Cravings, a sudden rush or desire for a particular kind of food can be difficult to control. Outside of pregnancy, it may not be much of a concern but during pregnancy, almost everything is given extra thought. So what happens if you ignore pregnancy cravings?
The simple answer is nothing. There is no scientific evidence to support that ignoring your cravings could harm you and your baby. But we must admit that ignoring cravings can be pretty hard and after long periods self-starvation, you may become prone to overeating or even emotional eating. It’s safe to indulge in the things you crave with moderation.
What Happens If You Ignore Pregnancy Cravings?
To clear up other questions you may be having around cravings during pregnancy, this article will be answering some of the most common questions asked about pregnancy and cravings. So let’s get to it as we discuss what happens if you ignore pregnancy cravings and even more about pregnancy cravings.
Should Pregnancy Cravings Be Ignored?
While most cravings are not unhealthy, deciding if you should ignore your pregnancy cravings or not is not that simple. The first question you should ask yourself is: what exactly are you craving. It is believed that the things we crave may be things that the body is lacking. So, where your cravings are healthy foods, feel free to indulge in it and satisfy your buds.
However, if the things you crave are unhealthy, maybe containing excess salt or sugar, you may want to ignore your cravings completely or have them in little quantities where unavoidable. It is always best to discuss with your doctor or nutritionist when the cravings last for extended periods and the foods you desire are not very healthy.
Read Also: Is Cream Cheese Safe During Pregnancy?
What Happens If You Don’t Get Cravings During Pregnancy?
Most expectant mothers wish to savor every bit of the pregnancy experience. Cravings are a common part of the pregnancy journey for most women and it is often attributed to the hormonal changes going on in the body during pregnancy.
It is completely fine and even normal to not get any craving of any kind during pregnancy. It does not mean that you are missing out on anything or that your baby or your pregnancy is not progressing well. It’s nothing to worry about.
Infant, not getting cravings during pregnancy can be a good thing. Cravings often are for sweet or sugary foods which are mostly unhealthy and can lead to the addition of unneeded weight. It could even lead to poor eating habits where junk gradually becomes a replacement for main, healthy meals, putting the health of the mother and the baby at risk.
If you do not crave anything, you should enjoy the moment as all pregnancies are different. The positive is, you do not have to do the work of trying to manage your desires which would be the case if you desire foods that are not good for your health.
Focus on eating healthy meals and eating at the right time. Cultivate a good eating culture and stick to your meal plans so that you can provide your body with the essential nutrients and other nutritional requirements needed for a healthy pregnancy.
FAQ: What Happens If You Ignore Pregnancy Cravings
Are Pregnancy Cravings Important?
Cravings are not a vital part of pregnancy but a component of the experience for many women. They could be a signal for what the body is needing or just what your body may desire at that point.
Cravings are influenced by a range of factors ranging from hormonal, to cultural and psychological. Where you crave healthy foods like lean proteins or fruits and vegetables, it could be a sign that your body needs the nutrients contained in this food sources.
However, cravings tend to be of mostly hormonal causes leading to a strong desire for certain foods or an aversion for them. It’s not always an indicator of what the body needs. It’s okay to satisfy this urges if it helps make you feel better and more comfortable.
Those induced by one’s psychological state may bring about emotional or comfort eating. This usually involves binging on sweets and snacks. And because the pregnancy phase is a delicate one, foods like this must be consumed minimally to protect your health and that of the baby.
Can You Avoid Pregnancy Cravings?
While there are many theories about cravings in pregnancy, in reality, there is nothing that can be done to avoid cravings. Some women may not experience pregnancy cravings all through the journey, but for those who do, there is nothing that can be done to prevent it.
Although, there are simple ways to manage your cravings and make them less discomforting. The easiest route is by eating regular and balanced meals. Ensure your meals contain a variety of nutrient-rich food sources. This ensures the body gets it daily nutritional needs and helps to keep cravings under control.
Eating regularly also helps prevent or manage cravings as some cravings are hunger induced. Feel free to consume healthy snacks in between meals.
Reaching out to your loved ones, family and friends can also help as some cravings have psychological routes. Taking care of yourself and avoiding stress will also go a long way in managing cravings of physiological causes. Also drink plenty of water to avoid dehydration as it could be a cause too.
Where cravings are unhealthy and unavoidable, you can find healthier alternatives or home-made options.
Bottom line, eat well and on time. Take good care of yourself. Get an adequate amount of sleep and stay connected to people who make you feel loved, seen, and supported.
Common Pregnancy Cravings?
Pregnancy cravings vary from person to person. However, there are foods that are commonly craved by many during pregnancy mostly for the comfort that comes from their consumption. Some of the common pregnancy cravings include:
Sweets like cakes, candy, chocolate, and ice cream leave a savoury feeling on our taste buds and can be pleasurable. One of the reasons why it is a common craving. The desire for sweets if often influenced by hormonal factors.
Nausea is a common problem in pregnancy and can be horribly discomforting. For some people, the consumption of salty snacks helps relieves nausea. This craving may also arise from the body’s need for an increased sodium uptake. Examples of salty snacks include chips, salty nuts, and pretzels.
This is another common Pregnancy craving. Pickles and other sour foods can be pleasing to the changing taste preferences.
Fruits are naturally sweet and can help with hydration. Common fruit cravings include watermelon, mangoes, and oranges.
The strong taste and sensation created by spicy foods can be enjoyable for some people.
Other common cravings include:
- Carbohydrates, which may be due to energy needs
- Dairy products probably influenced by the body’s need for calcium and protein
- Meat, likely an indicator for iron uptake to be increased
Are Pregnancy Cravings What The Baby Wants?
During pregnancy, the fetus takes all it needs for its development from the mother. As such, cravings are not direct reflections of what the baby wants. Cravings are however indicators of what’s going on in the mother’s body. Pregnant women should listen to their bodies and speak with healthcare professionals if the craving are difficult to manage.
The exact cause of cravings are yet to be understood though from studies, it is believed to be due to hormonal, nutritional, physiological, or psychological needs. In addition, it could be an indirect reflection of what the baby may be needing or what is needed for the pregnancy.
Weirdest Pregnancy Cravings
Some pregnancy cravings are considered weird because they are very usual combinations of food. However, it should be noted that with pregnancy cravings just like everything that comes with pregnancy, the wellbeing of the mother and baby are of utmost importance. And not what is considered usual or unusual, So long as these food preferences pose no harm.
Having said that, below are some food combinations desired during pregnancy that are considered some of the weirdest pregnancy cravings.
- Cheeseburgers with jelly or jam
- Peanut butter and pickle sandwiches
- Pickles with ice cream
- Ice cream with hot sauce or chili powder
- Fruit dipped in ketchup
- Watermelon with mustard
- Cucumber slices dipped in vinegar or lemon juice
- Pizza topped with chocolate or marshmallows
- Mashed potatoes with gravy and ice cream
- Oreos with salsa
- Sour cream and onion chips with maple syrup
- Spaghetti with melted chocolate
What Week Does Pregnancy Cravings Start?
Pregnancy cravings can start at any week or trimester in the pregnancy. It may start in the first Trimester for some and resolve later while it may last until the last Trimester for others. It is also possible that cravings may only set in during the second or third trimester.
There is no universal week that cravings set in during pregnancy. It is an individual experience influenced by a variety of factors including cultural factors.
Can You Get Cravings In The 1st Week of Pregnancy?
It is very possible to get cravings in the first week of pregnancy. This is the case with some people and for others, it may not set in until the last week of pregnancy. You can get cravings at any week of the pregnancy but they can be managed by eating well and getting enough rest and sleep.
Food Cravings When Pregnant With a Girl
Based on folklore, it is believed that the food cravings gotten during pregnancy can be indicative of the child’s gender. For a girl, it is believed that sweets like chocolate or cake will be craved by the mother. There is no scientific evidence to support these believes and there are incidences where sweet foods were craved during a pregnancy and the child birthed was a boy.
Food Cravings When Pregnant With a Boy
The craving of sour or salty foods is associated with boy pregnancies. These believes are unfounded as you can also crave sour or salty foods while being pregnant with a girl.
Conclusion On What Happens If You Ignore Pregnancy Cravings?
When it comes to cravings during pregnancy, trust your body and let it guide you. There is no harm if you chose to ignore it or indulge in it moderately. Seek consults with your healthcare provider if you crave things like dirt, or chalk, and if you find your cravings concerning.