Part of pregnancy is gaining weight, but how much is normal? Know the usual weight gain during pregnancy and learn how to keep track of it.

Distribution Of Weight During Pregnancy

Have you ever wondered where the extra weight that you gain during pregnancy goes? It may feel like it is all placed in your belly but it’s not. For pregnant women who are within the normal BMI (18.5-24.9), here’s where the extra weight goes:

 Maternal Breast Tissue- 1 to 2 pounds

 Maternal Blood Volume- 3 to 4 pounds

 Maternal Fat and Protein Storage- 8 to 10 pounds

 Other Body Fluids- 3 to 4 pounds

 Baby- 6 to 8 pounds

 Placenta- 1 to 2 pounds

 Uterus- 1 to 2 pounds

 Amniotic Fluid- 2 to 3 pounds

Work Out Your Desired Pregnancy Weight

First, Compute for your Basal Mass Index or BMI. This can be done by getting the square of your height in meters and dividing it by your weight.

Secondly, know the recommended weight gain for your BMI and check the recommended total weight gain for the corresponding BMI.

BMI chart for single pregnancy

BMI chart for twin pregnancy

Weight Gain Tracker and Weight Gain Chart by CDC

Instructions:

• Write your pre-pregnancy weight in the space provided.

• Based on your week of pregnancy* , write the date and your weight that is rounded
off to the nearest pound.

• Write today’s weight gain in the space provided on the weight gain tracker. To determine today’s weight gain, subtract your weight just before pregnancy from today’s weight.
Example: subtract your weight just before pregnancy (130 pounds) from today’s weight (135 pounds) to determine today’s weight gain (5 pounds).

• Print the chart and plot your weight gain in the graph by putting an “x” in the corresponding week and weight gain.

• The shaded area corresponds to the normal weight gain for pregnant women,and if your graph is outside of the shaded area, it means that you should make adjustments to your weight gain and exercise.

• Leave a blank space for your missed week and continue plotting on the chart/graph until your 40th week

Recommended Weight Gain Per Trimester for Single Pregnancy

First trimester

There is minimal weight gain during the 1st trimester, about 0.5 to 2 kilograms or 1.1 to 4.4 pounds. It is common to lose s significant amount of weight but make sure that it is not more than 5 to 10 percent of your pre-pregnancy weight, as this might be harmful for the baby inside your womb.

Second trimester

During the 2nd trimester, your weight gain should be steady and gradually increasing with an average of 0.2 to 0.5 kilograms (0.5 to 1 pound) per week.

Third trimester

Until the 3rd trimester, your weight should continue to gradually increase/ The average weight gain during this time is around 0.2 to 0.5 kilograms 0.5 to 1 pound) per week, the same as during the 2nd trimester.

Recommended Amount of Calories Per Day

A healthy pregnancy does not only include exercise but also a balanced, nutrient-rich diet. Knowing the right number of calories that should be consumed per day can help you eat healthier. Here’s the normal number of calories that should be taken per day for the whole duration of pregnancy.

o First Trimester – 1,800 calories per day
o Second Trimester – 2,200 calories per day
o Third Trimester- 2,400 calories per day

Importance of Gaining Weight Within the Normal Range

It is important to gain weight within the normal range, to refrain from delivering a too-small-for-gestational-age baby because of insufficient nourishment for the fetus. Babies that are born too small may have difficulty in feeding and may have developmental delays.

Gaining more than the recommended weight range can lead to a big baby that will eventually cause the mom to undergo cesarean section and obesity.

Proper Food Choices For Pregnant Woman

To Eat

 Eat frequently, as many as 5 to 6 meals per day.
 Have an easy snack on hand such as fresh fruits and vegetables. These are filled with vitamins and are low in calories and fat.
 Choose reduced-fat dairy products. Have at least 4 servings of milk every day. Choose low-fat or fat-free cheese or yogurt.
 Use natural sweetener for your food or drinks.
 Lessen salt in your foods as this can cause retention of water.
 Instead of frying, try baking, broiling, grilling and boiling your food as these are healthier preparation methods.
 Eat at places that offers salads, soups and vegetables.

Not To Eat

 Do not eat foods or drinks that contain sugar and artificial sweeteners.
 Read the label before eating or drinking it. Some foods are high in calories.
 Food and drinks that have corn syrup as an ingredient are not advisable.
 Avoid eating junk-food such as chips, cake, cookies and candies.
 Minimize using fat in your food. If you can, use low-fat versions of these foods.
 Avoid eating fast food.

Is it alright to Lose weight?

Some moms who were previously overweight before pregnancy might be advised to lose some weight as they are more prone to complications during pregnancy and labor. While most of the time, mothers who do not have any problems during pregnancy, are advised to gain weight within the normal range.

Why Exercise When I Should Be Gaining Weight?

Exercise is not only for those who needed to lose weight, but it should be a daily routine of pregnant women as it can increase your overall health and at the same time prepare you for labor and delivery.

It is advised to have a moderate intensity exercise for up to 150 minutes (2 1/2) for the whole week.