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Why Do Women Get Pregnancy Food Cravings?

At some point, the majority of pregnant women will have a craving for a food they might not normally eat. Some will even have a craving for a non-food item, a condition called pica. Were you aware that these cravings are actually signals our body gives us to let us know that we are deficient in a nutrient, depending on the type of the food craving you have. These are just a few of the types of cravings pregnant women typically have and how that lets them know what they need to increase in their diet.


Pickles are the most commonly known type of craving that pregnant women get. This appears to be an indication that you are not taking in enough salt in your diet. It does not mean you need to go overboard and eat the entire jar, but by all means, indulge in a pickle or two. Craving pickles may also mean that your liver needs a little extra help. Try eating some leafy green vegetables to see if this craving goes away.


A craving for ice could mean that you are iron deficient, or anemic, or that you are low in zinc. Foods that have a high amount of iron tend to also have a large amount of zinc. These types of food include spinach, beef, lamb, and pumpkin seeds.

Spicy Foods

Oddly enough, when pregnant women crave spicy foods, it is because their body is trying to cool down. Initially they feel hot while eating the spicy foods, but that causes them to break into a sweat. Sweat, in turn, causes the body to cool down.

Potato Chips

This is another salt craving, however it might be more indicative of a low intake of protein. Pregnant women need a lot of protein when creating a new life. Not eating enough protein tends to manifest itself through cravings for carbohydrates, in this case, potato chips.


Sweets are a slightly more complex craving. Women will crave chocolate regardless if they are pregnant or not, but during pregnancy this might suggest a need for more healthy sources of sugar. Eating fruit is the best way to curb this craving. You get the natural sugar along with fiber to help you feel more satisfied.

Eating healthy in today’s society is already hard enough. Throw being pregnant into the mix and hang on for the ride. Being aware of what these types of craving means will help you make better food decisions. If you need help with your nutrition, try taking some pregnancy classes in your area.