"I thought I was pregnant. But it was all down to my afternoon snack."

Image via iStock.

I grabbed my partner’s hand the other day and forced it onto my belly.

“It feels weird,” I declared. “It’s all hard.”

Distracted, he laid his palm across the previously-rather-flat area now bulging against the waistband of my jeans and there it was, sitting below my belly button: A hardness.

A rounded hardness that could only be described as – a bump.

My hip bones, usually easily discernible by touch, if not by sight, were obscured by the strange new weight, a fullness I’d only ever seen on my older cousins.

Panic briefly flashed across my boyfriend’s face and he immediately leapt on his smartphone to Google the symptoms he hoped I’d instantly dismiss. (Post continues after gallery.)

“Bloating,” he read. I nodded.

“Sore boobs. Weight gain…” he reeled off. I nodded.

“Constipation…?” he gingerly queried.

I redded—but paled at the same time. Because there was no two ways about it: I was displaying symptoms normally associated with early pregnancy—and a baby was certainly not in our five-year plan.

While my partner tried to soothe me, I insisted we take a test before we began to panic. My ashen-faced partner sprinted to the nearby pharmacy and returned with the most accurate pregnancy test money can buy in inner-city Sydney at 7am.

And the result was…

Baffling. (Post continues after video.)

Because the test was negative, but there I was—presenting with a discernible belly that wouldn’t be out of place in the second trimester.

On the one hand, it was a relief. On the other hand I was a little irritated (and frankly felt rather betrayed by the womanly instinct I had, for all of five minutes, been sure I’d become finely attuned to.)

Pulling on a shapeless jumper to hide my now mysteriously rounded belly, I turned up to work, began to go about my business, and found myself hungry.

Wondering if it was another phantom pregnancy symptom, I reached automatically into my handbag for my favourite snack. And then it hit me: the bag of almonds before me was half-empty, even though I’d only brought it the day before. (Post continues after gallery.)


I’d been consuming lots of almonds, I realised. Lots and lots and lots of almonds, many times a day, whenever I was looking for something to absent-mindedly pick at work.

I googled the side-effects of too many almonds, and lo and behold, here’s what I found:

Weight gain. Bloating. Constipation. Other gastrointestinal problems due to the high levels of fiber that your body may not be used to ingesting.

Almonds have loads of health benefits, but there is always too much of a good thing. (Image via iStock.)

As for the sore boobs? I guess that was a touch of PMS (which explains my hunger, too.)

So, there you have it. A small handful of almonds a day, can apparently help prevent diabetes, cancer-cell growth and Alzheimers  and can actually assist with weight loss.

But as I learned the hard way. You can have too much of a good thing.

 Do you suffer from bloating?