How Much Weight Gain Is Normal During Pregnancy

How Do The Calories Add Up

How much weight gain is normal during pregnancy? – Dr. H S Chandrika

You may have heard the saying, “you’re eating for two.” Although it is true that the food you eat is nourishing two, your calorie needs only increase by about 300 per day after the first trimester. So if your goal is a healthy weight gain, keep in mind that your calorie needs don’t increase that much. Here are three examples of healthy food choices that add up to 300 calories:

  • Whole-wheat English muffin with two tablespoons peanut butter
  • One cup of yogurt with one cup fresh fruit
  • Bowl of high-fiber cereal with reduced-fat or skim milk

Average Pregnancy Weight Gain Chart

  • 7 1/2 pounds is about how much the baby will weigh by the end of pregnancy.
  • 1 1/2 pounds is how much the placenta weighs.
  • 4 pounds is attributed to increased fluid volume.
  • 2 pounds is the weight of the uterus.
  • 2 pounds is the weight of breast tissue.
  • 4 pounds is because of increased blood volume.
  • 7 pounds is attributed to maternal stores of fat, protein, and other nutrients.
  • 2 pounds for the amniotic fluid.
  • Total: 30 pounds

On a trimester basis in a woman with normal pre-pregnancy weight:

  • First trimester: 1-4.5 pounds
  • Second trimester: 1-2 pounds per week
  • Third trimester: 1-2 pounds per week

Remember this is just an average you and your health care provider need to decide what is best for you.

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Gaining Pregnancy Weight Gradually

Resist the temptation to âeat for two.â When youâre pregnant, itâs important to gain the weight gradually. In fact, during the first trimester, your body wonât need any extra pounds to support the baby. Considering you may also be struggling with morning sickness, gaining weight may actually be quite difficult in the first few months anyway. But, as your pregnancy progresses, youâll need to put the pounds on steadily and gradually in the second and third trimesters.

This is a rough breakdown of how many extra calories you should consume for healthy pregnancy weight gain by trimester.

  • First trimester: No extra calories needed.

  • Second trimester: Around 340 extra calories per day.

  • Third trimester: Around 450 extra calories per day.

These extra calories are based on the recommended baseline intake of 2000 calories a day. Remember, these guidelines may vary depending on your BMI and other factors, like if youâre expecting twins or multiples.

There is no need to force yourself to exceed your caloric intake if youâre not hungry. Instead, listen to your body. Follow a healthy pregnancy nutrition plan, and discuss your calorie needs with your provider if youâre still unsure.

Do not diet while youâre pregnant, but also, be mindful of the foods you consume. Make sure you have lots of nutritious, healthy food â you definitely donât need to indulge in double portions of chocolate and ice cream to nourish your growing baby.

Recommended Reading: What Food Should Eat During Pregnancy

When Should You Gain Most Pregnancy Weight

Think of how your belly grows during pregnancy. Your change in weight follows a similar pattern.

During the first trimester, there usually isnt that much change. A few pounds usually between 1 and 5 should really be about all you gain during those early weeks, explains Harris.

Most of the weight gained during pregnancy should come in the second and third trimesters. In general, youll gain about a pound a week during this period.

Healthy Weight Gain Tips For Healthy Women


Here are some tips to help you manage healthy weight gain during pregnancy.

  • Pregnancy is not about eating for two. In the first 12 weeks of pregnancy, you can eat the same amount as you usually would. It is important you eat healthy food.
  • After the 12th week, and if you are a healthy weight, the extra food you need each day is about the same as a wholegrain cheese and tomato sandwich, or a wholegrain peanut butter sandwich and a banana. If you are overweight or obese, the extra food you need is about the same as 1 slice of wholegrain bread or 2 apples.
  • Drink water rather than sweetened drinks or fizzy drinks.
  • Drink low-fat or light blue milk instead of full-fat milk.
  • Choose wholegrain bread instead of white bread.
  • Eat a healthy breakfast every day, such as wheat biscuits or porridge with low-fat milk, or 2 slices of wholegrain toast.
  • Have at least 4 servings of vegetables and 2 servings of fruit every day. Buy vegetables and fruits that are in season, or buy frozen vegetables to help reduce cost, wastage and preparation time. Tinned fruit in juice are also a good option.
  • Examples of a vegetable or fruit serving:
  • half a cup of peas, broccoli or carrots
  • 1 medium-sized potato, banana, orange or apple
  • 1 large kiwifruit.
  • If vegetable/fruit juice or dried fruit is consumed, it contributes a maximum of only 1 serving of the total recommended number of daily servings for fruit/vegetables.
  • Prepare and eat meals at home. Have takeaways no more than once a week.
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    Monday 14 August 2017

    Pregnancy is an exciting time, whether youre carrying your first baby or bringing a new member into a larger family. But there are elements of pregnancy that can cause some women concern, including weight gain. Are you gaining enough weight, have you put on too much, how will you lose the weight once youve given birth?

    Gaining a healthy amount of weight is an important part of keeping you and your baby healthy during pregnancy and after birth. A recent worldwide study shows that about three out of four women arent gaining healthy amounts of weight while pregnant, with nearly a quarter of women not gaining enough weight, and almost half gaining more than a healthy amount of weight.

    Read on to find out how much weight you should expect to gain during pregnancy, and diet and exercise tips to help keep you and bub healthy during pregnancy and after birth.

    Healthy Pregnancy Weight Gain During Pregnancy: Month By Month

    Most OB professionals recommend a pregnancy weight gain of anywhere between 25 and 30 pounds for a healthy pregnancy. However, the average differs tremendously, yet many still have a healthy baby and a healthy body afterward. Typically you should gain about 3.5 to 4 pounds during the first trimester, about 12 to 15 pounds during the middle trimester, and about 8 to 10 pounds in the last trimester for a total of about 30 pounds or so.

    A mothers average weight gain during pregnancy should be a slow and steady process, which again has to depend on your actual weight and body type. We bring forth some general guidelines to give an insight on weight gain during pregnancy. If you have any health conditions, you should ask your doctor or midwife for specific suggestions.

    Let us have a look at the details, which can explain the average weight gain during pregnancy.

    Take a look at your prepregnancy weight:

    Twin Pregnancy 35-45 lbs

    Those numbers are broad and dont break down what you should be doing in the short term. Lets talk about your pregnancy weight gain per month.

    • Weight gain during 1st trimester- Gain up to 1 and a half pounds each month for the first 1 to 3 months by consuming about 200 extra calories each day.

    After the first trimester, you can start to look at your pregnancy weight gain per week to help you stay on track:

    More importantly, prepregnancy weight affects outcomes more than pregnancy weight gain.

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    How Much Weight Should I Gain In Pregnancy


    HomePregnancyHubBeing pregnantBeing healthy during pregnancyWeight managementWeight management in pregnancy How much weight should I gain in pregnancy?

    Every pregnant woman gains weight differently so there are no official guidelines for how much weight you should gain. The most important thing is to keep your weight gain to a safe and healthy level for you and your baby.

    Only some of the weight you gain in pregnancy will be body fat. The other things causing weight gain will include:

    • your baby
    • the amniotic fluid
    • your growing breasts
    • the increased blood you need
    • natural fluid retention.

    Some women may even lose weight during the first few months, especially if they have morning sickness, and that is absolutely normal. But don’t try to lose weight while you’re pregnant as this is not healthy for you or your baby.

    You probably wont be weighed at each antenatal visit if you are within a healthy weight range. But if you have an underweight or overweight body mass index your doctor or midwife may weigh you more often because there are more potential risks for you and your baby.

    Pregnancy Weight Gain: How Much Weight Is Healthy To Gain

    Weight gain in Pregnancy, Causes of weight gain during pregnancy, Prevention

    During pregnancy, gaining an ideal weight is different for every pregnant person. There is no such magic number of how many pounds you should gain. It is said, too little weight or too much weight is not healthy for you or your baby. The weight you gain during your pregnancy affects your health after your pregnancy which in turn can affect your baby’s health right into their adult years.

    Also read: Food Craving During Pregnancy: Here’s A List Of Foods Expecting Mothers Should Strictly Avoid

    The recommendations for weight gain during pregnancy are based on your pre-pregnancy weight and Body mass index . Putting on the recommended amount of weight in pregnancy is associated with optimizing health outcomes for you and your baby, you are more likely to be well-nourished, your baby will be more likely to grow to an appropriate size, and you’ll have an easier time carrying your baby to term and returning to your pre-pregnancy weight.

    A woman should gain 10 to 14 kg during pregnancy, an average of 12 kg, in order to elevate the likelihood of giving birth to a healthy baby, with less risk of fetal and maternal complications. Generally, women who were at a healthy weight before becoming pregnant need between 2,200 calories and 2,900 calories a day when expecting. A steady increase in calories as the baby grows is the best bet.

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    Whats A Healthy Weight

    How much weight you should gain while pregnant will depend on your pre-pregnancy weight and your pregnancy .

    Most of us have heard of body mass index or BMI a tool used to determine if you are underweight, have a healthy weight or are overweight. Your BMI is a number, and gives an idea of how much weight youre carrying across your frame by dividing your weight by your height. A healthy BMI is between 18.5 and 24.9. You can calculate your BMI using the Health Direct calculator.

    Based on your BMI from before you fell pregnant, your health professional can advise you about recommended weight gain during pregnancy.

    If you were in the healthy weight range before becoming pregnant, then ideally you should gain between 11.5 and 16 kilograms during your pregnancy. You should expect to gain 11.5 kilograms in the first three months, then 1.52 kilograms each month until you give birth.

    If youre overweight or underweight, the goal posts will shift a little. Women with a low BMI should gain between 12.5 and 18 kilograms throughout their pregnancy. Women with a higher BMI should gain between 7 and 11.5 kilograms.

    Talk to your doctor and use a tool like the Pregnancy Weight Gain Charts linked below to map out how much weight you should expect to gain each month of pregnancy.

    Body Image During Pregnancy

    If you have struggled with your weight in the past, it may be hard to accept that it is OK to gain weight now. It is normal to feel anxious as the numbers on the scale edge up.

    Keep in mind that you need to gain weight for a healthy pregnancy. The extra pounds will come off after you have had your baby. However, if you gain a lot more weight than is recommended, your baby will also be bigger. That can sometimes lead to problems with delivery. A healthy diet and regular exercise are your best ways to ensure a healthy pregnancy and baby.

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    When To Call The Doctor

    Its always a good idea to check with your doctor if youre concerned about weight gain. This is a conversation OB/GYNs and midwives are used to having, and they can help you find ways to hit your goals or refer you to someone else for additional support.

    Also check with your practitioner if you gain:

    • More than three pounds in any one week in the second trimester

    • More than two pounds in any week in the third trimester

    • No weight for more than two weeks in a row during the fourth to eighth months

    Its common to worry about losing weight after pregnancy, but try your best not to stress about it. You’ll lose a lot of the baby weight naturally early on, and there are plenty of healthy ways to drop the rest gradually, including eating a nutrient-dense postpartum or breastfeeding diet, taking your baby out for regular stroller walks, and incorporating fitness once youre cleared to exercise.

    From the What to Expect editorial team and Heidi Murkoff, author of What to Expect When You’re Expecting. What to Expect follows strict reporting guidelines and uses only credible sources, such as peer-reviewed studies, academic research institutions and highly respected health organizations. Learn how we keep our content accurate and up-to-date by reading our medical review and editorial policy.

    Pregnancy Weight Gain: What To Expect

    Diary of a Fit Mommy: Normal Pregnancy Weight Gain Breakdown

    According to the findings, for a healthy pregnancy, most expecting mothers should gain anywhere between 25 to 35 pounds or 11.5 to 16 kilograms. In most cases, women will gain between two to four pounds or one to two kilograms during the first weeks of pregnancy. After the first trimester, women typically gain one pound or half a kilogram per week for the remainder of the pregnancy. The overall weight gain in pregnancy will depend on the woman and the situation. For example:

    • Women who are overweight should gain less weight .
    • Underweight women should gain more weight .
    • If you have multiple births, you need to gain more weight. Women with twins require an additional 16.5 to 24.5 kilograms or 37 to 54 pounds.

    As you can see, pregnancy weight gain will depend on the mothers weight before pregnancy, as well as specific scenarios . Overall, healthy pregnancy and weight gain will revolve around a balanced and nutrient-dense diet. Here are the rough caloric estimates for most expecting mothers:

    • 1,800 calories daily in the first trimester.
    • 2,200 calories daily in the second trimester.
    • 2,400 calories daily in the third trimester.

    We advise consulting a trained professional such as Dr. David Adler for precise and custom-tailored guidance related to your health and the well-being of your unborn child. Remember, your calories may vary, and you may require more or fewer calories than what is noted above.

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    Managing Weight During Pregnancy

    Some women are already overweight when they get pregnant. Other women gain weight too quickly during their pregnancy. Either way, a pregnant woman should not go on a diet or try to lose weight during pregnancy.

    It is better to focus on eating the right foods and staying active. If you do not gain enough weight during pregnancy, you and your baby may have problems.

    Still, you can make changes in your diet to get the nutrients you need without gaining too much weight. Talk to your health care provider to get help with planning a healthy diet.

    Below are some healthy eating tips to help you get started.

    Healthy choices:

    • Fresh fruits and vegetables make good snacks. They are full of vitamins and low in calories and fat.
    • Eat breads, crackers, and cereals made with whole grains.
    • Choose reduced-fat dairy products. You need at least 4 servings of milk products every day. However, using skim, 1%, or 2% milk will greatly reduce the amount of calories and fat you eat. Also choose low-fat or fat-free cheese or yogurt.

    Foods to avoid:

    Eating out:

    • Knowing the amount of calories, fat, and salt in your food can help you eat healthier.
    • Most restaurants have menus and nutrition facts on their websites. Use these to plan ahead.
    • In general, eat at places that offer salads, soups, and vegetables.
    • Avoid fast food.

    Cooking at home:


    Staying Healthy During Pregnancy

    The following tips may help a person stay healthy during pregnancy:

    • Eat a healthy, balanced diet. This includes a wide variety of foods, especially lean protein, whole grains, low fat dairy, vegetables, and fruits. Limit consumption of added sugars and solid fats. Be cautious or avoid foods that are not safe during pregnancy.
    • Stay active.Physical activity is safe and healthy for pregnant people unless advised otherwise by a healthcare professional. Walking and swimming are examples of safe and effective exercises during pregnancy.
    • Drink plenty of water. Pregnant people should drink 812 cups of water. This is important in producing amniotic fluid, helping nutrients circulate throughout the body, and flushing toxins.
    • Take supplements. A pregnant person may ask their healthcare professional what supplements they need. Generally, a person only requires folic acid and iodine during pregnancy. Some may need other supplements based on their individual risk factors.
    • Work with a healthcare professional. A doctor will monitor a pregnant persons weight and overall pregnancy health throughout the pregnancy. A dietitian may also help plan how to boost or cut down on calories, as needed.

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