Gaining a healthy amount of weight means having a healthy pregnancy. An average woman should gain between 25 and 35 pounds for a normal pregnancy. If you’re underweight before pregnancy, you might gain as much as 28 to 40 pounds, and if you’re overweight before your pregnancy, you should gain between 15 and 25 pounds. When you’re pregnant with twins, however, you should add about 10 pounds to these figures.
Pregnancy weight is made up of a variety of factors. For example, you’ve got about three to four pounds of weight gain in blood. You’ve got about two pounds, on average, in your breasts. The uterus grows by a couple of pounds. You’ll have between two and four pounds of amniotic fluid. About four or five pounds is made up of retained water. The placenta will be two to three pounds. You’ll have about seven to 10 pounds of stored nutrients, fats and proteins. About 10 to 14 pounds will then be your baby. If you have twins, this number will usually be a little higher, but your babies are likely to weigh less each.
Gaining too much weight during your pregnancy can cause complications of the pregnancy, and can also make it more difficult to take off the extra weight after your pregnancy. Gaining too little weight during pregnancy can also be harmful; It may be a sign that you and your babies are not getting the important nutrients that you all need. In addition, your body needs to gain a certain amount of weight to prepare for breastfeeding.
Just because you are "eating for three" doesn’t mean that you have to overeat during pregnancy. On the other hand, it is important to get the right kinds of nutrients that you and your babies need. Eating a balanced diet during your pregnancy, with a wide variety of foods, will help you to gain weight at a steady rate and provide the calories and nutrients that your babies need to grow. Gaining a healthy amount of weight at a steady pace can lower your risk for shortness of breath, indigestion, stretch marks, backaches, fatigue, hemorrhoids and varicose veins. Staying within the guidelines that your health practitioner gives you for weight gain will help ensure that you have healthy babies and a hassle free delivery. It will also make it easier to shed any excess weight after you delivery your new babies.