Answer: The pre pregnancy weight plays a major role in determining the inevitable weight gain during pregnancy. Ideal weight gain according to Indian standards is:
Pre Pregnancy. Total Weight Gainin
BMI (kg/m2). 9 months (kgs)
Underweight (< 19.8) 12.5 – 18
Normal weight 11.5 – 16
(19.8 – 23)
Overweight. 7 – 11.5
(>23 and < 24.9)
Obese (>25) 6
The optimal weight gain is about 11 – 13 kgs.
The ideal weight gain in first trimester is 900 – 1800 gms.
Followed by 450 gms weight gain every week.
Appropriate calorie intake in combination of exercise keeps the mother and baby healthy.
1.In first trimester you needs only 50 – 100 calories extra than normal. 2.Additional 200 calories in second trimester
3.300 calories in third trimester is advised.
Healthy food choices:
Select whole grain cereals like whole wheat flour, broken wheat, brown rice, whole wheat pasta, jowar or nachni. The high fiber content in whole grains relieves constipation and gives feeling of fullness. The crackers like toast, khakra or bread, used to treat nausea should be made from whole grain cereals.
A power packed food group like dals and pulses fulfills the daily protein requirement of the body. Overeating of pulses may lead to flatulence and give discomfort to mothers. Thus, use cooked pulses and dals in moderation.
Consume at least 3 – 4 servings of low fat dairy products. Milk and milk products like curd, buttermilk or paneer nourish the body with calcium, phosphorus and proteins.
Dry fruits such as walnuts dates and almonds are better choices over cholesterol raising dry fruits like cashew nuts and pistachios. The omega 3 in nuts maintains hormonal balance,reduces the stress levels, blood clotting and nerve transmission in mother. The fetus also benefits by improving the cognitive function and immunity post-delivery.
5.Meat, Poultry and fish.
Low fat lean cuts of chicken, low fat fishes and egg whites are superior options than red meat. Non vegetarian food supplies the first class proteins, iron, omega 3, calcium and traces of vit B12. All these nutrients boost immunity and maintain gut integrity.
6.Fruits and Vegetables.
Include plenty of varieties of fresh fruits and vegetables throughout the day. Minimum of 5 – 6 servings will provide adequate vitamins, minerals and fiber required during the pregnancy. Icing on the cake is these are low in calories and fat too. The sweet tooth craving can be satisfied with a sweet fruit like a mango or a banana.
7.Oil,Ghee and Butter.
Use restricted amount of oil, ghee and butter. If taken in excess can lead to variety of health issues. A MUFA rich groundnut oil or rice bran oil or olive oil can be used in moderation. 15 – 20 gms of visible oil is enough for the day