WIC in Vermont

Before Birth

Healthy Weight Gain

Weight gain is a normal part of pregnancy to support the growth and development of your baby. It is important to gain enough weight so your baby is healthy, but not too much weight to cause complications. How much weight to gain depends on your weight before you became pregnant. Your doctor or WIC nutritionist can help you find out your BMI to determine how much weight you should gain during your pregnancy.

How much weight should I gain?

A weight gain chart can help you track your weight gain. Check with your doctor or WIC nutritionist for the recommended weight gain that is right for you. The guidelines below are based on how much you weighed before you became pregnant:

Normal weight

If you started your pregnancy at a normal weight, you should gain between 25-35 pounds. Generally, you will gain about 2-4 pounds during the first trimester, and then about a pound a week in the last two trimesters. A steady and gradual weight gain is best.

Underweight

If you started your pregnancy underweight, you should gain 28 - 40 pounds. Generally, you will gain about 2-4 pounds during the first trimester, and then a little over a pound a week in the last two trimesters. A steady and gradual weight gain is best.

Overweight

If you started your pregnancy overweight, you should gain 15 - 25 pounds. Generally, you will gain about 2-4 pounds during the first trimester, and then a little over half a pound a week in the last two trimesters. A steady and gradual weight gain is best.

Obese

If you were obese when you started your pregnancy, you should gain 11 - 20 pounds. Generally, you will gain about 1-4 pounds during the first trimester, and then about a little less than a pound a week in the last two trimesters. A steady and gradual weight gain is best.

What if I'm expecting twins?

If you are pregnant with twins and you started at a normal weight, you should gain about 37-54 pounds. If you were overweight when you became pregnant with twins you should gain about 31 - 50 pounds. If you were obese when you became pregnant with twins you should gain about 25 - 42 poounds. Check with your doctor for a more individualized weight gain goal for carrying multiple babies or if you began your pregnancy underweight.

Dieting during pregnancy

Losing weight while you are pregnant can be very dangerous for your baby. If you are concerned about gaining too much weight during your pregnancy, there are a few things to keep in mind…

  • Eat a variety of healthy foods each day.
  • The food you eat helps your baby grow and develop.
  • Trust your body. Your body knows how much it needs.
  • Eat when you feel hungry.
  • Eat regular meals and snacks. Try not to skip meals. You’ll be more
    likely to overeat at your next meal if you skip a meal.
  • Choose foods naturally lower in fat, including cereals and grains, fruits and vegetables, low-fat dairy foods and lean meats, poultry, fish and beans.
  • Try not to eat too many “empty” calories such as those in candy, chips, soda and other sugary beverages.

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