What is the Cause of Pregnancy Cravings?
So what is behind pregnancy cravings? Great question! There hasn’t been one identified and agreed-upon cause. There are a few theories out there, but no one really knows for sure.
Theory 1: An Excuse to Eat what You Want
Some dieticians believe that pregnancy cravings are a culturally invented means to allow pregnant women to eat whatever they want without feeling guilty. While eating without any restrictions sounds like heaven on earth, it brings about unhealthy consequences both for mother and baby.
Unrestricted eating usually leads to excessive weight gain during pregnancy, which in turn can trigger gestational diabetes. This is a condition that has negative impacts on the mother and the baby. A pregnant woman with gestational diabetes has too much “sugar” circulating around in her blood. Sugar does not belong in the blood for long periods of time, but our blood carries it from our digestive tracts to the cells where it’s used for energy. In diabetes, the sugar isn’t capable of entering the cells as effectively (because of ineffective or not enough insulin), and it remains circulating in the blood. This poses risks to internal organs, especially the nerves in extremities and eyes, kidneys, and heart. Gestational diabetes has been a contributing factor to the development of high blood pressure during pregnancy, delivery by cesarean section rather than vaginally and having a very large baby (which can make delivery more difficult). For the baby, gestational diabetes poses the following risks: becoming too large and getting wedged in the birth canal, complicating delivery, breathing difficulties and low blood sugar.