How Much Weight Gain is Normal during Pregnancy?

How Much Weight Gain is Normal during Pregnancy?

Pregnancy is a time where the expectant mother tends to gain weight throughout the three trimesters, so it is important to know how much weight is normal during each trimester. Pregnancy weight gain has a direct impact on the health of the mother and the developing baby. At the beginning of pregnancy, check your Body Mass Index (BMI) and continue a healthy weight gain schedule accordingly.

What is BMI?

It is the measure of body fat based on the height and weight of adult men and women to determine whether they are underweight, normal, overweight, obese or morbidly obese. Based on the BMI, pregnant women will be suggested to watch over their weight gain and have a healthy balanced diet. BMI is simple to calculate: Divide the person’s weight in kilograms by height in metres squared or you can find any online BMI calculator to measure the value.

Pregnancy weight gain

On an average, a pregnant women can gain 12 kg (8-16 kg) based on their BMI. This is not just the weight of the baby but also accounts for amniotic fluid, placenta, increased fat stores, blood etc. Here’s how the ideal pregnancy weight is distributed:

  • Baby: 2 – 3.4 kg
  • Amniotic fluid: 4 – 5.9 kg
  • Placenta: 0.5 kg
  • Uterus: 0.5 – 1.1 kg
  • Breasts: 0.5 – 1.4 kg
  • Increased volume of blood: 1 – 1.8 kg
  • Fat stores: 1 – 3.6 kg

How much weight should I gain?

Here is the pregnancy weight gain chart based on your BMI:

Early Pregnancy BMI (< 10 weeks)

Overall Pregnancy Weight Gain Range

Underweight   <18.5

12.5 – 18 kg

Normal weight  18.5 – 24.9

11.5 – 16 kg

Over weight  25.0 – 29.9

7 kg – 11.5 kg

Obese  > 30.0

5 kg – 9 kg

 

 

Based on the BMI values, pregnancy weight changes from one pregnant mother to another. An ideal pregnancy weight gain includes 2-3 kg increase in the first 20 weeks then 0.5 kg every week till the baby is due, which comes to around 12 – 14 kg in total. However, it differs in reality due to pregnancy symptoms, body type, individual’s lifestyle etc. Many women tend to put on weight in the first 20 weeks or lose weight due to morning sickness and poor appetite. After 20 weeks, the weight may increase gradually followed by losing 1 or 2 kg prior to labour. On an average, a woman’s overall weight gain during pregnancy ranges between 8 – 20 kg based on her body type and diet.

Consult your Medical Practitioner

During regular antenatal checkups, your gynaecologist will check the body weight which will help to suggest a good diet, fitness regime and nutritional supplements. Keep a check on the normal weight gain and do not stress about your weight. Be active, eat healthy, sleep early and follow your doctor’s advice to keep your pregnancy weight gain on the healthier side.

 

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