Thursday, September 13, 2012

Fruit and babies: size matters

Most sources of pregnancy info use fruit sizes to explain to you how big your unborn child is. I think they do it in case pregnancy renders you incapable of understanding inches or centimetres.

As it happens my spatial reasoning is poorer than ever just lately, so I find the fruit analogy useful. This graphic list from is a good example.

But check your source before you start picturing your fruity baby. For example, at week 9, an American fetus is the size of a grape. Now I know that American grapes can be enormous. An English baby at that stage would be better described as the size of an English apricot, I think. Or perhaps a little greengage.

What's more, US sites have the baby at a fig size in week 11, and a lime in week 12. In the US, figs are small - smaller than limes even. But by European fruit sizes that means a dramatically shrinking baby.
On the left, an 11wk fetus. On the right, a 12 week fetus.

Maybe it's safer, after all, to stick to inches and centimetres. Even for my poor pregnancy-addled mind.


  1. "pregnancy-addled mind" - looking forward to sharing that one with the missus. congrats by the way. p.s. phoebe was just short of 9lbs a fortnight early so she was probably a decent size quince at this stage.

  2. Congrats! Interesting how the fruit metaphors tail off around the 20 week stage. No-one wants to be told they're going to give birth to a pineapple, watermelon, etc...

  3. Personally I was the stupidest pregnant woman ever. Just saying.