eli5: Why are some pregnancy cravings so strange?



eli5: Why are some pregnancy cravings so strange?

In: Biology

Building up the fetus and placenta requires a whole different set of nutritional requirements. The body passively catalogs all the nutrients from your diet. If your body lacks say a certain vitamin and the thing you eat containing high amounts of that vitamin is say, pickles, you will crave pickles.

If you eat a wide range of foods, it’s easier for your body to crave foods that easily sastify your nutritional needs. If your diet is limited or nutritionally poor, you get cravings for the limited selection your body knows about which may also be high in fats and sugars (fast food).

The parasite growing in the body (aka the “baby human” as some people refer to it) takes up a LOT of additional nutrients and vitamins.
On a subconscious level, your body correlates those missing vitamins and minerals to specific foods (pickles is common), but sometimes to very specific foods or food combos that you normally would not crave, like sardines and peanut butter.

If you are talking about craving things that are not food like ice, soap, or clay. That is called pica and it’s more common in pregnancy. It may be caused by inadequate nutrients. You should definitely talk to ob-gyn!