|

Food Cravings and Aversions During Pregnancy

Baby Talk

A food craving is a strong feeling that you must have a certain food. A food aversion is a feeling of complete revolt against a certain food and the inability to eat it.

Feel like eating a jar of pickles? Need a quart of chocolate ice cream at 2 A.M.? These are favorite TV sitcom clichés that get us to laugh at the harried husband, as he combs the streets looking for food to satisfy his pregnant wife's cravings. I doubt there are too many pregnant women out there who really crave pickles or ice cream in the middle of the night, but those wacky hormones that course through the body in the first three months of pregnancy can and do cause both food cravings and aversions. Suddenly, you just have to have a certain food, or, just as suddenly, you can't stand the sight of a food you used to love!

Although hormones are the chief culprit in these cravings and aversions, there is a theory that these are signals from your body telling you what it needs and what you should stay away from. If you suddenly can't stand even the smell of coffee or the thought of a cream doughnut, this aversion could be your body's way of keeping toxins away from your developing baby. If you find yourself craving fruit (as many women do) your body might be low in complex carbohydrates. If you feel a daily need for an ice cream sundae, your body might actually be calling for more dairy products and calcium. (In this case it's best to skip the sundae and have some yogurt or cottage cheese instead.)

Sometimes there's no explanation at all for a particular food craving or aversion. If you wake up one day and can no longer stand the smell of green vegetables, don't panic. Don't force yourself to eat foods that are "good" for you if they make you sick to your stomach. If an aversion to a nutritious food doesn't disappear in a few days, try something else that will give you the same nutrients. For example, if you can't eat broccoli anymore, make up for this loss of a good source of calcium by eating more dairy products.

If you get a craving for food that is not nutritious for you and your baby, try these two strategies:

  • Substitute. If you absolutely must have a piece of candy, for example, substitute the craving for something that's sweet but nutritious, such as raisins or dried fruits. If you must have ice cream, switch to a frozen fruit bar or yogurt.
  • Distraction. When you feel drawn to a food you shouldn't eat, get up and do something else. Take a walk, read a book, call a friend. Keep your mind busy until the craving passes. Or, have a glass of water; some say this often satisfies the urge to eat!
|

excerpted from:

Excerpted from The Complete Idiot's Guide to Pregnancy and Childbirth © 2004 by Michele Isaac Gliksman, M.D. and Theresa Foy DiGeronimo. All rights reserved including the right of reproduction in whole or in part in any form. Used by arrangement with Alpha Books, a member of Penguin Group (USA) Inc.

To order this book visit Amazon's website or call 1-800-253-6476.


Pregnancy Day by Day

Tell us your due date to receive our daily newsletter and find out what is happening in this day of your pregnancy!

Already a member? Log-in here

August 30, 2014



Keep it hot (or cold)! No one likes cold soup or warm, wilted salad. Use a thermos or ice pack in your child's lunch box to help keep his lunch fresh until it's time to eat.

stay connected

highlights

Join BIC on our mission to save handwriting and Fight For Your Write! Writing helps kids become better readers, boosts their confidence and sparks their creativity. Visit BICFightForYourWrite.com to sign our petition to save handwriting!

11 Coolest Lunch Boxes for Kids
Send your child's lunch to school in style! Check out our picks for the 11 best lunch boxes with great features from BPA-free accessories to spill-resistant fabric.

7 Important Back-to-School Safety Tips
Follow these back-to-school safety tips to make sure your child stays safe on the way to school, in the classroom, and while on the playground.

Kindergarten Readiness App Wins Gold
Our Kindergarten Readiness app won the Gold Award of Excellence in the educational category at the 2014 Communicator Awards. This valuable checklist comes with games and activities to help your child practice the essential skills she needs for kindergarten. Download the Kindergarten Readiness app today!

© 2000-2014 Pearson Education, Inc. All Rights Reserved.