How to manage your hunger cravings during pregnancy?

When announcing our pregnancy, we hear our grandmothers say: "Eat more dear, now you're eating for two!"  Is it true?

Yes it's normal to have a larger appetite because energy needs increase with each trimester. But no, our energy needs don't double. It's important to choose the appropriate quality and quantity of food consumed to better manage food cravings that can occur during these nine months!

If you maintain the same level of physical activity as before pregnancy, your energy needs generally increase by 100 kcals during the first trimester, by 350 kcals during the second and 450 kcals, total, in the third trimester. It is possible to meet this increase energy need with more substantial snacks or somewhat larger meals. However, some women experience early satiety and a compressed stomach especially during the last trimester, so it's best to spread out meals and snacks during the day and avoid drinking before or during the meal.

Many women have specific cravings, for acidic foods such as pickles, citrus and green grapes or for sweet or salty foods such as ice cream, chocolate or chips. Less nutritious foods don't need to be eliminated from your diet, but settle for a reasonable amount! They shouldn't take the place of other, more health foods!

Here are some healthy alternatives to everyday cravings


  • A piece of dark chocolate after a meal
  • Fruits in all their forms. Add them to yogurts, puddings, and muffins, soften them up in the microwave, drizzled with a little maple syrup and topped with nuts.
  • Chocolate milk or flavoured soy beverages are also good choices after physical activity.
  • Milk, frozen yogurts and sorbet


  • Soybeans, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, etc.
  • Spicy roasted chick peas or edamame with a pinch of salt
  • Low fat cottage cheese
  • Rice cakes and crackers, toasted pita bread brushed with pesto


  • Cravings for greasy foods can come from a need to eat heavier or more substantial dishes. Make yourself mashed potatoes; add parsnips, sweet potatoes and a little butter, cream or cheese for a creamy texture.
  • Dips made from yogurt, fresh cheese (such as quark) or sour cream can be stretched out to serve as sauces or dressings.
  • Homemade baked French fries. Sweet potatoes are also excellent.
  • Pitas and tortillas accompanied by hummus or cheese.



Elise Hofer

Mother of two, Elise Hofer is an accomplished sportswoman in alpine skiing, cycling and running. She holds a Bachelor of Management Degree and promotes an active lifestyle by getting involved with top athletes in the organization of corporate hiking and in various foundations.

Mélanie Olivier

Sports dietician-nutritionist, Melanie Olivier is a former elite skier. Her work with many athletes led her to accompany the Canadian delegation at the Olympic games in 2006, 2008 an 2010. In addition to leading her own nutrition team of experts, Melanie is an experienced lecturer and trainer as well as an appreciated media collaborator.

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