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How Much Weight Should You Really Gain While Pregnant?

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How Much Weight Should You Really Gain While Pregnant?
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One of the most important things about being pregnant is eating a healthy, well-balanced diet. This is the best way to make sure that your baby gets all the nutrients that they need in order to grow at a healthy weigh. However, knowing exactly the amount of weight that you should gain while you’re pregnant can be a difficult thing to understand.

It is often said that women who are pregnant are eating for two. However, most women who are pregnant typically should only eat about 300 additional calories each day in order to gain the correct amount of weight while she is pregnant. When you find that you are pregnant, it is suggested that you gain 2 to 4 pounds throughout the first three months of your pregnancy and a pound a week for the remainder.

1. Where is the Weight Hidden?

When a woman is pregnant, she will typically gain about 25 to 35 pounds throughout the length of her pregnancy. For many, this seems like a lot of weight, but it is important to understand where this additional weight goes while a woman is pregnant. For example, the baby can be expected to weigh around 8 pounds and 2 to 3 pounds will be taken by the placenta.

it-is-important-to-understand-where-this-additional-weight-goes-while-a-woman-is-pregnantAdditionally, the amniotic fluid and the breast tissue make up an additional 2 to 3 pounds each and there is a 4 pound increase due to the additional blood supply. There is also 2 to 5 pounds that is held in the uterus as well as about 10 pounds of extra fat that is stored for the delivery and breast-feeding process.

2. Can I Lose Weight While Pregnant?

It is important to understand that pregnancy typically requires that a woman gains weight while she is growing her baby. However, there are some instances when a doctor may prefer that a woman loses weight while she is pregnant instead. This should only be done under the care of your doctor and is typically reserved for women who are excessively overweight.

there-are-some-instances-when-a-doctor-may-prefer-that-a-woman-loses-weight-while-she-is-pregnant-insteadIt is very important that you not try to lose weight or diet while you are pregnant unless you have been instructed to do so by your doctor.

3. How Do I Gain the Right Amount Weight?

At times, especially early on in your pregnancy, it may seem that adding additional weight may be difficult due to morning sickness. However, there are some ways that you can help ease your morning sickness symptoms and gain the proper weight that your healthcare provider has suggested.

there-are-some-ways-that-you-can-help-ease-your-morning-sickness-symptoms-and-gain-the-proper-weight-that-your-healthcare-provider-has-suggestedFor example, you should try to eat five or six small meals each day rather than larger meals. In between meals, you should always make sure that you have snacks, such as nuts, cheese and crackers, or yogurt that you can eat at a moment’s notice. Peanut butter is also an excellent source of protein and can be easily spread on toast, crackers, or fruits and vegetables.

4. Can I Gain Too Much Weight?

Many women find that they have gained too much weight while they are pregnant. If you find yourself in this situation you should talk to your doctor about the best ways to lose the weight. However, it will probably be suggested that you wait until after you deliver to begin trying to lose the weight that you gain while you are pregnant.

Many-women-find-that-they-have-gained-too-much-weight-while-they-are-pregnantGaining too much weight while you are pregnant can cause additional health problems for your child. In order to avoid this, you should stay away from unhealthy things when preparing your meals, such as fast food, whole milk products, and sweets or sugary drinks.

You can also keep from gaining too much weight by cooking food in healthy manners, such as baking, broiling, or grilling rather than frying foods as you normally would. You can also talk to your doctor about getting a healthy amount of exercise while you are pregnant as well.

5. Conclusion

Gaining weight while you are pregnant is something that is expected and common. However, it is also something that you should do as instructed by your doctor. It is important that you keep a watchful eye on your weight while you are pregnant and make sure that you are gaining the correct amount of weight without gaining too much of it. This is the best way to protect the health of both you and your unborn child.



Dr. Karen Leham is double board-certified in Obstetrics and Gynecology and in Reproductive Endocronology and Infertility. Dr. Leham completed her residency at Loyola University, followed by a fellowship at UCLA.

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