One of the main things people expect when they get pregnant is pregnancy cravings. They are prepared for all kinds of cravings - potato chips, crispy dosas, garlic bread, and of course, chocolates. But did you know that there could be a real scientific reason behind each of these cravings? Read on to find out why you have all of your crazy cravings:
1. Sour foods
The most common cravings for most mothers is sour foods. They will try to eat anything sour whether it is that tangy lemon pickle or that imported bottle of pickled gherkins. This may be due to a craving for citrus or due to low sodium levels. There is no harm in having the pickle as long as you don’t eat too much of it. If eating orange curbs the craving, then it probably is due to a lack of Vitamin C. If it doesn’t, then it could indicate low sodium levels.
We all have cravings for chocolates. But during pregnancy, the cravings might increase just a little bit. This is because you crave something sweet. But too much chocolate is harmful during pregnancy since it contains caffeine. So limit the amount of chocolate you eat in a day. You could have a bowl of fruits with some low-fat chocolate syrup drizzled over it.
3. Dairy products
Pregnant women often crave for dairy products like milk, cheese and yoghurt. This may indicate a lack of calcium, proteins and fat. The problem with this is that they are high in calories. So when you have these cravings, go for low-fat options. Low-fat Greek yoghurt is a good alternative to regular yoghurt.
4. Salty foods
Salty foods like potato chips and pickles could mean that you have a lack of sodium. Instead of buying these processed foods, you could instead add a bit of extra salt to your diet. As a snack, if you are craving something salty and crunchy, toss some fresh crunchy slices of carrot and beetroot into a bowl and add salt and lemon to your taste.
5. Greens and beans
Yes, some pregnant women have sudden cravings for lentils, beans and greens while they are pregnant. This might be the body’s way of saying that it needs more protein, vitamins and minerals. Since these are healthy foods, go ahead and eat all you want.
Women who drank coffee on the regular even before getting pregnant are more likely to develop cravings for coffee. This might just be due to tiredness or perhaps headaches and depression. But coffee is to be avoided during pregnancy as it contains a high level of caffeine. When you do drink coffee, opt for sipping on black coffee with no added sugar. This will help minimise the amount of coffee you consume.
7. Ice cream
You don’t really need a reason to binge on ice cream - the sweet, creamy texture of the ice cream is all you need to think about before buying it. So it is no surprise that pregnant women crave for ice creams. Since ice creams are laden with sugar and unwanted calories, it isn’t really a healthy snack. A healthier alternative is a cup of low-fat frozen yoghurt topped with freshly cut fruits.