A Guide To Managing Weight Gain During Pregnancy

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“Eat as much as you want to, you are eating for two” and “Eat whatever you like”, are the two common phrases you must be hearing, if you are pregnant. But you must be worried about the pounds you are gaining and looking for ways to manage weight gain during pregnancy.

Aren’t you worried about aunties giving you all sorts of fat-filled panjeerees and makayi ki rotiyan. With every bite going into your mouth you see an extra pound going in. The health benefits of our old as time panjeeri are not to be undermined but all such recipes are loaded with fat. The good news is that you can manage your weight along with making your mothers happy by eating their panjeeri.

Most healthy women should gain between 25-35 pounds during their pregnancy. 2-4 pounds are gained in the first trimester and then 1 pound is gained every week in the last two trimesters. Despite noticing a common trend healthy weight gain depends on your pre-pregnancy health. If you are overweight then you need to aim at gaining 15-25 pounds. If you are underweight, you should aim at gaining at least 28-40 pounds.

Such rules of thumb are set by studying common cases. If your case diverts from the normal, you need not panic. Consulting a gynecologist and a nutritionist will help you solve all your pregnancy-weight related queries.

Weight gain is inevitable in pregnancy but some ways can prevent you from gaining weight excessively. These tips will also help you in losing weight post-pregnancy.

Going on crash diets to lose weight while you are pregnant is the worst you could do to yourself and your baby. Healthy eating, satisfying your cravings in a healthy way

Tips To Prevent Weight Gain During Pregnancy

1. Don’t Eat For Two

Chugging down 2 glasses of milkshake and two burgers, because one is for your baby is just an excuse for you to eat more. Mind you that there is a baby inside you, not a dinosaur.

If you are a healthy body weight your baby doesn’t need any of the garbage you are putting into your body. Throughout the first trimester, a baby can easily feed off of your body and the normal food you were eating before pregnancy. Experts recommend taking in 340 extra calories in the second trimester and 450 extra calories in the third. These can easily be consumed by a healthy fruit juice or a bowl of oatmeal.

4. Stay Active

Your pregnancy should not stick you to your bed or couch. You need to carry out the normal activities. You need to engage in healthy exercises.

Light exercises like running, walking, and easy aerobics can help you stay active and prevent excessive weight gain. Swimming if possible is one of the best exercises during pregnancy.

The healthier and fitter you are, the more likely you are to adjust to the body changes that come with pregnancy. Proper exercise in the last trimester can prepare your body for an easier delivery. Some general tips that you should consider while exercising pregnancy are;

  • Do not exhaust yourself.
  • Avoid jumping, skipping, and running.
  • Warm-up before starting the exercise
  • Avoid strenuous exercises, especially in hot weather.

3. Eat Small But Eat Often

As your baby grows you will have little room in your tummy for food. The best way to combat this problem is to eat small but frequent meals.

Small and frequent meals keep the hunger levels under control. This also helps in maintaining optimum energy levels. Eating frequently will prevent you from stuffing yourself in the next meal.

4. Pack a Punch

Try preparing your meals in a way that you get enough protein and fiber in each meal. This will satisfy you and your baby. Fibers and proteins will keep you full for a very long time, preventing overeating and excessive weight gain. Fibers will also help you cure constipation.

Your food needs to be rich in minerals and vitamins, too. Keep in mind that every vitamin is essential for your baby’s normal growth. Vitamins like zinc and folic acid are essential for brain growth and iron is vital for normal blood development in the fetus.

Another important mineral is calcium. You need at least 1300mg of calcium per day during pregnancy. This coupled with enough vitamin D will help you and your baby maintain healthy bones. A well-balanced crap-free and nutrient-rich diet is your path to a healthy pregnancy.

5. Watch Out For The Cravings

No one is judging you for wanting to have a bowl of ice-cream or a plate of french fries. Cravings in pregnancy are as normal as pregnancy itself. It’s fine to have an occasional bowl of your favorite ice-cream or the jalapeno wrap you have been craving.

There is no denying that these cravings if not monitored can lead to excessive weight gain.

The key is to satisfy your cravings while keeping it healthy. For instance, your craving for sweets can be curbed by having a date granola bar. Similarly, instead of going for cheese pringles, make tortilla chips with salsa and cheese. Although the latter has more calories, it also offers a number of nutrients.

The Bottom Line

Pregnancy comes with a lot of complications, undecipherable by others and sometimes by you too. Understand yourself, love yourself and take care of yourself. While the former two can be done by you on your own, for the latter you might need professional help. To find a solution to all your pregnancy issues consult a gynecologist and to gift yourself a path towards healthy eating during pregnancy consult a nutritionist.

Book an appointment now, to start your journey towards health. You can book an appointment with the best doctors in Pakistan through Marham by calling at Marham helpline: 0311-1222398 or by online booking facility through the website or Marham mobile app.

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Hiba Batool

Hiba Batool

She is a nutrition graduate from Kinnaird College, Lahore. She is a nutritionist by profession. Her interests lie in medical research and writing. She masters in all topics related to nutrition and health.

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