Can A Baby Feel Hunger In The Womb? Fetal Response!

Written by Daisy
Last updated:
Reviewed by Margaret

Can a baby feel hunger in the womb? Let’s delve into the fascinating question of whether babies can feel hunger during their time in the womb.

Most expectants follow and believe that it’s imaginable for a baby to feel hunger in the womb; is it really true and possible? Can your little angel really feel the hunger you’re feeling as a mother?

To tell you the truth, no, the baby inside your tummy won’t feel hungry! Studies and reports about the possibility of them getting hungry have been found because the umbilical cord still acts as the natural means of them absorbing vitamins and nutrients.

Right before diving into it even further, let us first juggle through and understand the sensation of hunger in both mothers and babies, as well as how it’s connected to during their experience inside the womb.

The website’s general material is given for informative purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. This article has been reviewed by the necessary medical and healthcare professionals and departments that we work with. For emergencies, contact your local physician or certified healthcare provider RIGHT AWAY!

Why Is It Important to Understand the Nutrition of Fetuses Inside the Womb? 

It’s common for us to think that a baby inside their mother’s womb experiences hunger the same way adults do. However, that is not always what the case is. And so, understanding consumption, nutrition, and development inside the womb is crucial.

Some concrete factors that discuss the importance and relevance of understanding it encompass certain avenues. The more you understand fetus nutrition, you’ll be able to dig deeper to:

  • Optimal Development
  • Long-Term Health Directions and Outcomes
  • Brain Development
  • The Health of the Mother

How Are Nutrients Delivered to Your Baby in the Womb?

From taking a standpoint or an angle on why it’s important and relevant, the next thing that you want to wrap your head around on would be the process of how it’s done.

4 U Pharma says that babies inside the wombs usually get their vitamins and nutrients from their mothers – specifically from their cell structures.

             The body needs all the vitamins, minerals, and nutrients it takes in to develop the cells that make up its skin, muscles, bones, blood, hair, and brain as well as to maintain vital systems like the immune system. Consequently, what you consume builds you. Your infant is also.”

How Do Babies Inside the Womb Respond to Nutrition? 

Babies inside their mom’s womb typically respond to nutrition (good or bad) by development. You see, as humans, what we eat contributes so much to how we develop – and so do our babies.

We’re talking about development of all kinds – physical, mental, and emotional.

Harvard University wrote a blog about some research they’ve done had with pregnancy in connection to a mother’s diet and nutrition. They’re saying that even before the development of the fetus, the response of the zygote to from a mother’s diet is crucial and has long-term effects when they develop.

Can My Baby Feel Hunger in the Womb? Hidden Truths!

So, can your baby feel some type of hunger while they’re inside the womb? The answer is no, they don’t! Researchers point toward the fact that fetuses or your little angels resting inside your wombs receive and accept all nutrients, vitamins, and nutrition from the mother via their umbilical cords and the placenta.

You can think of it as an unlimited supply of food from the placenta – and the placenta is developing and enhance enhancing depending on what the mother consumes!

When Does Baby Start Absorbing Nutrients From Mother?

A baby or a fetus would start to absorb the nutrients and vitamins from their mothers about three to five days after they’ve been conceived. During this time, the endometrium will be the primary source of nutrition up to eight to 12 weeks – until the placenta’s maternal blood supply is done and accomplished.

From then on, your little munchkin will be taking whatever they need from the placenta as well.

What Are the Effects on the Baby When the Mother is Hungry?

Being hungry, as a mother with a baby inside your belly is not something that’s actually viewed as “dangerous” or “risky.” Instead, what’s risky and complicated about it is the nutrition of the baby.

We’re not saying that it’s going to be common, but the risks involved of a mother sustaining hours of hunger may lead to:

Slowed Down Growth

The development of the unborn child can be hampered if a pregnant woman has hunger and doesn’t eat enough food. Lack of nourishment deprives the infant of vital nutrients necessary for growth and development, which may result in slower growth and smaller size.

Pre-Term Birth Risk

Preterm delivery, in which the baby is born before the full term, is another risk factor for hunger throughout pregnancy. Premature infants could experience developmental obstacles and might need specific medical care.

Low Birth Weight

Low birth weight in newborns can be caused by inadequate nutrition brought on by maternal hunger. Developmental delays and a higher risk of health issues are frequently linked to low birth weight.

Compromised Immune System

A hungry mother may find it difficult to provide the baby the nourishment it needs to boost its immune system. The infant’s immune system may be compromised as a result, leaving them more vulnerable to infections, diseases, and other health problems.

Issues That Might Affect Cognition and Behavior

Last but most definitely not least would be prenatal malnutrition. It can raise a child’s risk of developing cognitive and behavioral problems. Hunger can hinder the development of crucial neural connections in the baby’s developing brain, which could result in learning problems and behavioral issues.

Can A Baby Reject Food in the Womb?

No, they can’t. In fact, they’ll only be able to develop taste preferences in the first trimester of their mother’s pregnancy. The food that passes through the mother is taken to the bloodstream, into the amniotic fluid.

Pregnant and Always Hungry: Boy or Girl?

There is no scientific evidence that points towards conceiving a boy or a girl through the hunger of the mother. In fact, the National Childbirth Trust said that cravings and a mother being always hungry can determine the specifics of what a body needs – as it can depend on what the cravings are, but it can’t be a predictor of sex or gender.

This goes to show that the only “real” way of predicting and determining the gender or sex of that little angel inside a womb would be through testing.

Do Babies Get Scared in the Womb?

Being scared is actually objective – it’s something that everyone experiences, yes, but to different extents. Babies experience something like how we adults would in a 4D environment.

In short, they experience emotions, sounds, and sight. The Journal of Trauma and Dissociation said that mood swings and changes can impact babies during pregnancy. So, as mothers, we need to make sure that we always have a positive mood as your baby will feel it inside of you.


If you still have questions, check these commonly asked questions out and see if what you’re looking for is here!

When I’m Hungry, is My Baby Hungry Too? 

No, a mother’s hunger is not entirely connected to their babies’. This is the case because everything in the baby, vitamins and nutrition-wise comes from the mother. They absorb it via the placenta.

How Do I Know If My Baby is Hungry? 

Babies don’t get hungry inside the belly of their mothers. However, for newborn babies, you’ll notice them growing hungrier when they move their fists to their mouths, look for the breast to feed on, become somehow agitated or alert, sucking on fingers and hands, or closing and opening their mouths.

Why Do Babies Kick When You Eat?

It is entirely common for a pregnant woman to notice their little munchkin to be more active at specific times during the day – particularly during and/or after eating a meal. The reason for this is that the baby is detecting food that are high in sugar content.

Does Movement In The Womb Increase Around Mealtime?

Yes, but that’s not the only time when a baby moves more. In fact, babies are also energetic and locomotive when their mothers are hungry as it signifies the low sugar level of the mother (and the baby); it is the same after a meal or when the mother is full.

Final Verdict

It’s really something we should all be aware of, especially for first-time parents. The next time you stop and think to yourself, can my baby feel hunger in the womb? You can always go back to how fetuses and babies absorb nutrients, as well as how mothers approach that situation.

In simpler terms, you can always revert to this guide for further guidance and assistance! 

Photo of author
Daisy Martinez, a Certified Financial Planner and mother of two, blends finance expertise from Ohio State and Anderson School of Management with hands-on parenting insights. Founder of "" and "", she's passionate about guiding parents in financial and parenting realms.

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