Meat Aversion During Pregnancy | Why & How To Deal With It

Expectant mothers experience a thrilling and life-changing period during pregnancy!

It is natural to have questions about different occurrences during pregnancy. For example, you may have new reactions to food that did not bother you before!

Have different foods made you feel sick that you may have loved before? This is common during pregnancy! Meat aversion is one of the most common phenomena to occur during pregnancy. 

Does meat aversion mean boy or girl? There is not enough data to conclusively state that meat aversion is an indicator of the gender of your baby. However, one small study in Poland hinted that meat aversion can indicate that you are carrying a boy, but these results are not comprehensive enough to prove this theory.

While meat aversion may not indicate which gender your baby is, there is more information that is interesting and important to discuss in regard to meat aversion!

Let’s take a look at why some women are repulsed by meat, if it is normal, and how to ensure your protein nutrients are met. 

Meat Aversion to Meat During Pregnancy

Some women are completely grossed out by meat during their pregnancy. Preparing food or being around any raw meat may just send you over the edge.

You may be thinking to yourself, “I have prepared meat before and never felt the least bit squeamish. Why is this happening now?” Well, let’s do a little digging. 

Why Some Women Are Repulsed by Meat While Pregnant

Some women are repulsed by meat during their pregnancies for several reasons. Hormonal changes in your body can affect the way the food tastes and smells. This can lead to being grossed out by meat!

Pregnancy can also create a heightened sense of smell and sensitivity to the smell of meat. This can lead to nausea and sometimes vomiting. 

Is Meat Aversion During Pregnancy Normal?

Meat aversion is completely normal during pregnancy. It is a common occurrence and is just a result of hormonal changes in your body as the changing estrogen and progesterone affect your sense of smell and taste.

Meat aversion is extremely common. Just be aware of your protein intake and find other ways to up those missing nutrients. 

Which Meats Do Pregnant Women Often Find Repulsive?

Many types of meat can cause distaste and disgust for women. The most common meats that women find repulsive are beef, pork, and chicken. 

Does Meat Aversion Relate to the Gender of Your Baby?

Meat aversion could possibly mean you are having a boy; however, that has not been proven yet.

“Old wives tales” will commonly say that meat aversion means you are having a boy.

There was even a completed study in Poland that showed that women carrying boys have a higher rate of food aversions.

However, this was a small study, and many more are needed to validate this current myth. 

Nutrients Provided by Meat

Meat provides needed protein, and it is a good idea to have meat in your diet at least once a week.

Meat provides protein and many other nutrients that your body needs. It provides iodine, iron, zinc, vitamins, and many important fatty acids. Meat is also full of vitamin B12, which is essential to your body. 

A pregnant lady looking uninterested at the food on her fork.

How To Ensure Nutritional Needs Are Still Met 

One way to help you continue to get the nutrients you need may still involve eating meat! Try marinating your meat in a different sauce, or use different seasonings.

If you typically like grilled chicken, maybe try baking it instead! If you can handle chicken but not beef, you can receive the necessary nutrients by eating chicken.

However, if all meat is making you feel sick, do not try to tough it out and still eat meat. You can get your nutrients in other ways.

Beans, lentils, nuts, seeds, eggs, and iron-rich foods such as spinach can help ensure that you and your baby are being nourished with sufficient nutrients.

Iron-fortified cereals, protein powders, and tofu are also great options. 

What Causes Food Aversions During Pregnancy?

Food aversions during pregnancy are common and are most likely caused by hormonal changes. The rise and fall of estrogen and progesterone can affect taste and the sense of smell.

Another theory on food aversion is that the body is protecting your unborn baby from potentially harmful substances.

For example, food that is high in mercury may be repulsive to you during pregnancy, which could, in turn, protect your baby’s development. 

Common Food Aversions During Pregnancy

Meat aversion is common and normal among pregnant women, but some women may have a new distaste for milk, cheese, and yogurt. 

Spicy or strong-flavored foods, coffee, or caffeinated beverages can sometimes be cravings, but for others, they can be repulsive while pregnant. 

Vegetables may also put you off for the time being. 

When Do Food Aversions Start in Pregnancy?

Food aversions commonly start during the first trimester; however, they can start at any time during a pregnancy.

The first trimester is when hormones are changing rapidly, which is why nausea, vomiting, and food aversions may be at their strongest. 

When Do Pregnancy Food Aversions Stop?

Food aversions may stop after the first trimester, but for some women, they may continue throughout the entire pregnancy. The first trimester is typically the height of food aversion and nausea. 

Related Questions: 

Can Cravings Predict Gender?

Cravings are a common occurrence during pregnancy. Some say that certain cravings may predict the baby’s gender.

For example, if you crave sweets, you may be carrying a girl, and salt cravings could mean you will have a boy. However, there is no scientific data that is conclusive for these predictions. 

When Does Smell Sensitivity End in Pregnancy?

Luckily, smell sensitivity typically subsides after the first trimester. It is similar to food aversions in that it is caused by hormonal changes. 

Closing Thoughts 

In conclusion, pregnancy has so many fascinating aspects such as cravings, food aversions, and smell sensitivity.

These do not provide accurate depictions of what your baby’s gender may be, but it may be fun to use these theories to guess!

If you have meat aversions, it is safe to avoid meat, but get in your nutrients and protein in other ways.

It is essential to trust your doctor and listen to their advice and guidance throughout your pregnancy and to refer to them with any questions and concerns.

Ultimately, try to live a healthy lifestyle and take good care of yourself and your growing baby.