Can The Way You Carry Reveal The Sex Of Your Baby?

During pregnancy, you'll likely hear a lot of old wives' tales, often around predicting the sex of the baby. Johns Hopkins All Children's Hospital points out that with modern-day science and technology, many of these tales have been debunked, yet they continue to circulate.

For parents who are anxious to find out the sex of their baby but have to wait for a blood test or ultrasound to confirm, it can be fun to explore these old wives' tales and see how many of them, if any, ring true at the moment of discovery.

One of the most popular old wives' tales to predict sex is the rhythm of the baby's heartbeat, according to WebMD. This one states that if the heartbeat measures above 140 beats per minute, the baby will be a girl. While differences in heart rate do become more pronounced toward the end of the third trimester, in the first trimester when parents are still in the dark about the sex of the baby, this is far from a reliable way to predict sex.

Another sex-predicting tale has to do with pregnancy cravings. Some people believe that if you crave sweet foods, you can expect a girl, whereas sour cravings indicate a boy. Again, there is no scientific basis to this one.

Finally, we have the old wives' tale that sex can be predicted by the way the pregnant person carries the baby, adds WebMD. If you're wondering whether this is true, we have an answer for you.

The way you carry the baby likely won't do much to indicate sex

You may have already heard that the position in which you carry the baby during pregnancy can indicate their sex. The tale has it that carrying the baby low means you'll be welcoming a boy in a few short months, explains Self. Alternatively, a bump higher up would mean you're having a girl.

Self spoke with reproductive endocrinologist Leo Doherty to determine if there's any truth behind this particular old wives' tale. He wasn't one to mince words: "There's no scientific proof or study that says [the sex of a baby] influences the way somebody carries," he told the publication. 

Additionally, there are many reasons why a pregnant person might carry the baby higher or lower. For starters, a baby in the breech position with their head underneath the ribcage may push the bump higher up the abdomen, while a baby with their head pointed down may keep that bump lower. The strength of the abdominal muscles and the length of the torso also play a role.

Ultimately, it's best to rely on current technology to determine your baby's sex, instead of trusting old wives' tales. Healthline explains that you can opt for a blood test after 10 weeks gestation. These tests determine sex based on chromosomes. Alternatively, an ultrasound between 18 and 21 weeks gestation can identify the sex by examining the genitals.