What Is The Ideal Weight Gain During Pregnancy

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Weight gain during pregnancy depends on how much you weighed before you conceived and whether that’s ideal weight for your height. The relationship between your height and weight is expressed in a number called a body mass index, or BMI.

You’re pregnant, and that means you’re supposed to gain weight. But it’s important to know how much to gain and when to gain it. While all of this may sound overwhelming, in most cases there’s a lot you can do to keep your weight gain under control (your gynaecologist will be there to guide you).

Some important information has been shared in this piece of article about weight gain during pregnancy.

How Much Weight Gain In Normal and By What Time Should the Weight Increase

The process of putting on pounds is not an exact science unlike the equation used to calculate your BMI. Your rate of weight gain will depend on a variety of factors, such as your your activity level, metabolism, and your genes. But it is important to keep up your doctor appointments throughout your pregnancy. The weight gain varies trimester wise.

  • First Trimester- Most women don’t gain much weight during the first three months of pregnancy, which is a good news if you are struggling with morning sickness. A few pounds, or less than 2kg, is fine in the first few months.
  • Second Trimester- Most women gain about 1.4 to 1.8kg (3-4 lbs) a month. Try adding more zinc – from foods like meat, chicken, chickpeas, spinach and nuts. Zinc is required in the second trimester for rapid cell growth as your baby starts to really grow.
  • Third Trimester- Women gain about 1.4 to 1.8kg (3-4 lbs) a month in the last trimester as well. Build up vitamin K stores which will help the blood to clot – with foods such as potato skins, banana, Brussels sprouts, cabbage and prunes.

For most moms-to-be, with a healthy and ideal pre-pregnancy weight, doctors recommended gaining around  11-16kg (25-35lbs) over the full nine months.

Here’s where the weight gain goes

Baby: 2 – 3.4 kg

Placenta: 0.5 kg

Amniotic fluid: 4.0 – 5.9 kg

Larger uterus: 0.5 – 1.1 kg

Larger breasts: 0.5 – 1.4kg

Increased blood volume: 1.0 – 1.8 kg

Increased fat stores: 1.0 – 3.6 kg

Experts recommend that the weight gain during pregnancy will always depend on your body mass index:

BMI- Underweight (less than 19.8)

Recommended weight gain (kg)- 12.5 – 18

Average weight gain per week after the 3rd month- 0.5

BMI- Healthy weight (19.8 – 26)

Recommended weight gain (kg)- 11.5 – 16

Average weight gain per week after the 3rd month- 0.44

BMI- Overweight (26.0 – 29.0)

Recommended weight gain (kg)- 7 – 11.5

Average weight gain per week after the 3rd month- 0.3

BMI- Obese (more than 29.0)

Recommended weight gain (kg)- 6.0 – 8.0

Average weight gain per week after the 3rd month- 0.3

*BMI = weight (kg)/height (m2) 

(Data Source: Nestle)

Is It Safe to Lose Weight During Pregnancy?

Doctor may recommend weight reduction if a female is extremely overweight while she conceives. Weight loss should be done under guidance of an expert only. In most cases, women should not try to lose weight or diet during the pregnancy.

What if  You Are Carrying Twins

Typical weight gain for women carrying twins is around 50% more than in a single pregnancy.

Being pregnant with twins puts extra demands on the mother’s body, so paying attention to the diet will have lasting health benefits for you and your twins.

Experts say you’ll need 50%-100% more of the essential nutrients too, such as folic acid,  iron, vitamin B12 and calcium. While the best way to get these is through food, few health experts recommend a daily pre-natal vitamin and mineral supplement.

Gaining extra weight than recommended during pregnancy can make it hard to lose after the baby is born. Bear in mind that you don’t need to eat for two. Keep active and eating a balanced diet will help you to control your weight. Exercise is good for you during pregnancy. Staying active will also increase your chances of having a trouble-less labour and easy birth.

To know more about exercises which can be done during pregnancy click here.


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