Pregnancy Cravings and Aversions

As if the morning sickness, the mood swings, and the itchy pregnancy skin weren’t enough to contend with, you might also be facing some pretty bizarre food cravings during pregnancy. You might also find yourself completely repulsed by something you liked just a few months back. These food cravings and aversions are just a few among other “interesting” pregnancy symptoms.

What Pregnancy Food Cravings Mean

Experts are not entirely sure, but food cravings during pregnancy could be your body's way of letting you know that some nutrients are missing from your diet, and that your body might be deficient in something like vitamin C or calcium. Cravings could also result from a need for stronger flavors during pregnancy, or even a need for extra calories, as nutrition in early pregnancy is crucial. Early pregnancy cravings can also be linked to a surge in pregnancy hormones.

On the flip side, you might suddenly find yourself with some food and smell aversions. It could be that your body is repulsed by what’s not good for you. Quite often, pregnant women experience not being able to stand something they once enjoyed, like coffee, fish, or garlic.

It is important to listen to what your body is telling you, whatever your pregnancy eating habits.

Common Pregnancy Cravings

You’ve probably heard all the jokes about various strange pregnancy cravings. But, although you may not have resorted to spreading mustard on your croissant or sprinkling sugar over your steak, you may be experiencing some rather unusual food cravings, especially late at night. Some common pregnancy cravings include ice cream, chocolate, spicy food, pickles, and lemon, but you may find yourself longing for something even more peculiar.

What to Do About Pregnancy Cravings

Keep in mind that although most food cravings are harmless, you should always try to choose healthy, nutritious food starting early in your pregnancy. Of course, from time to time, it's OK to indulge in chocolate and ice cream, but a better choice can be to opt for exercise to stave off those cravings, or satisfy your craving for a tub of ice cream with a healthier option like frozen yogurt.

To fight late-night cravings, eat well-balanced meals and have a light snack with a glass of milk at bedtime.

You should never give in to the urge to consume non-food items. Any substance that is not designed for human consumption could be harmful to you or your baby. Contact your doctor if you notice a craving for something weird, such as laundry starch, clay, or chalk.

Food cravings are likely to lessen as you enter the second trimester, and soon enough, you’ll be nearing your due date. By the time you take home your sweet newborn, those pregnancy cravings and aversions will be a thing of the past.

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