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pregnant woman eating yogurtYou're pregnant and preparing to see those numbers rise on the scale, but how much weight gain is too much? Every pregnant body is different, so there’s no one-size-fits-all answer. Here’s what accounts for the weight that’s gained in a typical pregnancy:

  • Increased Blood Supply (4 pounds)
  • Extra Storage of Fat (Up to 10 pounds)
  • Expanded Uterus (Up to 5 pounds)
  • Extra Breast Tissue (Up to 3 pounds)
  • Developing Baby, Placenta, and Amniotic Fluid (Up to 15 pounds)

This means most women will gain between 25 and 35 pounds during a pregnancy. Underweight mothers may need to gain more, while overweight and obese patients may only gain 10 to 20 pounds without additional risk. Gaining too much weight or not enough can put you at risk for premature birth and increase the likelihood of a caesarean section.

A good goal when you're “eating for two” is to gain 2 to 4 pounds during the first trimester, and then 3 to 4 pounds per month for the second and third trimesters. Most women only need an extra 350 to 450 calories daily and you might plan for five to six small meals per day along with healthy snacks. Eating fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean protein and good fats are the best way to nourish you and your baby.

To protect yourself and your baby from harmful bacteria such as E. coli, salmonella and listeria you should not eat soft cheeses or raw or undercooked meat, poultry, seafood or eggs.  You may also want to reduce or eliminate caffeinated beverages like soda or coffee during pregnancy.

Exercise can help you maintain a healthy weight during pregnancy and give you more energy and reduce back pain. Walking and water aerobics are two examples of exercises that are ideal for pregnant women.

Staying active and eating healthy foods with good nutrients in the right portions can help you achieve the right weight gain for a successful pregnancy and give your baby a great start to life.

Northline Women's Health Center Locations:

15675 Northline Road

Southgate, MI 48195

(734) 282-3600
(734) 282-3603 - Fax

23050 West Road, Suite 210

Brownstown Twp., MI 48183

(734) 362-7000
(734) 362-7077 - Fax