How to Tell if you are Pregnant with a Boy or a Girl…

This is extremely fascinating stuff. The Motherlode Blog featured these findings from the newly-released book Origins: How the 9 Months before Birth Shape the Rest of our Lives by Annie Murphy Paul. Listen to this:

1. Boy Pregnancy vs. Girl Pregnancy Rule #1 = Girl Pregnancies mean more nausea

“Women who are pregnant with girls may indeed experience more nausea. … Several large investigations have found that women afflicted with severe morning sickness, called hyperemesis gravidarum, in the first trimester are more likely to be carrying a female fetus. Doctors, concluded one study, “can say with confidence to a woman who has hyperemesis gravidarum that she has a 55.7 percent chance of delivering a girl.” The sicker she is, the more likely this is to be true: a 2004 study by epidemiologists at the University of Washington found that women who were extremely ill — hospitalized for three days or more — had odds of having a girl that were 80 percent higher than those of women who did not experience severe nausea. A hormone called human chorionic gonadotropin may be to blame: female fetuses produce more of it than males.”

2. Rule #2= During Boy Pregnancies Moms-to-Be Eat More

Obstetricians have long known that boy babies tend to be bigger than girl babies at birth, by an average of 3.5 ounces. But they weren’t sure how this difference came about. A 2003 study tracked the diets of more than 300 women receiving prenatal care at Beth Israel Hospital in Boston. Women who were pregnant with boys consumed about 10 percent more calories than those who were pregnant with girls — more protein, more carbohydrates, and more fats, adding up to about 200 extra calories per day. Testosterone secreted by fetal testicles, the researchers speculate, could be sending mothers a signal to eat more. (Another possibility occurs to me: perhaps women who learn they’re carrying male fetuses are already obeying the cultural dictate to feed growing boys.)

Rule #3 = If you Have a Feeling that you’re having a boy or a girl, you’re probably right…

… one small but intriguing study found that, “contrary to expectations,” women who rely on dreams and emotions to guess their babies’ sex have a surprisingly good chance of being correct. Among a group of 45 well-educated pregnant women — all of whom had chosen not to learn fetal sex from prenatal tests — 17 said they had a “feeling” about whether their fetus was male or female, and 13 were right. Eight of the women reported having a dream about their fetus’s sex, and every single one of them was on the money. “It is always possible that this was a spurious finding,” acknowledged the authors, from Johns Hopkins University in Maryland. “It is equally likely that there is simply much about the maternal-fetal connection that we do not know.”

JewishMOMs what do you think of these 3 “rules”? I agree with the nausea one. I was less nauseous with my one boy pregnancy. But I think I actually ate less and gained less weight when I was pregnant with him than with my girls when I generally totally blimped out…Do these findings sound accurate to you?

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16 comments

  1. I have had HG with all 3 pregnancies and it was worst with my boys (by far!) I ate the least and weighed the least during my last boy pregnancy. And I am never right in what I think I am having. 3 for 3 wrong for me lol

  2. I vomited with the girls and had nausea without vomiting with the boys. And I was always accurate with my feeling: until my last pregnancy when I had a reason to want one gender over the other. Then I had the symptoms and gut feeling of the gender I wanted because I wanted it so badly, but that wasn’t what the baby was, it was what my mind wanted!
    So I think these rules are only true most of the time (in my case, 4/5)!

  3. I don’t know about girl pregnancies because i have only boys.
    The first time i was 100% positive i would have a boy (i kept preparing myself psychologically not to be disapointed if it was a girl!), an dthe second time even though i very much wanted a girl i had a feeling it was a boy – so i wasn’t surprised when he was born…

  4. I had hyperemesis during my pregnancy with my son. My midwife did tell me (and your post reflects) that the odds are greater for a girl if you have hyperemesis, but it’s not proof-positive.

  5. can’t say that any of the bubbe-maasehs or the doctors’ studies were right for me.
    i was told that hairy babies caused heartburn. all 10 of my babies were basically bald and i suffered terrible heartburn.
    i was told that girl babies caused more nausea. i had nausea with the last 7 pregnancies, and the first two were a girl and a boy.
    i was told that since i would gain more weight with a boy, but only gained “water weight” with the second pregnancy (a boy). after that, i got compression stockings and i didn’t gain much with the following pregnancies (two boys and 6 girls). then again, i had such horrible heartburn that i could barely eat anything anyway….
    as for dreams, i had definite feelings about two of my pregnancies. i dreamed about having a boy twice. both times, one of my grandmothers passed away while i was in the third trimester, and i ended up having girls……..you may draw your own conclusions…

  6. the studies are interesting, but obviously not so telling. for example, a woman with hyperemesis has a 55.7% of having a girl, which means also a pretty big chance of having a boy! the difference is so slight that you really cant tell…

    with each pregnancy i am nauceous/vomiting (not as bad as hyperemisis though), but interestingly crave something different which i honestly think has a relationship with the childs’ personality: for example goat cheese (he is now very connected to nature and animals), jalapenos (her gannenet named her pilpel because of her fiery personality), and red meat (we will see about this one!)

  7. I have a very intereting story: on my first pregnancey I had a feeling I will have a girl. I knew my huband’s family wanted us to have a boy to they can have “Pidion haben”. (3 previously married siblings had girls first)
    So I davined for a boy – and my inner feeling completely changed. From then I was sure I had a boy
    End of story: I had a boy, but it was a cesarian – so no Pidion for us…

    BTW – in the following pregnancies I knew what I would have both times. sort of an inner feeling.

  8. Whatever, it’s lots of fun! And what do the studies say about israeli passers-by, you know, the ones that say: oh, you are going to have a boy/girl (and then you get the pregnancy history until the light changes/till opens/order of felafel finally arrives….

    For what it’s scientifically worth, I craved avocados with one boy, ices with my girl, and chocolate for all of them!!!

    :-) )

  9. I’ve also heard shape-of-the-tummy predictions, skin breakout predictions, amount of kicking predictions for gender–almost always wrong. That’s statistically significant, actually, because statistically they should have been right about half the time!

  10. I have had 2 girls one is 13 the other is 7 with both girls I had nausea and more than 40 pound weight gain. This time I am pregnant with a boy and I never had nausea I feel and look great and at only 23 weeks pregnant i have only gained 7pounds. I do like protein cheese salty and sour founds sweets on occasion but not always.

  11. i have 2 girls felt sick before i even knew i was pregnant
    was sick all the way through to the day i had my first daughter and had sickness for 3 months with my second,
    craved any thing strawberry flavour and hated chicken with my first and loved any think cheese with my second and hated tea,
    i had 2 losses also, with one i had v little sickness(my appendix burst and caused the loss)my second i was really sick and took anti sickness meds (which i think could have played a part) i knew with my second she was going to be a girl i kept looking at pink and thought aww i would love another girl and she was!! did not have a clue with my first though, i am 6 weeks pregnant again and this time i feel more emotional so moody and tired and have a weard warm sensation down below sorry if thats tmi!!never had this before! i like salty food,sanwiches and bacon i have had no sickness what so ever yet,a boy would be lovely fingers crossed all will go ok with what ever baba is oh and the tests i have done are very dark positives :-)

  12. mrs contreras

    I have two girl already didn’t have morning sickness with them only heartburn im about five weeks pregnant now an ive never felt this sick in my life I really want a boy this time an im praying that it is

  13. Anusuya

    i have vomiting and urine can passed thick yellow be comes.i have tired in the morning times.so what baby boy or girl say.

  14. I have twin boys I was sick in the morning with them now I’m pregnant now and now feeling great.

  15. I have 2 boys never had m/s with them felt great and craved steak mainly country big meals. Now im 7 wks sick everyday all day. Can hardly keep foid or drinks down heartburn is horrible i have thay a lot too hoping to feel better. I have a feeling its a girl i knew with my boys at only a few wks just a inner feeling i hope im right with her too.<3 :)

  16. I have 7 living children, 5 boys and 2 girls. I am pregnant with my 8th (dont know the sex but had dreams about both/dad dreamed about a boy). I didnt have nausea with my daughters but had all day sickness with 3 of my boys and this baby. My sons were all 8 pounds and and over except the last one.

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