Weight gain is a big issue on the minds of many pregnant women. What is too little or what is too much? We found a good article with straight forward guidelines given by the Mayo Clinic staff:
Pregnancy weight gain: What's healthy?
Like it or not, pregnancy weight gain is inevitable. Your baby's growth and development depend on it. But eating for two isn't a license to eat double your normal amount of food. Use healthy lifestyle habits to control your pregnancy weight gain, support your baby's health and make it easier to shed the extra pounds after delivery.
Pregnancy weight gain guidelinesThere's no one-size-fits-all approach to pregnancy weight gain. How much weight you need to gain depends on various factors, including your pre-pregnancy weight and body mass index (BMI). Your health and your baby's health also play a role.
Work with your health care provider to determine what's right for you. Consider these general guidelines for pregnancy weight gain:
If you're carrying twins or multiples, you'll likely need to gain more weight. Again, work with your health care provider to determine what's right for you.
|Pre-pregnancy weight||Recommended weight gain|
|Underweight (BMI less than 18.5)||28 to 40 pounds (about 13 to 18 kilograms)|
|Normal weight (BMI 18.5 to 24.9)||25 to 35 pounds (about 11 to 16 kilograms)|
|Overweight (BMI 25 to 29.9)||15 to 25 pounds (about 7 to 11 kilograms)|
|Obese (BMI 30 or greater)||11 to 20 pounds (about 5 to 9 kilograms)|
If you gain more than the recommended amount during pregnancy and you don't lose the weight after the baby is born, the excess pounds increase your life-long health risks.
Where does pregnancy weight gain go?Let's say your baby weighs in at 7 or 8 pounds (about 3 to 3.6 kilograms). That accounts for some of your pregnancy weight gain. But what about the rest? Here's a sample breakdown:
- Baby: 7 to 8 pounds (about 3 to 3.6 kilograms)
- Larger breasts: 1 to 3 pounds (about .5 to 1.4 kilograms)
- Larger uterus: 2 pounds (about 1 kilogram)
- Placenta: 1 1/2 pounds (about .7 kilogram)
- Amniotic fluid: 2 pounds (about 1 kilogram)
- Increased blood volume: 3 to 4 pounds (about 1.4 to 1.8 kilograms)
- Increased fluid volume: 3 to 4 pounds (about 1.4 to 1.8 kilograms)
- Fat stores: 6 to 8 pounds (about 2.7 to 3.6 kilograms)
Putting on the poundsIn the first trimester, most women don't need to gain much weight — which is good news if you're struggling with morning sickness.
If you start out at a healthy weight, you need to gain only a few pounds (less than 2 kilograms) in the first few months of pregnancy — though due to changes in your body it can feel as if you've gained more. Steady weight gain is more important in the second and third trimesters — especially if you start out at a healthy weight or you're underweight. This often means gaining 3 to 4 pounds (about 1.4 to 1.8 kilograms) a month until delivery. If you began your pregnancy underweight, your health care provider may suggest boosting your caloric intake more.
To read the complete article and to find out more about a healthy pregnancy visit the Mayo Clinic website