You can protect your health and your growing baby with a healthy diet. Keep in mind that what and how you eat during pregnancy will affect your child's future health. Pregnancy is a time of "extras": extra tender love and care for you and your new life inside, and extra weight!
In terms of nutrition during pregnancy, you'll need extra calories, protein, vitamins, and minerals. All these foods will give your body the energy and nutritional resources it needs to support the developing fetus.
During pregnancy, the recommended weight gain depends on your pre-pregnancy body mass index (BMI). Women of normal BMI should aim to gain about 25 lbs to 35 lbs (11.4 kg to 15.9 kg), although this can be more if you are carrying twins or multiples.
Your weight gain during pregnancy likely will not be steady at first: most women typically gain between 1.1 lbs and 4.4 lbs (0.5 kg to 2.0 kg) during the first trimester. A good rate of gain after the first trimester for a woman whose pre-pregnancy BMI is in the normal range is approximately 1 lb (0.4 kg) each week, and you should aim to gain weight slowly but steadily during the last half of your pregnancy.Keep in mind that these recommendations may not apply to you, so if your weight gain pattern is different, it doesn't necessarily mean anything is wrong.
Whatever your previous weight, now's the time to adopt a sensible approach to eating well. Ask your doctor or a registered dietitian about what is an appropriate weight gain during pregnancy for you.
Keep in mind the following tips:
- Your weight before pregnancy will determine what is considered to be a healthy weight gain during pregnancy. While weight gain is normal during pregnancy, you should contact your doctor if you experience any sudden changes (gains or losses).
- Dieting is strongly not recommended during pregnancy, as it may be harmful to the development of the baby.
- You should choose from a variety of healthy food choices to ensure you are getting the best nutrition possible.
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