Cravings are something many women will experience during their pregnancy. From indulgent treats to weird and wonderful foods, cravings can seem random, but they may actually be your body’s way of telling you that you’re lacking key nutrients.
The pregnancy vitamin experts over at Vitabiotics Pregnacare carried out a survey to find out more about the common cravings experienced during pregnancy, and what they really mean. Take a look at what they found.
Sweet treats came out on top of the most common pregnancy cravings, with chocolate, fruit, ice lollies and cake being the four most common cravings.
Pregnancy makes many women more tired than usual, and you might find that the ‘afternoon slump’ hits you a little harder while pregnant. Blood sugar drops can cause these symptoms of fatigue, so we crave a quick hit of sugar from sweets, cakes and chocolate to give us a little energy boost.
Salty foods are also a common craving, including foods such as crisps, chips, peanut butter and pickles. Although a little salt is necessary, make sure not to overdo salty foods as too much salt can cause high blood pressure and other health problems.
Blood pressure can drop during the first two trimesters of pregnancy. You may find yourself easily getting tired and feeling dizzy when standing up. Low blood pressure can cause a salty food craving, so it’s worth a trip to the GP if you’re hankering after salt to make sure your blood pressure is okay.
Many women find that whilst they’re pregnant they tolerate spicy foods better, so it’s no wonder that curries are a common pregnancy craving. Spicy foods also feature in many old wives’ tales about inducing labour, although studies show curry doesn’t actually help.
Spicy food is safe to indulge in when pregnant, but it can cause symptoms such as heartburn, indigestion and upset stomachs. It’s best to indulge in this craving in moderation if you notice any of these symptoms!
The weird & wonderful
It’s not unheard of to hear stories of women eating kitchen sponges, coal or other weird and wonderful things in an attempt to satiate their pregnancy cravings. In their survey, Vitabiotics Pregnacare registered a number of unusual cravings, including:
- Garlic mushrooms dipped in custard
- Grated carrot mixed with ketchup
- Banana and ready-salted crisp toastie
- Dry chocolate powder
Craving unusual food combinations isn’t anything to be concerned about, and it can normally just be put down to hormonal and biological changes experienced during pregnancy. If you’re craving non-food items though, like coal, ice or sponges, you may be experiencing a condition known as pica. Although this isn’t generally a cause for concern, it’s worth checking in with your GP or midwife to make sure that your unusual cravings aren’t harmful or causing you and baby any health issues.
Have you experienced any weird cravings whilst pregnant? Let me know!