Food cravings are a common occurrence among women during pregnancy. It is a sudden urge for any particular dish or snack. These cravings can occur any time of the day or night. Many women submit to these food cravings, disrupting their health cycle, leading to unnecessary weight gain. It is vital to keep a check on these cravings and substitute them with healthy alternatives.
Causes for Food Cravings during Pregnancy
Hormonal changes are the probable reason for food cravings in pregnant women, since, there are no other proven reasons. However, some practitioners suggest that some cravings are meaningful. For example, during a condition known as pica, women tend to crave for weird substances such as cigarettes, laundry and starch. This is linked to deficiency of iron in their body, however, none of these contain iron. Other studies suggest, craving for chocolates during pregnancy comes from the deficiency of magnesium.
Similarly, craving for red meat comes from the lack of protein. While these are mere contemplation, there is no proof as to why these cravings occur. Also, there is no evidence supporting that these cravings have a bad impact on expecting mothers.
Tips to Deal with Pregnancy Food Cravings
You may crave to eat chocolates, ice creams and much more during pregnancy, but it is important to stay healthy for your own sake and your baby. You need to keep a check on your cravings, especially if you have gestational diabetes.
- It is important that you have a well-nourished breakfast to keep those mid-day cravings at bay. Try to have a healthy breakfast consisting of oats, milk, eggs and fruits.
- Divide your meals into smaller portions instead of filling your stomach all at once.
- Make exercise a part of your daily routine, after discussing it with your physician. This will not only help you stay fit, but also curb hunger and distract you from thinking about junk food.
- Keep healthy snacks closer and throw away all the junk from fridge. Without any option, you will have to eat healthy food.
- According to experts, emotional craving is often translated into food craving. This is due to the hormones that cause moods swings and in turn make you need some emotional support. Keep your partner close and discuss your feelings with him.
- If you are craving a lot for chocolate or ice-cream, try to keep the portions small. This will satisfy your urge, and not harm you too much.
- Consult your doctor if you have cravings for weird food such as clay, ashes, and cigarettes.
Healthy Items for Pregnancy Food Cravings
- If you constantly crave for ice-cream, try replacing it with low-fat ice-cream or frozen yoghurt.
- Instead of going for soft drinks, try fresh lime or fruit juices.
- The dessert urge can be satisfied with sugar-free pastries and sweets.
- Go for low-calorie food instead of those with high fatty-acids.
- Instead of the deep fried potato chips, go for baked chips or popcorn
- Try dark chocolate, if you wish to eat cookies or chocolate bars.
- If you wish to eat non-vegetarian food, go for chicken and fish instead of red meat.
- Replace canned fruits with fresh fruits.
The sudden urge for a particular food, during anytime of the day is a common occurrence that a woman faces during pregnancy period. It is important to notice, whether these cravings are actually good for your health. If not, avoid such cravings and replace it with something that would be healthy for you and your fetus.