can prove fatal.
In the latest study, experts from the Norwegian Institute of Public Health found women were three times as likely to suffer if their own mothers had the condition during pregnancy.
The experts examined more than two million births between 1967 to 2006 for the study.
Acting as a comparison group, the partners of men whose mothers had suffered from the sickness had no increased risk.