Updated Prenatal Directory Joomag Prenatal Directory Update July 2017 - Page 12

Selkirk Medical Group Information for Parents -to-be ______________________________________________________________________________________________ Diet and weight gain in pregnancy A balanced healthy diet in pregnancy and breastfeeding is important for the health of mom and baby. A healthy weight gain in pregnancy for women of normal weight is between 25-35 lbs (11.5-16kg). How much should I eat in pregnancy? It is important to eat three meals and at least two snacks daily. Pregnancy leads to higher sugar and insulin levels (hormone that removes sugar from the blood) immediately after a meal. Then the body rapidly changes to low sugar levels (a fasting state). Skipping meals or taking long breaks between meals, can cause health problems in the pregnancy. What should I eat in pregnancy? Control of normal blood sugar levels in pregnancy is important to prevent gestational diabetes and other health risks. The best way to control blood sugars is to reduce or eliminate foods that convert quickly to sugar in the bloodstream (foods with a high glycemic index). Such foods include: sugar, sweets, treats and baked goods; simple carbohydrates (white bread, white rice); and juice, pop and milk. Rather it is important to eat foods with a low glycemic index which are: complex carbohydrates (brown rice, whole grains); fruits and vegetables; protein sources; and healthy fats. Photo credit: Thomas van Ardenne via Visual Hunt / CC BY-NC-ND How much weight should I gain in pregnancy? Weight gain and weight issues are understandably sensitive and complex topics for most women, how- ever your doctor will regularly monitor weight gain and discuss diet in the pregnancy. During the second and third trimester of pregnancy it is suggested you need an extra 340-450 calories, which is really only on e extra healthy snack a day. The mentality of ``eating for two`` is discouraged. The new recommendations for weight gain in pregnancy are: 28-40 lbs (12.5-18kg) if underweight; 25-35lbs (11.5- 16kg) for normal weight; and 15-25lbs (7-11.5kg) for women who are overweight. This equates to gaining half a pound to a pound a week in the 2 nd and 3 rd trimesters. Can I exercise in pregnancy? It is recommended that all pregnant women maintain regular, moderate exercise throughout the pregnancy. Maintaining exercise programs that were started before pregnancy is good, although no new sports should be started. Listen to your body carefully for signs of tiredness, weakness or difficulty breathing and SLOW DOWN. If discomforts of pregnancy do not allow you to do your regular exercise routine, try other activities. Increasing activity after a meal through a short walk or activity around the house can help regulate your blood sugar levels. 10