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Blog Nutrition Food Cravings When Pregnant With A Boy: Here’s What Science Says

Food Cravings When Pregnant With A Boy: Here’s What Science Says

food cravings when pregnant with a boy

It is common for pregnant women to crave various foods or odd food combinations. These urges have a lot to do with the changing hormonal levels and increased nutritional needs. For most women, these food urges tend to fall into two categories. The first is sweet, and the other is salty, spicy, or savory. Following these specific urges, numerous myths have been formulated about what women carrying different sexes crave. Join us in exploring food cravings when pregnant with a boy.

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Some people have associated specific food urges with a baby’s gender, and sadly, you cannot tell them otherwise. Upon delivery, such women can either be proven right or wrong. Those who are proven right start holding the belief that your urges can help foretell your baby’s sex. But is this the case? What does science have to say about food cravings when pregnant with a boy?

This read will evaluate all the food cravings that have been linked to women who are believed to deliver baby boys. We will look at the most common cravings and analyze what science says about these food urges. Keep reading to discover if your craving is a clue for your baby’s gender.

What Are The Food Cravings When Pregnant With A Boy?

Did your pregnancy test come out positive, and are you dying to know your baby’s gender? Well, scientifically, you would have to wait for a couple of weeks or months to know. It is because your doctor cannot tell until a scan later on in your second trimester.

Some women are not willing to wait till then. So, they have developed a manner of foretelling a baby’s gender based on their food urges. However, this is not the only tactic used to tell of an unborn baby’s gender.

Other women also look at the fetal heart rate, size and positioning of the baby bump, presence or absence of acne, and mood swings. We could go on and on in listing these factors but for today, let us focus on the food cravings.

Many women in their menstrual cycle tend to crave chocolate. So, chocolate craving has been associated with menstruation. Some women use this as an indication to tell when it is that time of the month. 

Some pregnant women have adopted the same theory, and they believe that specific food cravings can indicate a baby’s sex. With that said, let us delve into the pregnancy food craving myths associated with having a boy.

Read More: Food Cravings Before Period: Why They’re So Vicious And What You Can Do About Them

food cravings when pregnant with a boy
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Pregnancy Cravings Myths

Learning the gender of the fetus is vital for many pregnant women as it helps them prepare for several things. For most women, the insight allows them to concentrate on shopping for baby stuff related to a specific gender. Baby girls are often associated with the color pink, while boys are associated with the color blue. 

Unfortunately, knowing the gender of your unborn child can take longer than expected. Since most women can hardly wait to know, they use several purported methods to discover the gender.

One of the methods used to figure out a baby’s gender is a pregnant woman’s cravings. It is believed that women pregnant with baby girls or boys will have respective food cravings. It leads us to the concept of what pregnant women carrying boys crave. Well, let us find out.

What Food Cravings Do Pregnant Women Carrying Boys Have?

Women who are expecting boys are believed to have specific food fantasies. Some of these include:

craving spicy food
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Salty And Savory Foods

According to Medical News Today, women who are expecting boys are believed to crave savory and salty foods (1). It means they will have food urges ranging from having potato chips, pretzels, beans to fried chicken.

However, Medical News Today acknowledges no scientific evidence indicating that such food urges can help determine a baby’s sex (1). Instead, experts do reveal that several factors may cause these salt cravings.

These include boredom, fatigue, or stress (6). They could also be related to hormonal fluctuations, which are normal in pregnancy.

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craving pickles
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Pickles

There is also a belief that women with an unquenchable longing for pickles will most likely deliver a baby boy. However, evidence still suggests that food cravings cannot tell the sex of an unborn baby.

Instead, pregnancy cravings are linked to complex factors, such as the availability and access to certain foods (3). It could mean that such women are craving pickles due to their easy accessibility or availability.

On the other hand, WebMD also reveals that an overwhelming pickle craving may be an indication of your body asking for more sodium (4). A 100-gram serving of bread and butter pickles has 457mg of sodium or 20% of the recommended sodium daily limit (5).

Giving in to a pickle craving can be beneficial because these foods have several health benefits. Some of these include weight management due to their low calories, controlled blood sugar, and treatment of muscle cramps (5).

However, you still need to consult with your nutritionist and healthcare provider before adding these foods to your diet plan. They have high sodium content and may not be suitable for pregnant women with high blood pressure or cardiovascular health problems (5).

craving cheese
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Cheese

Another theory is that women who crave cheese indicate that they will have a baby boy. Unfortunately, this food urge does not mean so. Instead, a cheese craving may suggest that you are not consuming enough fats, protein, or perhaps calcium (2).

Instead of suppressing such an urge, you are asked to talk to your dietitian and indulge in cheese or some other food that provides those nutrients. They will help validate if the cheese craving is a mere food urge or if it does indicate your body’s need for fats. If this is the case, they will recommend healthy fats to add to your diet, such as olive and avocado oil.

Read More: How Many Calories Should A Pregnant Woman Eat? The Truth Behind “Eating For Two”

craving spicy food
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Are These Food Cravings Realistic In Determining A Baby Boy’s Sex?

From the discussion above, it is safe to say that most pregnancy cravings cannot help you figure out your unborn baby’s gender. As we have seen, most of these food desires are associated with something more profound.

In most cases, they are either due to fluctuating hormones or indicating your body’s need for a specific nutrient. However, some people do believe desires can help you determine a baby’s sex. It is mainly the case if such women end up delivering a boy after getting such food urges.

It makes most expectant women question how realistic these cravings are. Again, experts acknowledge that food cravings are complex and cannot be linked to gender. However, WebMD does reveal that most women who end up having boys consume the following foods, in the indicated ratios (4):

  • Proteins: More than 8%
  • Carbohydrates: More than 9%
  • Animal fats: More than 11%
  • Vegetable oils: More than 15%
craving milk
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Do Women Pregnant With Boys Have More Food Cravings?

Besides being associated with the above food urges, women expected to deliver baby boys are assumed to have more food desires. According to WebMD, pregnant women carrying boys tend to have more cravings than those carrying girls (4).

These increased urges have been associated with testosterone levels. WebMD suggests that the testosterone levels secreted by the fetal testicles contribute to the increased cravings in women carrying boys (4).

Still, on this concept, experts acknowledge that there is no specific date detailing when cravings occur (4). Similarly, no one can explain why these urges emerge (4). The lack of evidence on such concepts has led to numerous theories about cravings in pregnancy.

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The Bottom Line

What are the food cravings when pregnant with a boy should I expect? You probably have seen this frequently asked question online. Unfortunately, no food urge has been scientifically proven to indicate an unborn baby’s gender.

However, the myth is that salty and savory food and cheese and pickles cravings indicate a baby boy. Experts acknowledge this is a myth. They go ahead and explain that a salty food craving may be signaling you of increased needs for a certain nutrient, but they could also mean nothing at all.

Similarly, craving pickles may indicate that your body has low sodium content. On the other hand, a cheese craving may mean your body lacks enough fats, protein, or calcium. As much as you give in to these food urges, remember to consult with a physician to validate that there is nothing more to this food desire. Similarly, remember to always consult before making any major dietary changes.

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DISCLAIMER:

This article is intended for general informational purposes only and does not address individual circumstances. It is not a substitute for professional advice or help and should not be relied on for decision-making. Any action you take upon the information presented in this article is strictly at your own risk and responsibility!

SOURCES:

  1. How can you tell if you are having a boy or a girl? (2018, medicalnewstoday.com)
  2. Nutritional and clinical associations of food cravings in pregnancy (2016, ncbi.nlm.nih.gov)
  3. Pickles and ice cream! Food cravings in pregnancy: hypotheses, preliminary evidence, and directions for future research (2014, ncbi.nlm.nih.gov)
  4. Pregnancy Cravings: When You Gotta Have It! (2008, webmd.com)
  5. What are the benefits of pickles? (2019, medicalnewstoday.com)
  6. What causes salt cravings? (2017, medicalnewstoday.com)
R. Mogeni
R. Mogeni

Rodah is a competent and skilful writer with a deep interest in nutrition and healthy living. Her speciality is writing articles that fall under the fitness and weight loss category. Her unparalleled style of writing and ability to explain difficult concepts in simple terms has made her garner much acclaim.
Her top priority is creating informative pieces that advocate for or propel individuals towards healthier lifestyles. She believes that health is wealth, which is why she chose fitness and nutrition as her area of expertise. She believes adopting such a lifestyle is easy, as long as you are consistent, hopeful, and disciplined.

K. Fleming
K. Fleming

I am a U.S. educated and trained Registered Dietitian (MS, RD, CNSC) with clinical and international development experience. I have experience conducting systematic reviews and evaluating the scientific literature both as a graduate student and later to inform my own evidence-based practice as an RD. I am currently based in Lusaka, Zambia after my Peace Corps service was cut short due to the COVID-19 pandemic and looking for some meaningful work to do as I figure out next steps. This would be my first freelance project, but I am a diligent worker and quite used to independent and self-motivated work.

Kristen Fleming, MS, RD, CNSC

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