We all know that gaining weight while pregnant is perfectly normal and healthy, and necessary for the development of your child. But it’s often difficult to know whether you are putting too much weight on too quickly, and whether this can be controlled.
Gaining weight can be particularly stressful and can have a profound effect on you emotionally as you begin to feel overweight and unattractive, and problems like sagging breasts, acne and cellulite often rear their ugly heads during pregnancy. You want to feel great again but you want to make sure you do the best for your baby.
So can you really lose weight safely during pregnancy?
Let me first stress that pregnancy is definitely not the time to go on a weight-loss diet. Restricting your food intake is potentially hazardous to you and your developing baby. What we are concerned with here is trying to avoid putting on excess weight, and ultimately make us and the baby feel better. Eating healthily and taking regular exercise will help to keep the weight gain to what is necessary for the healthy development of your baby.
In terms of ball park figures, the average weight gain for a full term pregnancy is 25-30 pounds, which includes the increase in the mother’s blood volume, the size of the uterus, the placenta, various fluids and the baby. Let’s say that this pregnancy ended in the birth of an average sized baby of around seven and a half pounds, then the mother would need to lose around five pounds or so in order to be back at here pre-pregnant weight after the first few months. These figures will obviously vary depending on many factors but are useful as an average guide. Consult your doctor for advice on your optimum weight.
Cravings are one of the most difficult things to deal with during pregnancy and can be a major cause of excessive weight gain. Finding a way to deal with them can be crucial to controlling weight gain during pregnancy. It is possible to find certain foods that can actually reduce cravings, and the puffy face and varicose veins that are common during pregnancy.
Eating food that doesn’t have too much glucose to be absorbed by your body will mean that your blood sugar levels will not increase, thereby stabilizing your energy and remaining at a constant level, which is good for your mood of course.
Green tea can also reduce your cravings and is a powerful antioxidant – some 100 times more effective than vitamin C.
Regular exercise will help keep you energized during your pregnancy, keep you toned and importantly will actually make your labor easier. Swimming is excellent as it gives you welcome buoyancy as well as muscle toning and stamina. Check for special classes for pregnant women at your local leisure center, and if you have other kids why not take them with you. Simply walking regularly can also do wonders and help to avoid the aches and pains common with pregnancy.