We’ve all heard of pregnant women eating weird things. Who hasn’t heard stories about some poor guy having to run out in the middle of the night to get his pregnant wife ice cream and pickles? (And yeah, that’s a weird combination).
But pregnancy cravings are a real thing. It’s not just an uncomfortable soon-to-be mom being picky. Cravings are actually a symptom that can be caused by a few changes going on in the pregnancy, like a heightened sense of smell and taste, hormonal changes, and nutritional needs. If the baby or mom is lacking in something, they’ll get a huge craving for foods that have that nutrient.
For instance, lots of pregnant women crave peanut butter. Peanut butter is loaded with good fats, iron, vitamin E, and calcium. So it may be that the baby (or mom) really just needs to increase one of those things. Plus, peanut butter is delicious.
There are also old wives’ tales that go with cravings. For instance, when a pregnant woman is craving sweet things, they say she’s having a girl. If she craves salty things, they say she’s having a boy. And some women believe that the craving is really something the baby wants. Many moms swear that the things they craved during pregnancy were the child’s favorite food once they arrived. It’s not science-backed, but who knows?
5 Weirdest Pregnancy Cravings
Weird is subjective, but these five things definitely hit the “not normal food groups” for most people.
- Pickles and Ice Cream. This just sounds gross. Though many pregnant women through the years would tell you not to knock it until you tried it. Craving pickles usually has something to do with needing salt. The ice cream might just be sweet to counterbalance it or the mom/baby might need more calcium.
- Rare Meat. This isn’t necessarily weird, but a lot of pregnant women who don’t like red meat normally crave really rare (or even raw) steak and red meat.
- Peanut Butter and Pickles. There are the pickles again. There are all sorts of combinations of pickles and peanut butter with other things. But the two together are probably the weirdest tasting concoction you’ll hear about.
- Chalk. You read that right. A lot of pregnant women get cravings for things that are not even food! Chalk is high on the list. But they might also crave paper and even dirt. A lot of people think these cravings have something to do with settling nausea, but craving non-food items is also a condition called Pica.
- Chocolate and Beef Jerky. A lot of pregnant women crave chocolate with a variety of things. This might be a take on salty and sweet, but it still seems weird to us. Ever get the craving to smother your beef jerky in chocolate sauce?
There are a lot of other cravings that are common, too. Some things are more healthy than others. For instance, many women crave fruits, certain vegetables, and even ice. And you don’t necessarily need to indulge in all of these cravings, especially if they are things that are unhealthy during pregnancy.