Your body is growing, your belly is expanding and you are feeling as huge as a house. These are the trials and tribulations of pregnancy. While pregnant, the female body requires a larger amount of calories, vitamins and nutrients in order to keep the baby growing and the development of the fetus on track. Pregnancy is not the time to be worried about fitting into that size 2.
The Healthy Pregnancy Diet
A healthy pregnancy diet is one that is safe both during pregnancy and while not pregnant. The diet should consist of a healthy amount of calories, an increase in vitamins and nutrients both from natural sources and daily prenatal vitamin supplementation and at least 64 ounces of water every day. The prenatal vitamin chosen during pregnancy can be started before the baby is conceived in order to build up the natural stores of necessary vitamins and nutrients in the body.
Dieting during pregnancy will not only affect the health of the pregnant woman but the health of the unborn fetus. Without the proper amount of calories, the fetus can suffer from underdevelopment, delays in brain development and possible health concerns after birth.
The pregnant mom will also be affected by too little calories. The body needs calories, or energy, to grow baby and to keep mom moving on a daily basis. With too little calories, the body will focus all of the available energy on baby leaving mom with an increased chance of illness and fatigue.
The Overweight Mom
When a women becomes pregnant while overweight, weight loss may occur during the pregnancy and the mother and baby may maintain excellent health. It is estimated that the female body needs an additional 300 calories every day to keep baby growing on a natural developmental scale. But, if mom was overeating before the pregnancy and decides to adopt a healthier food lifestyle after becoming pregnant, the result may be weight loss during the pregnancy. This weight loss will in no way harm the baby and may make the growth and birth processes easier on both baby and mom.
Preparing for Pregnancy
It is not uncommon for women who want to begin a family to take care of a few body issues before they become pregnant. In addition to adding a prenatal vitamin, some mothers choose to adopt health eating plans and lose a few of those extra pounds before conceiving. Any extra pre-pregnancy weight will increase the added strain on the body during pregnancy. While it is common for women to gain 25 or 30 pounds during pregnancy, adding that weight to an already overweight body can be difficult.
For women who are worried about starting an exercise plan and healthy diet before conception, rest assured these same eating and workout plans can be followed throughout the 40 weeks of pregnancy. Many women do yoga, light aerobics, swim and maintain healthy routines up until they give birth.
While dieting for weight loss during pregnancy is not advised, some mothers may experience weight loss depending on their pre-pregnancy dieting habits. As long as mom and baby are getting the right amount of calories to maintain a healthy growth cycle, the pregnancy should go as planned.