Pregnancy cravings are weird, right?
Who sits around thinking, “You know what would be really awesome with this peanut butter fudge sundae? Dill pickles!”
A pregnant person thinks this way, that’s who!
I mean, I get it.
The salty, and sweet……and the sour?
Yeah, it’s a little bit strange, for sure. Have you ever considered why pregnant people crave things though?
Blame it on the Hormones
You should know this by now.
Pregnancy hormones are whack.
When the cocktail of hormones swirling through the body shifts during pregnancy, dopamine levels can drop and this leads to cravings. Specifically, those things that cause us to feel good- like ice cream, or cheese, or tapioca Boba teas- “comfort foods”.
When we feel good, we release serotonin and oxytocin…happy hormones!! So naturally, the foods that we connect to happy times, or pleasant memories may be the foods that bring us the most comfort, and therefore send our dopamine levels back up. Maybe it’s the nutrients we are lacking…
Dill pickles contain potassium, and salt which help regulate our magnesium levels (chocolate also has lots of magnesium!)
Dairy is high in calcium.
Cookies, cake, and plates of pasta generally are high in carbohydrates and fatty foods often are high in essential fatty acids (EFAs).
Speaking of fat….
Building a human being requires lots of things from a pregnant person’s body. Perhaps these cravings are just a way of replenishing the things that are being depleted while we create an entire left lung, maybe?
It’s ok to crave things, and it’s ok to give in to those cravings- in moderation. Be sure to leave plenty of room in your diet for healthy fats, leafy greens, and colorful fruits and veggies. These are the best ways to get the things our body needs when creating another human being.
What if the cravings aren’t so normal?
Occasionally, a person can develop a taste for the…unusual. Like gravel, or dirt, or paper. This is called Pica. Pica is a condition in which a pregnant person feels the need to consume these things. If you are experiencing this condition, please discuss it with your care provider. They can help determine why you feel the need to eat these unusual things, and how to stop so you don’t endanger yourself, or your baby.
We would love to hear what your current pregnancy cravings are! Share them with us in the comments below!