You’ve probably heard that pregnant women eat for two, right? This is another myth spread by moms who can’t resist the temptation to eat more than recommended.
What may happen is that some women feel more hungry than usual, but it is important to remember that excessive weight gain in pregnancy can bring risks to the health of mother and baby.
Why should pregnant women NOT eat for two?
During pregnancy, the body absorbs more nutrients and therefore, by doubling the amount of food, the mother can gain excess weight, which is also harmful to the baby.
According to the Institute of Medicine (IOM), pregnant women who have gained more weight than recommended may have children with higher blood pressure and blood sugar levels than the children of mothers who have stayed within the weight range. Interestingly, the same adverse effects were found in pregnant women who gained little weight.
What is the ideal pregnancy weight?
The calculation of optimal weight gain during pregnancy takes into account a woman’s body mass index (BMI) before she becomes pregnant. Depending on the initial nutritional status of the pregnant woman (low weight, adequate weight, overweight or obesity), there is a recommended weight gain range per trimester.
To get an idea, a gain of 1 to 2 kg is expected at the end of the third month of pregnancy. In the remaining months, the gain is approximately 450 grams per week. If a woman’s BMI when she becomes pregnant is normal, it is acceptable for her to gain between 11 and 15 kg during pregnancy.
For mothers who consider themselves under or overweight for a healthy pregnancy, it is best to talk to your doctor and ask for advice.
How to eat healthily during pregnancy?
Your baby is what you eat! That’s why it’s vital that the mother-to-be consumes all the nutrients she needs without exaggerating. Prefer unprocessed foods, in the form closest to your natural state such as rice, wholemeal loaves, fruits, vegetables, natural juices and homemade food. Oh, and don’t forget to drink plenty of water!
Be careful with fat, oil and sugar. At snack time, you can choose yogurts, fruits, nuts and chestnuts to kill your hunger in a healthy way. But you don’t need neatness, did you see Mommy? The important thing is to be aware of a healthy diet and eliminate this myth that pregnant women eat for two.
In the expert’s words, Dr. Gilberto Mello explains how to make food an ally in this period. Play it!
Want to know more?
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