Tips For Avoiding Pregnancy Weight Gain
“Many women put on most of their pregnancy weight gain during the first three months,” says Aisling Connolly, Clinics Director for Motivation Weight Management.
“This is followed by further growth until about 32 weeks, before slowing down again for the last few weeks before birth.
Average weight gain works out at about 6½lb / 2.9kg in the first 20 weeks, then about 1lb / 0.45kg per week, resulting in a total expected weight gain* of almost two stone or 12.7 kilos.”
Try these tips to ensure your weight gain goes on the baby– and not you!
Hi! I’m Aisling Connolly, Clinics Direction here at Motivation Weight Management. Over the course of my career at Motivation I’ve followed the Motivation Pregnancy Programme during the three pregnancies of my daughters, now aged 17, 13 and 11.
In that time I’ve learned how to manage my weight during pregnancy and if you follow the tips below you’ll find it much easier to manage your weight too.
As an expectant mum your main weight management goal should be to avoid putting on any weight yourself. Any weight gain should be due to the weight of your baby, along with placenta, amniotic fluid, uterus, blood volume, fluid retention, breasts and fat stores for breastfeeding.
If you are very lean, a 30lb weight gain would be appropriate. If you are of normal weight, a 25lb gain is recommended. If you are overweight, you should aim to gain no more than 20lbs.
Motivation’s unique approach to looking at not just what their clients are eating, but why they eat it, is what makes the programme a success.
Many women may have that mindset of needing to ‘eat for two’ or say ‘I’m going to put weight on anyway’. And, one example are ginger nut biscuits. These are sometimes recommended to ease nausea while pregnant but unfortunately, many women may end up eating the packet of biscuits instead of just one or two!
The Motivation Pregnancy Programme advises eating healthily every 3-4 hours, a similar pattern to how you would feed your baby.
It is important to realise the Motivation pregnancy eating plan isn’t a ‘diet’. You’re eating what you would eat if you were following a a normal healthy diet.
During pregnancy, a recommended increase of 300 calories per day is advised to support the growth of the baby. This is catered for in our pregnancy plans. It is all about eating a balanced diet and maintaining your weight as the baby continues to develop.
Because I was eating every 3-4 hours, I wasn’t hungry, I had great energy, I didn’t get cravings and I gained only baby weight.
Most importantly, I followed the advice recommended on the Motivation mental weight analysis report regarding the habits and behaviours to work on and I used the Motivation audio programmes to help me keep a positive healthy mental attitude.
Here Are My 6 Tips For Avoiding Pregnancy Weight Gain
Try the tips below to ensure your weight gain goes on the baby – and not you!
- Healthy balance – Remember that everything you put in your mouth is being fed to your baby, so talk to a nutritionist or professional weight management adviser about following a healthy and balanced nutritional plan during pregnancy.
- Keep a food diary – This ensures your diet meets your nutritional needs and those of the baby.
- Avoid certain foods during pregnancy – These include liver (rich in vitamin A, which may be harmful to the baby), cod liver oil and similar supplements, raw eggs (including homemade mayonnaise), undercooked meat, and unpasteurised milk and products made from it, such as yogurt and cheese. Soft cheeses such as Brie, Camembert or blue cheese, should be avoided, as should unwashed fruit and vegetables and products containing nuts, to guard against allergies. If in doubt talk to your nutritionist or GP.
- Consider including protein supplements in your plan – These can be a very effective way of eliminating extreme tiredness, cravings or nausea. Protein is an essential building block for lean muscle tissue, so supplements are a help to build the baby’s heart, muscle and tissue.
- Don’t worry about the scales during pregnancy – Focus instead on your attitudes and behaviour, with the aim of avoiding emotional eating habits that will result in you putting on more weight than you, or your baby, need.
- Keep positive – A positive and healthy attitude will be a great help to you throughout pregnancy and during labour.
Also, check out our podcast – How To Prevent Weight Gain During Pregnancy
NOTE: *These are approximate figures and will vary from woman to woman and from pregnancy to pregnancy. For more specific details, please consult your doctor or gynecologist.