A birthmark is any mark present on the skin at birth, or that develops soon afterwards. Birthmarks may be red, blue, brown, white or skin coloured, depending on the cells involved. Different birthmarks include ‘stork bite’ marks, Mongolian spots, strawberry marks, café au lait spots, port wine stain and congenital melanocytic naevus.
People in several countries believe that birthmarks happen when pregnant women ignore their food cravings.
During pregnancy, if you have a food craving, and you don’t fulfill that craving, and you scratch yourself, your child will be born with a beauty mark in the shape of the food you were craving. The mark would appear, naturally, on the part of the body the woman scratches.
Another belief states that if a pregnant woman touches her belly during an eclipse, her baby will have a birthmark. Also, if a pregnant woman craves for a particular food and touches her womb, her baby will have a birthmark.
The old wives’ tales have left their own mark on many different cultures. In several languages, including Italian and Spanish, the word for birthmark means “cravings.” In Dutch and Danish, the term includes the word “mother,” suggesting that only one parent could be responsible for the spots.
Birthmarks, in French, are called “Taches D envie” which mean literally means “due to cravings”!