Why Do Some People Crave Vinegar During Pregnancy?

In addition to nausea, one of the first signs of morning sickness may be food aversions, per Romper. That's when we grow to detest foods — often those we typically love. Even the thought of the food may make us feel queasy, and the smell of it may send us running out of the room. 

The funny part is that, before pregnancy, we may have thoroughly enjoyed that food on a daily basis. Some of the biggest culprits for food aversions are coffee and meat.

Dr. Marta J. Perez, an OB-GYN, tells Romper, "One of the most dramatic changes early in pregnancy is that estrogen and progesterone go higher than they ever have before. There have been some studies that show taste buds in animals change size and shape during pregnancy."

Then just when you think you've gotten used to the ongoing food aversions, your body adjusts to the influx of hormones, and you suddenly start having food cravings. The foods you crave when pregnant may surprise you, too. Vegans may suddenly crave meat (via Insider). Those with a sweet tooth may not be able to get enough sour flavors. 

Bitter-tasting food is another commonly craved food during pregnancy, and vinegar tops the list of many people's pregnancy cravings. Here's why.

You may crave sour tastes when pregnant

Valerie Duffy, Ph.D., who researched pregnancy cravings, found that hankerings for sour food tend to occur more often in the second and third trimesters, rather than in the first trimester (via Parents). She believes this phenomenon has to do with a woman's body doing its best to supply enough calories for the growing baby.

While vinegar doesn't have many calories, it can be placed on everything, from nutritionally dense salads and protein-packed sandwiches to french fries and chips. The options for vinegar are also varied, so the urge to consume it can lead you to eat a lot of different nutrients that your body needs.

One of the most common pregnancy cravings is pickles. It makes sense because pickles are soaked in brine, which is made up of vinegar, so they satisfy an urge for sour flavors as well as the intense salt craving that is common during pregnancy (via Pregnancy Food Checker).

How vinegar helps during pregnancy

Though vinegar contains no caloric content on its own, it does provide nutrients, including magnesium, potassium, calcium, and phosphorus (via WebMD).

While initial studies are favorable toward apple cider vinegar helping with several pregnancy ailments, more research has to be done to prove the benefits definitely. However, according to Healthlineapple cider vinegar may provide health benefits during pregnancy, such as helping curb common pregnancy discomforts like morning sickness, heartburn, yeast infections, and urinary tract infections.

The reason behind this is the acidity of the vinegar. It may work to curb harmful bacteria in the body while also helping aid natural digestive enzymes (via ABC10).

When consuming vinegar during pregnancy, it's safer to use pasteurized rather than unpasteurized, which may contain harmful bacteria. When you're pregnant, your immune system is compromised, so it's important to always err on the side of caution when it comes to potential food-borne illness.