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Healthy Weight Gain Important for a Healthy Pregnancy August 25, 2010

FOR MORE INFORMATION, contact Rebecca Sylvester at 706/828-2394.

Healthy Weight Gain Important for a Healthy Pregnancy

(AUGUSTA, GA. August 20, 2010) – Being pregnant shouldn’t give you unlimited access to the fast food drive-thru, nor is it the appropriate time to diet.

Gaining the right amount of weight helps protect the health of your baby, according to Beth Barranco, a registered nurse and University Hospital’s WAGT Healthy U correspondent.

“Women who gain too little are at increased risk of having a small baby,” Ms. Barranco said. “But women who gain too much are at increased risk of having an early baby or a large baby, and they may also have health problems themselves such as diabetes, high blood pressure and varicose veins.”

In general, most women need around 300 extra calories per day during pregnancy, she said. Women should talk to their obstetricians about specific pregnancy weight gain goals, but here are some general guidelines:

  • If you began pregnancy at a normal weight, you should gain 25–35 pounds over the nine months.
  • If you began pregnancy underweight, you should probably gain a little more. Underweight women are more likely to have small babies. A 28- to 40-pound gain is usually recommended.
  • If you began pregnancy overweight, you should gain only 15–25 pounds over the nine months.
  • If you were obese at the start of your pregnancy, you should gain only 11–20 pounds over the nine months.

How can we gain the right amount of weight during pregnancy?

  • Eat 5-6 small meals a day.
  • Keep quick, easy snacks on hand, such as nuts, raisins, cheese and crackers, dried fruit and yogurt.
  • In general, you should gain about two to four pounds during your first three months of pregnancy and one pound a week for the remainder of your pregnancy.
  • Don't try to lose weight during pregnancy unless it is directed by your physician.

For more information on weight gain during pregnancy contact ASK-A-NURSE at 706.737.8423. For daily updates and links, become a fan of Beth Barranco, RN-HealthyU on Facebook!



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