Credits: Serg Ivanov/ Shutter-stock

PICA During Pregnancy – All You Need to Know

by | December 3, 2018

Weird food cravings are a kind of pregnancy trademark—think: vanilla ice-cream with mashed potatoes and gravy. But when your cravings leave you with a digging in the coal bins, there could be something more sinister happening. Know all about Pica during pregnancy

pica during pregnancy
Credits: Fabiana Ponzi/ Shutter-stock

WANT YOUR MAGAZINE IN PRINT? GET IT FOR UNDER $4 A MONTH RAISEVEGAN

WHAT IS PICA?

Pica is a condition in which pregnant women compulsively eat nonfood items that don’t have any nutritional value, like dirt and clay. The medical term comes from the Latin name for magpie, a bird that’s said to eat almost anything.

WANT YOUR MAGAZINE IN PRINT? GET IT FOR UNDER $4 A MONTH RAISEVEGAN

Pica During Pregnancy

COMMON PICA CRAVINGS

If all of a sudden you have the feeling to eat the coal out of the bin, or the dirt in your garden, you may have pica. The American Pregnancy Association says, some common pica cravings are:

  • Dirt
  • Clay
  •  Ice
  • Burnt matches
  • Baking soda
  • Mothballs
  • Coffee grounds
  • Cigarette ashes
  • Laundry starch
  • Cornstarch
  • Sand
  • Plaster
  • Charcoal
  • Soap

WHAT CAUSES PICA?

Nobody knows for certain what causes pica during pregnancy, but the Journal of the American Dietetic Association says, it may be connected to iron deficiency and poor nutrition. There aren’t any specific tests for pica, but since there could be a connection to vitamin deficiency, your doctor may test your blood for low levels of iron and zinc.

Thankfully, pica isn’t common among pregnant women. The American Pregnancy Association says that while pica can occur during pregnancy, it’s more often seen in kids.

WANT YOUR MAGAZINE IN PRINT? GET IT FOR UNDER $4 A MONTH RAISEVEGAN

HOW TO TREAT PICA

If you’re having unusually odd cravings, please contact your healthcare provider. They may test you for nutritional deficiency and prescribe supplements, and work with you to come up with a treatment plan. While there is no specific way to prevent pica during pregnancy, getting the right amount of nutrients may help.

YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE:


SIGN UP TO THE EXCLUSIVE GROUP WITH REGISTERED DIETITIANS JUST ASK THE DIETITIAN 

YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE:
Julie Nealon

Associate Editor, USA | Contactable via Julie@raisevegan.com

Comments

Leave a Comment