If you’re expecting a baby you’re probably reading this while munching on ice-cream and pickles. Don’t try to deny it – we’ve all been there. A flavour combination we probably found repulsive a few weeks ago suddenly has us tucking in like it’s all-you-can-eat at a Michelin-star restaurant.
There’s no doubt cravings are one of those strange pregnancy quirks that we just have to accept. But is there a reason we suddenly want to eat a whole pizza with extra anchovies or crunch ice-cubes straight out of the freezer?
Have a read about some of the oddly common pregnancy cravings and the meaning behind your sudden insatiable appetite for all things weird (but oh so wonderful).
Ice… and toothpaste
Extreme hormonal fluctuations over the 40 weeks you’re growing a baby can have an impact on your taste and smell but it’s the strange phenomenon known as pica, an intense craving for non-food items, that might be linked to an iron deficiency. Some pregnant women crave ice-cubes or coffee grounds but the whackier cravings out there have women wanting their share of toothpaste, ashes, chalk or clay. Pica cravings can be dangerous, so if you find yourself eyeing off something that’s not normally for consumption, speak to your doctor.
Meat (you’re a vegetarian)
I remember it vividly – I was driving home from work, in the middle of my first pregnancy. It was nearing dinner time. I saw the golden arches. Couple of minutes and a drive-through detour later, I was really enjoying a cheeseburger. Problem is, I hadn’t eaten a cheeseburger, or anything that contains meat, for close to 10 years. It was goood. My body’s call for protein? Iron? Maybe. The burger did contain a pickle though and that was very hard to resist. My obstetrician later told me that pregnancy multi-vitamins do a fabulous job of giving a growing bub all the additional nutrients it needs, so regular Maccas runs weren’t necessary to supplement a healthy diet (unless I just really wanted to eat it).
Spice is nice
Asking for extra spice in your meals? Pouring the chilli flakes on your plate like you would salt and pepper? You might be carrying a boy. Research suggests women pregnant with boys tend to crave spicy food and chocolate is popular with women having girls. Is it true? If you haven’t found out the sex of your baby, then you’ll just have to wait and see!
Fruit is not a weird craving by any stretch, but what can be strange is the amount some pregnant women can easily consume. Pears, apples and oranges can be crunched and slurped down by the bucketload. Not content with looking like there’s a watermelon up their jumper, some can eat close to a whole watermelon in one sitting. The juicy nature of fruit is a good thirst quencher, can help ease morning sickness or can be a subliminal message that you need more vitamin C.
Uncooked pasta gives a satisfactory crunch and an instant hit of carbs, so might be a sign you need more energy (and don’t we all in pregnancy!). Still, actually cooking the pasta or whipping up a delicious Italian meal would be much more tasty.
This is most certainly a case of you don’t know what you’ve got ’til it’s gone. You’re blasé about sushi, soft cheese and alcohol until those blue lines appear, then you’re mad for it all of a sudden, simply because you’re not allowed to eat or drink it. Things just aren’t fair sometimes.
Ice-cream with wasabi topping
Nothing wrong with ice-cream. I crave that even when I’m not pregnant. It’s the toppings that make everyone but a pregnant woman feel ill. There’s pickles, cheese, wasabi, olives, barbecue sauce or fish flakes to name a few I’ve heard of. Salty and sweet or hot and cold, it’s a case of opposites, but wanting it all at once. A less extreme salty-sweet phase has hit the supermarket shelves with salted caramel everything available these days, but an expectant mum would say it doesn’t provide the same hit. Either way, all that ice-cream is good for your – and baby’s – bones, so I say eat up while you have the excuse!
Our beloved Babyologists have revealed their craziest pregnancy cravings to us, so have a read now and see how many combinations you’ve eaten. Don’t blame us if we give you another odd idea for a pregnant mum’s snack, though!