Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Favorite Foods

There doesn't seem to be much rhyme or reason to it, but pregnancy hormones sure change my tastes. It's not as severe as in the first trimester, but even now in the homestretch, I have some definite likes and dislikes that differ from my usual preferences. The only semi-coherent thread I sort of recognize is that there's a tendency to prefer foods I preferred in early childhood. These tend to be more boring, bland foods in the carbohydrate and sugar food groups than I usually eat as an adult.
I hear from friends that tastes return to pre-pregnancy normal after birth. Now that's hard to believe, but I look forward to it. So, for the record, here are some of the funky food things I've been experiencing:

Foods I Normally Love that I Can't Stand Now (or are likely to make me puke if I do)

  • Humus and pita. Thought I could do it on Saturday. Had a bunch and then it was puke-o-rama for the rest of the day.
  • Herbs, particularly basil as in pesto.
  • Baby greens (There may be some biological logic to this one. Lettuce can contain the same bacteria that are safe to adults but toxic to fetuses as can raw meat or cat shit)
  • Salads in general. One exception seems to be my favorite "salat italki" at Sylva Cafe.
  • Pizza!

Foods I Don't Normally Get that Excited About that I Really Enjoy Now

  • Potatoes
  • Oatmeal. I've been eating tons of it.
  • Ice cream. OK, so I always love it, but I can generally resist it pretty well.

Cravings I've Had

Not too many really, and generally not sustained.

  • Potato chips. It was so bad I nearly cried. Good news is that one (small by American standards, large by Israeli standards) bag totally satisfied the urge.
  • Chinese (pork) dumplings. This happened once very early in the pregnancy. It took me an entire day to make them because not only are they naturally time consuming but I had so little energy then and I had to do a bit of research to understand their construction. I approximated an entirely satisfying kosher version using "mizrachi kebab" meat I had in the freezer. The scallions and sesame oil seem to be the magic that really make them taste authentic. What amazes me is how a flour and water based dough "knows" to taste like Chinese dumpling here, Middle Eastern Pita there..
  • Coca-Cola. I'd learned to give it up for Diet Pepsi Max. But diet drinks are definitely OUT for pregnancy. I haven't had a lot of Coke during the pregnancy, but an occasional well-placed glass really offsets the 3rd trimester nausea. I don't think it would have made a dent in the 1st trimester, I don't think I even tried.
  • Lemon juice. As in, the juice of a lemon in cold water, without sugar. Not craving it now, but it helped with nausea in the first trimester. And I just enjoyed it a lot in the second.

Foods I Pretty Much Gave up During the Last 2 Years of Disciplined Dieting that I'm Enjoying Indulging in Now

  • Butter.
  • Nuts.
  • Peanut butter.
  • Fruit.
  • Avocado.
  • Yogurt with a fat % over zero%.

It seems utterly unfair and unreasonable that the baby only requires an additional 300 calories over a woman's normal dietary intake needs. Do you realize how little that is? That's like if I kept my diet the same, only:

  • Instead of the 0% yogurt I usually have (46 calories), switch to a 3% yogurt of the same size (160 calories)
  • Eat one "milky" pudding snack (160 calories).
  • Add one (small) pad of butter to something to make up the additional few calories.

Of course, that assumes that I'm able to eat the same diet I was eating before which consisted of mountains of raw vegetables, lots of 5% cheeses, and very controlled quantities of (mostly diet) bread, fueled by pretty serious consumption of diet cola. Um, I'm not. No way. Can't do that now. The vegetables are tough. The diet products are impossible. And portion control is pretty much regulated by what Cholent demands or rejects.
SO, I accept that I'll have some work ahead of me to return to pre-prego weight. But hopefully it will be a lot easier when I get my old taste buds back!


Anonymous said...

I don't care what you're eating - you look fabulous!

Anonymous said...

With my first pregnancy I craved avocado big time.
Then came wanting nuts, peanut butter and cereal, as in crunchy wholesome sounding dry cereal that still was loaded with sugar, despite the wholsome ingredients displayed proudly on the front of the box...
Second pregnancy I just wanted junk; I'm not so sure it was a craving [insert emoticon w/ rolling eyes here]...
I think that I didn't crave nuts & avovado because my prenatal viatamin the second time around was chock full of fish oil, so my hypothesis is that I was getting enough fatty omega whatnots so I didn't need to crave them...
As for oatmeal, it's good for your milk supply- so you'll be set to go!