What to eat and not gain weight during pregnancy?
One of the things that worries us most when we find out we are pregnant is how our bodies will change and how much we should gain weight.
Inevitably all pregnant women must gain weight in order to accommodate the baby and ensure a good pregnancy, however this should not be more than recommended, because otherwise, we have the risk of suffering various health problems such as preeclampsia or diabetes. But is there a menu for pregnant women so they don’t get fat?
One of the issues that most concerns women during pregnancy is weight change.
On our weight depends the healthy development of the baby and the normal evolution of pregnancy, which is why nutrition is so important during this stage.
What should we eat? How much weight should we gain? or how to control our weight? are the doubts that most women assault us when we expect a baby, not only to try to maintain our figure but a health issue for both.
In order not to gain more weight than you should and avoid any health problems, we tell you how much weight you should increase during pregnancy and some recommendations regarding diet among them, a menu for pregnant women not to gain weight, healthy and balanced.
How much should we gain during pregnancy?
The first thing you should bear in mind with regard to weight during pregnancy is that just as you go to consultations with specialists to learn about the development and health of the baby in training, it is necessary that you also invest in a nutritionist, and know which is the diet you should follow to avoid uncontrolling your diet and weight gain during pregnancy.
Taking care of your diet during pregnancy is very important not only for your weight, but for your baby’s development and for your own health.
You may think that just eating a little more is enough, but whether you’re thin or you’re at the ideal weight, you need a balanced and healthy pregnancy menu and a special guide to help you manage your weight during the 40 weeks of pregnancy.
Women who are very thin early in pregnancy have a higher risk that the baby will be underweight in the womb.
In order not to gain too much weight during pregnancy, it is necessary to know how many kilos you should gain according to the physiognomy of your body and how they should be distributed in each trimester.
Here’s how many kilos you’re allowed to gain according to your pre-pregnancy weight. Take note!
- If you’re at your ideal weight: A normal or ideal weight is considered when your height matches your weight. Age should not be a problem, since most women get pregnant between the ages of 23 and 35 (if you’re not in this range nothing bad happens). Once the first point has been clarified, a woman should gain between 10 and 12 kilograms progressively during the 40 weeks of pregnancy.
- If you are overweight: A woman is considered overweight when she is 8 kilos over what she should be according to her height, age and weight. If that is your case, during pregnancy you should gain a maximum of 10 kilograms more, in fact most nutritionists recommend setting as a goal to increase between 4.5 and 8 kilograms during pregnancy if you are overweight.
- If you’re very thin: In this case, you need to pay close attention to what you eat, how many calories you eat, and how many meals you can eat each day. The specialists say that during the first trimester of pregnancy a woman should eat 150 calories a day more than usual, while for the second 300 calories are enough, and in the final period of pregnancy exceed 500 calories.
Recommended weight gain for each trimester
Knowing how much weight you should increase during pregnancy taking into account the weight of the mother at the time of conception, is the easiest way to avoid gaining more weight than you should, but how much weight should be increased in each trimester of pregnancy?
During pregnancy, about 11 kilos are usually gained, although this number may vary according to each mother’s Body Mass Index.
As a general rule, weight gain should be gradual throughout pregnancy, however specialists recommend distributing the weight gain in each trimester of pregnancy as follows:
- In the first trimester the most common thing is that the pregnant woman barely gains weight, as vomiting tends to have a great impact on the weight during this stage. The recommendation is to gain between 2 and 3 kilos and lose less than 100 gr per week.
- During the second, pregnant women usually gain about 300 grams per week or 1.5 kilograms per month, depending on the mother’s initial weight.
- By the third trimester the weight gain is usually greater than the rest of the pregnancy, and can reach about 3.5 or 4 kilos, although virtually all the weight gained belongs to the baby and the placenta.
Divide your diet into 5 daily meals and include foods rich in calcium and protein.
Eating well and controlling your weight during pregnancy so as not to overweight is extremely important, not only from a physical point of view but also because gaining weight, whether a lot or a little, can affect our health and that of the baby, as well as compromising the correct development of the pregnancy.
To make sure you get all the nutrients you and your baby need for healthy pregnancy development and evolution, we share an example of a pregnancy menu that will help you get an idea of what you need to eat during these nine months to maintain a stable weight.
You’ve probably heard that breakfast is the most important meal of the day, and this trend continues when you’re pregnant. A good menu for pregnant women not to gain weight is not based on prohibitions, but on the invitation to eat in a nutritious and balanced way.
It is normal that due to the large amount of chores we women have today, our breakfast is linked to too much caffeine and energy drinks, but during pregnancy this should be avoided (excess). The following is a good example of a breakfast to avoid gaining too much weight during pregnancy:
- Two slices of whole wheat toast with a little jam (no sugar)
- A cup of milk with a little coffee
- A piece of fruit of your preference. It could be a banana or kiwi.
Mid-morning: An infusion, a fruit juice or skimmed yogurt. A whole-wheat cracker snack, a piece of fruit or a handful of nuts is also a good choice.
Alternatives: We know that one of the most stressful things for mothers during pregnancy is monotony and this should be avoided at breakfast. You can also include a cup of yogurt for breakfast, a cup of cereal such as oatmeal, pancakes with fruit, two or three seeds (almonds, hazelnuts or walnuts), a grilled croissant or a rich omelet.
People generally associate a balanced diet with the prohibition of delicious foods, and this is only a big mistake.
A good menu for lunch during pregnancy may consist of:
- Broccoli sprouts au gratin.
- Grilled Chicken
- Fruit juice
All this can be seasoned with a little grated cheese or olive oil (do not abuse seasoning), with respect to soup, chicken broths and many vegetables are the most nutritious.
Snack: Fruit salad, yogurt with nuts, whole-grain crackers, yogurt with low-calorie cereals and chocolate crackers, turkey and cheese sandwiches, a handful of nuts, among other healthy snacks.
The way you cook is also important: Lunch tends to be one of the hours when we feel most anxious to eat, so the way you cook your food will also give you a different caloric source, for example, while 150 grams of grilled meat provide 140 calories, if we put it in a fried empanada, gives us more than twice as many calories (300 calories).
You see? I don’t know.
That’s why it’s very important to steam, grill or bake instead of fry. That way you’ll be eating healthier.
Don’t eat large amounts at main meals. Eat the right thing and make the desserts as long as possible.
For dinner you can delight in your internal chef or force your husband to do it! In this meal of the day you should not eat too heavy food to not cause uncomfortable gases during the night, that is why a good menu would be the following one:
- A vegetable omelet
- Lettuce and tomato salad
- An infusion (chamomile)
Another alternative are chicken burritos, scrambled vegetables with egg, or boiled potatoes, sandwich of cooked ham and skimmed cheese, scrambled wild asparagus and prawns, mixed salad, vegetable soup, gazpacho, and so on.
Some people are reluctant to eat natural juices at night, if that is your case, you can take some whole-grain crackers with cheese to replace the properties of the fruit.
Healthy foods and recommended amount per day
During pregnancy it is recommended to eat a variety of foods, including all diet groups. Let’s look at the foods you can eat during pregnancy and the recommended portions per day:
- Milk: Only if it is skimmed, skimmed or semi-skimmed is it important to consume about three or four cups a day – to meet your calcium needs! (always pasteurized)
- Yogurt: The yogurt must be pasteurized skim or semi-skimmed and can be eaten once a day.
- Meats: They cannot be lacking due to the contribution of iron but neither should be eaten in excess. Eat two well-cooked pieces of red meat, fish, chicken, and skinless turkey at each meal (raw meats are not recommended).
- Cheese: A piece of cheese can replace a cup of milk, but it should never be larger than a matchbox. Ideally, it should be fresh and low in fat (always pasteurized).
- Cereals: Half a cup of rice, oatmeal or noodles. If you suffer from constipation, you can replace normal cereals with whole grains.
- Eggs: the white is the healthiest part of the egg. They can be eaten up to three times a day to replace meat. The yolk, on the other hand, should only be eaten up to three times a week and should always be cooked.
- Cooked vegetables: Half a cup of cooked vegetables daily (vegetables should always be present in your diet).
- Raw vegetables: One and a half cup daily containing: cabbage, lettuce, spinach, tomato, etc.
- Potatoes: They can replace rice and noodles. It is advisable to consume one the size of an egg.
- Fruits: Two or three pieces of fruit a day. The best are the pear, orange, kiwi and apple.
- Oil: Only a tablespoon and preferably olive oil.
The menu for pregnant women not to gain weight should be rich in folic acid, iron and calcium.
Although the aesthetic reason is one of the reasons is not the most important, and is that the way you feed during pregnancy affects positively or negatively to the baby, it is better that your organs are in an ideal state while it is forming in your body.
It’s no coincidence that doctors obligatorily recommend covering a dose of vitamins, irons, folic acid or calcium, all to help your body be strong for the baby.
What’s forbidden to eat?
Cigarettes and alcohol should certainly disappear from your drinking habits during pregnancy (and even breastfeeding). The consumption of these can lead to physical and mental birth defects, and in the worst case a premature birth or death of the baby at birth.
Doctors also recommend eliminating over-spicy or spicy foods, which can increase the risk of gastritis and heartburn in pregnancy.
On the other hand, the intake of sugar or sweet desserts should be avoided. It is also forbidden to eat raw sausages and fish, recipes that include raw eggs and fried foods.
The ideal is to consume fruits and vegetables, whole grains, limiting the consumption of fast food.
Although it is very likely that the cravings and changes you will experience in your body will make you feel more hungry than usual, you should try not to climb more than 300 grams of pecus per week.
The key to achieving this is to make between 4 and 5 meals a day, 3 main meals and 2 snacks or healthy snacks to alleviate the feeling of hunger and have a balanced diet.
Gaining weight during pregnancy is inevitable, the important thing is to gain well
It is not a diet to lose weight, but rather a menu that helps us to increase kilos properly and maternal stable, ie in our ideal weight in pregnancy.
Let’s look at some simple and effective tips for eating well without gaining more weight during pregnancy:
- Drink plenty of water: During pregnancy it is important to stay hydrated and consume 2 liters of water a day.
- Make four or five meals a day. If you suffer from nausea, vomiting or reflux eat less, but more often will make a difference and help you meet your ideal weight gain.
- Drink more fruits and vegetables. Don’t put a limit on fruits and vegetables, as well as providing a great supply of vitamins and nutrients, are low in calories and have a lot of water.
- Avoid snacking between meals (buns, cakes, soft drinks and sweets are forbidden), but if it causes you something sweet from time to time, choose a small portion.
- Chew slowly: It is normal to feel anxious about wanting to devour all our food, or even feel that we are not satisfied; to combat this we must chew more slowly. In this way our organism will be satiated and we will favour digestion.
- Milk and calcium must also be available. It can be consumed pasteurized without sugar. Milk can be flavored as long as it does not provide calories.
- Exercising like walking, going to the pool or even a little bicycle will help keep you fit even in pregnancy.
- Eat a little of everything: The worst mistake you can make is to eliminate or limit yourself to eating some foods as a “rule”. You can afford some taste or candy per week, in fact you can eat up to 6 times a day in moderate amounts and you won’t have a problem.
As hard as it may be for us to get used to this type of pregnant menu so as not to get fat, it’s all about eating a healthy diet and being aware of what you and your baby need.
We promise you that if you make this menu something interesting, you will surely enjoy having included in your daily diet, ways of eating richer and healthier.
If you have any doubt, consult your doctor about your particular case.