Gaining weight while you're pregnant is something that is close to unavoidable. It can be so challenging to try and balance your diet especially if you've never been someone that craves carbohydrates.
On the downside gaining much weight might come with a class of complications for you. An example on this can be C-Section delivery and premature child birth.
Even if you start pregnancy while you're overweight or obese, which is the case for some women, sticking to a range of recommendations for weight gain can significantly reduce your risk of health problems such as gestational diabetes and preeclampsia.
Below are important and achievable tips for healthy pregnancy weight gain.
1.If possible, try pregnancy at a healthy weight.
In addition to taking prenatal vitamins, starting pregnancy at a good weight is very important.
If you're thinking about conception, consider having a preconception appointment with your doctor who will help you determine your Body Mass Index and suggest ways to loose your weight if necessary.
2.Eat often but moderately.
You do not need many extra calories to nourish your growing baby.
Current guidelines recommend 340 extra calories per day in your second trimester and 450 extra calories per day in your third trimester if you're starting pregnancy at a healthy weight.
(If you're overweight or underweightthese numbers will differ based on your weight gain goal.
Therefore, choose foods that have a nutritional benefit and at the same time help you feel satisfied.
Focus on small and frequent meals that are high in proteins including fruits and vegetables. Then choose healthy snacks between meals.
Snacking every 3 times will help you avoid overdoing snacks at mealtimes.
Not only will you be providing good blood sugar to your baby but also your blood sugar will stay at a good level throughout.
Have meals and snacks that include fibre, protein and some healthy fat.
Fruits with lots of fibre and water such as grapefruit,oranges, apples, berries, pears and plums can also help you feel full and prevent constipation.
3. Drink a lot (I mean water)
It would be good to avoid dehydration during pregnancy. Drinking enough water helps you feel satisfied between meals and snacks.
Other experts suggest monitoring your urine colour. If it becomes dark yellow or cloudy, it means you need more fluids.
Sipping throughout the day keeps your urine colour pale yellow or clear which is a sign of proper hydration.
Drinking lots of water also keeps away constipation.
When you're pregnant, your digestive system tends to slow down, getting enough drinks will help keep things moving and prevent uncomfortable bloating.
4.Start a simple walking regime
The best thing a pregnant woman can do is to walk.
This is not only important for keeping your weight in check but it will also help you reduce pains and aches as you get to the end of pregnancy if you stay active.
5.Breastfeed if you can
While this may not be practical during pregnancy, it may help you with weight loss afterwards.
During breastfeeding, you burn close to 500 calories. Also, birth and the body changes that happen during the first 6 weeks postpartum should help you loose the first 20 pounds( from the baby, placenta and water leaving your body).
It's a great start to loosing baby fat.
6.If you're already moving, do not stop.
Not unless your work out routine includes heavy tasks that are risky for expectant mothers, there's no reason for you to stop it while your pregnant.
You may have to modify your movements as your bump grows and center of gravity changes.
Otherwise, there's no reason to restrict yourself from your usual activities.
You have to find out the best exercises to do during pregnancy and also when it isn't safe to work out anymore.
7.Make the starches work harder.
For a pregnant woman that is battling with nausea and vomiting, carbohydrates can be your number one friend.
However, simple starchy foods such as rice, white bread and pasta, raise your blood sugar without offering you the nutrition that comes with whole grains.
Therefore, it is better to take complex carbohydrates such as brown rice and whole grain breads and pastas.
This will provide you and your baby with more nutrients that will keep you full for longer and make you less likely to have unhealthy cravings during the day.
While it is not so easy to keep your weight in check while you're pregnant, it is worth trying to so that you and your baby can have an easy time.
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