Baby Gender Prediction
July 05, 2024

The Charm of Tradition: Old Wives’ Tales for Baby Gender Predictions

When expecting a new addition to the family, one of the most exciting questions is: "Is it a  boy or a girl?" While modern science provides methods like ultrasounds and DNA tests for accurate predictions, many cultures still enjoy speculating based on old wives' tales. These tales, passed down through generations, add a fun and often amusing element to pregnancy. They range from observing the shape of a mother's belly to predicting based on food cravings. Although these methods aren't scientifically proven, they offer a delightful peek into cultural traditions and the human love for guessing games. 

What is an Old Wives' Tale? 

Old wives' tales are traditional beliefs and superstitions passed down through generations, often concerning health, pregnancy, weather, and everyday life. These tales are typically rooted in folklore and are not supported by scientific evidence. Still, they remain popular due to their cultural significance and the comfort they provide in offering explanations for the unknown. In many cultures, old wives' tales, specifically about pregnancy and baby gender prediction, are especially cherished, as they add an element of fun and anticipation to the journey of expecting parents. While they should be taken with a pinch of salt, these tales are a delightful part of cultural heritage, reflecting the wisdom and the whimsical thinking of earlier times. 

How do these Tales Predict Gender? 

Heart Rate Predictions 

One of the most popular tales revolves around the baby's heart rate. If the infant's heart rate exceeds 140 beats per minute, the baby is probably a girl; if it falls below, the baby is probably a boy. This belief has charmed many expectant parents, prompting them to listen keenly during prenatal checkups. However, medical research suggests that there's no significant correlation between heart rate and the baby's gender. The heart rate of a fetus can vary based on numerous factors, including the baby's age and the mother's activity level.

Shape and Position of the Belly 

Another widespread belief is that the shape and position of the expecting mother's belly can indicate the baby's gender. It's often said that a high, round belly signals a girl, while a low, outward-extended belly suggests a boy. This tale provokes much conversation, with family and friends often making predictions based on the mother's profile view. Despite its popularity, the shape of a woman's belly is influenced more by factors like muscle structure, the baby's position, and previous pregnancies than by the baby's gender. 

Cravings and Food Preferences

Have you ever heard someone say that craving sweets means you're having a girl, or a penchant for salty and sour foods indicates a boy? These tales are among the favorites in baby showers and family gatherings. Theories suggest these cravings could be linked to hormonal changes or nutritional needs during pregnancy. Yet, like many other old wives' tales, there is no scientific backing to firmly connect specific cravings with the baby's gender. 

Morning Sickness Severity 

The severity of morning sickness has also been tied to baby gender predictions. The tale goes that if you experience severe morning sickness, you are likely to be carrying a girl. However, morning sickness is a complex condition influenced by numerous physiological factors, and its severity can vary widely among different pregnancies, regardless of the baby's gender. 

The Ring Test 

The ring test is a fun and interactive prediction method. The tale instructs you to tie a ring to a string and dangle it over the pregnant belly. According to legend, if the ring swings in a circular motion, it indicates a girl; if it swings back and forth, it is a boy. This test often serves as a delightful party trick, though its results are based on random motion rather than any physiological indicators. 

Chinese Gender Prediction Chart 

The Chinese gender prediction chart is said to determine the baby's gender based on the lunar age of the mother at conception and the lunar month in which the baby was conceived. This ancient chart has intrigued many for its historical value and the mystery surrounding its accuracy. Although it's fun to check, its predictions are considered coincidental rather than factual. 

Other Miscellaneous Tales 

There are numerous other lesser-known tales such as the garlic test—if a woman doesn't smell like garlic after eating it, she's having a girl—or the direction a mother sleeps in, with a preference for sleeping on the left suggesting a boy. Another curious tale involves mixing Drano with urine; the resulting colour is said to predict gender. While these methods are scientifically unfounded, they add an element of mystery and excitement to the waiting months. 


Engaging with old wives' tales can be a joyful part of the pregnancy experience, offering a light-hearted way to connect with cultural traditions and community folklore. However, it's important to remember that the health of the baby and the mother is paramount, and the baby's gender, whether a boy or a girl, is ultimately a wonderful surprise. These tales are best enjoyed as part of the excitement and mystery that envelops the incredible journey of pregnancy. 


How to know that your expectant baby is a boy? 

According to old wives' tales, certain changes in a mother's facial appearance might hint at the gender of the baby. It is believed that if a woman's face becomes rounder and slightly rosy during pregnancy, she is likely to have a boy. Additionally, if her overall beauty appears to be enhanced—characterized by a glowing complexion and a healthier look—folklore suggests that she will have a son. The tales say that a boy tends to "add to the mother's beauty." 

How Can You Determine if You're Expecting a Baby Girl? 

According to old wives' tales, having severe morning sickness, craving sweets, experiencing heightened mood swings, noticing a faster fetal heart rate (above 140 beats per minute), and observing changes in skin condition like increased acne are signs the woman is having a girl. 

Do you gain more weight carrying a boy or a girl? 

There is no scientific evidence to support that weight gain in pregnancy is affected by the gender of the baby. Weight gain during pregnancy can vary widely from one person to another and is influenced by factors such as the mother's body type, diet, overall health, and how she carries the pregnancy. Some old wives' tales suggest that carrying a boy leads to less weight gain around the hips and thighs compared to carrying a girl, but these tales are anecdotal and not supported by scientific research. It's best to focus on maintaining a healthy pregnancy through proper nutrition and care as advised by a healthcare provider. 

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