Congratulations on your pregnancy

Let’s talk about a good pregnancy diet.

Your pregnancy diet does not have to be complicated.  One rule of thumb to follow that I like is to MAKE EVERY CALORIE COUNT!  What that means is, it is better to get 100 calories from a glass of low-fat milk, than from a glass of soda.  Remember you only need roughly 300 extra calories per day when you are pregnant.

A Question many moms want to know is how much weight  should I gain.  You should gain roughly 25 – 35 pounds during your pregnancy, most of it is in the 2nd and 3rd trimesters.  If you are a bit overweight before your pregnancy many experts recommend gaining about 15 to 25 pounds.   If underweight when you started your pregnancy around 28 – 40 pounds.  Always check with your doc for specifics and adjustments to your prenatal needs. Remember;

  • Gaining too much or too little weight during pregnancy can be harmful to you and your baby.
  • Don’t ever try to lose weight during pregnancy unless directed by your physician.

Amount of Weight to Gain based on your BMI Before Pregnancy

UnderweightHealthy WeightOverweightObese
Pregnant with one Baby 28 to 40 pounds25 to 35 pounds15 to 25 pounds11 to 20 pounds
Pregnant with Twins50 to 62 pounds37 to 54 pounds31 to 50 pounds25 to 42 pounds

Quick reference to what you need right now:

Protein – 5 to 7 ounces a day.

Best source for protein is lean meat, poultry and fish, eggs, dairy foods, nuts.

Calcium 1000 mg a day

Best source for calcium is low-fat mil, calcium-fortified soy milk, yogurt, cheese, broccoli, leafy greens.  Guess what, you can get about 900 mg of calcium from three (3) 8-oz glasses of milk.

Omega-3 fatty acids

Best Source is fish (salmon, herring, sardines), vegetable oil, nuts.  Most recommendations are to eat no more than 12 ounces of fish a week so you don’t ingest too much mercury.

Is weight gain important during pregnancy?

Yes. Gaining the right amount of weight during pregnancy can help protect your health and the health of your baby according to the centers for disease control and the March of Dimes.

If you gain too little weight during pregnancy, you’re more likely than other women to have a premature baby or a baby with low birthweight. A premature baby is born too early, before 37 weeks of pregnancy. Low birthweight means your baby is born weighing less than 5 pounds, 8 ounces.

If you gain too much weight during pregnancy, you’re more likely than other women to:

  • Have a premature baby. Premature babies may have health problems at birth and later in life, including being overweight or obese. Being obese means you have an excess amount of body fat.
  • Have a baby with fetal macrosomia. This is when your baby is born weighing more than 8 pounds, 13 ounces. Having a baby this large can cause complications, like problems during labor and heavy bleeding after birth.
  • Need a cesarean birth (also called c-section). This is surgery in which your baby is born through a cut that your health care provider makes in your belly or uterus.
  • Have trouble losing weight after your baby’s birth. This can increase your risk for health conditions like diabetes and high blood pressure.

Folic acid Vitamin B9 rich food

Where do you gain the weight during pregnancy?

If you’re at a healthy weight before pregnancy and gain 30 pounds during pregnancy, here’s where you carry the weight:

  • Baby = 7.5 pounds
  • Amniotic fluid = 2 pounds. Amniotic fluid surrounds the baby in the womb.
  • Blood = 4 pounds
  • Body fluids = 4 pounds
  • Breasts = 2 pounds
  • Fat, protein and other nutrients = 7 pounds
  • Placenta = 1.5 pounds. The placenta grows in your uterus (also called womb) and supplies the baby with food and oxygen through the umbilical cord.
  • Uterus = 2 pounds. The uterus is the place inside you where your baby grows

Pregnancy Treasures