Pregnancy Cravings – Do They Mean Anything?

August 2, 2014

There is much debate over whether craving certain foods during pregnancy actually means anything and studies conducted in the past have failed to come up with any concrete evidence. Some health professionals believe that cravings are a sign that your body is deficient in certain vitamins or minerals whilst others believe that cravings are the result of hormonal changes in our bodies which alter our taste and smell during pregnancy. It has also been suggested that cravings for particular foods can be a response to our emotional needs when we are pregnant and that cravings can have a correlation to the sex of your unborn baby.

Whether you believe the theories or not, here are some foods that are commonly craved during pregnancy, and what that might mean for you.

Women who crave chocolate during pregnancy can sometimes be lacking in magnesium but if you’re worried about how much chocolate you’re eating then consider eating some more healthy options packed with magnesium including spinach, kale, almonds and cashews. Although, there is certainly no harm in sneaking in the odd chocolate or two.

Cravings for salty foods such as potato chips and pickles may be associated with your body’s increase in blood volume during pregnancy. Sodium is used in our bodies for controlling blood volume and because our blood volume increases during pregnancy that may explain the need for an increased sodium intake.

If spicy foods are high on your radar during pregnancy it may be a sign that your body is needing to cool off. Spicy foods make your body sweat which in turn cools down your body.

Many mums to be crave sour foods, particularly in the third trimester. It has been suggested that this craving could be our body’s desire for a varied diet which will provide the unborn baby with a range of nutrients that it needs as it grows.

Strangely enough, some women experience cravings for non-food related items such as ice, laundry detergent, chalk or dirt. These cravings have been associated with Pica disorder which is when people eat these same non-food items, possibly because of a mineral deficiency such as iron. If you are craving any of these items it’s important to see your GP for a blood test to determine if you are iron deficient. Never indulge in this craving, as these substances can be toxic.

Did you have any weird and wonderful food cravings during your pregnancy?  We’d love to hear them!

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