Pickles & Ice Cream

What do french fries, honey mustard, applesauce, cheese stuffed pretzels, sauerkraut, pickle juice, peanut butter and pineapples have in common? Go on…think about it for a moment…it’s a puzzler…unless, of course, you’re pregnant. Yep, these are some of the “crazy” things different women have craved during pregnancy. And interestingly enough, the women surveyed gladly “gave in” to these cravings.

I find it fascinating how many of these same women regularly deny themselves specific foods or allow themselves only controlled the amounts of certain foods based on information provided by external “expert” sources of “authority.” They will follow a no carb diet, some special plan of food combinations or shoot themselves up with hormones to achieve or maintain a desired body shape and size – regardless of what their bodies have to say about it.

But when they get pregnant, all the “rules” fly out the window. Pregnancy somehow gives women permission to trust their bodies – even if they don’t recognize that this is what they are doing. Because that new little bundle of joy is the most precious thing in the world, women will protect it with their life. Women will – for a short time – surrender their own food drama for the benefit of their baby. Food becomes less fearful partly because weight-gain is expected with pregnancy. And women will suddenly start to listen to their bodies’ cravings and eat things they never would have considered eating before because “the baby wants it.”

But the “baby” that “wants it” is really the mother’s body. And by listening to and responding to the forthcoming requests, the mother is supporting her own needs as well as those of her baby.

But what happens once the baby is born? For a short time, depending on whether or not the mother chooses to breast feed, many women stay conscious of what they are eating for the sake of the baby. But most women quickly go back to ignoring the messages from their own bodies. Part of that over-ride is understandable – especially when the baby has yet to sleep through a night and the mother still has things she must do during the day. But most of the body’s messages fall on deaf ears because that baby weight has to come off.

So once again, the focus becomes on the external rules to get a result rather than on the wisdom and wishes of the body. I find that interesting because these women now have physical proof of the miracle that is their own body – it just helped create a new life! But now suddenly somehow this body – that just carried and bore a child – does not know what it wants and needs to be in an optimized state of health, beauty and vitality??

So whether you’re a man or a woman, whether you have children or not, whether you want children or not, I encourage you to listen to and respond to the messages that come from your body as if they are coming from the most precious and wise being in the world – because they really are.