Unless you are underweight, pregnancy is one of the only times in life when it’s not only acceptable to gain weight but healthy. However, not all weight gain during pregnancy is normal or healthy. If you’re unsure about what constitutes healthy weight gain during pregnancy and what constitutes unhealthy weight gain, you’ve come to the right place and you’re certainly not alone. Pregnancy is a challenging time as it is. And, with all of the changes in your body, it’s difficult to wrap your mind around managing your weight as well! That’s why the team of midwives and obstetricians at University Park Obstetrics and Gynecology in Bradenton have set out to help.

What does healthy weight gain during pregnancy look like?

In general, it is considered healthy to gain between 25 and 35 pounds during pregnancy; however, this depends on what your weight is before you get pregnant, as well as your body type. In general, women who are tall and lean tend to gain less weight than women who are shorter with more pear-shaped body types. Here are the typical recommendations for weight gain during pregnancy based on your pre-pregnancy weight:

  • Ideal weight – If when you got pregnant, your weight was close to ideal, you’ll aim to gain the standard 25 to 35 pounds.
  • Slightly overweight – If you are starting pregnancy slightly overweight, you’ll probably want to gain anywhere between 20 and 25 pounds.
  • Obese – If you start pregnancy when you’re obese, you’ll want to gain fewer than 20 pounds.
  • Underweight – If you started your pregnancy below your ideal weight, you’ll need to gain anywhere from 30 to 40 pounds.

Please keep in mind that these are general estimates and that you’ll want to consult with your doctor when determining how much weight you should aim to gain during your pregnancy. It’s also important to note that if you are looking healthy and feeling healthy, and your baby is developing at a healthy rate, your weight is probably right on track.

How quickly should you gain weight?

In addition to paying attention to how much weight you gain during pregnancy, it’s also smart to monitor when you’re gaining the weight. Here’s a quick look at how quickly you should be gaining weight during pregnancy:

  • During the first trimester, if you are already at an ideal weight, you’ll want to gain around four pounds. If you’re underweight, aim to gain five pounds during the first trimester, and if you’re overweight, aim to gain around three pounds.
  • After the first trimester, it’s healthy to gain around a pound a week. If you’re underweight, aim for a little over a pound, and if you’re overweight, aim for a little less than a pound.
  • During the last month of pregnancy, your weight gain will probably slow down quite a bit, even though your baby is still gaining weight. Typically, women only gain between one and two pounds throughout the last month, but it can vary.

Please make sure that you consult your doctor about how much weight you should gain and how quickly you should be gaining it, as the information provided in this blog is just general. In our next blog, we’ll be going over a few things you can do to avoid gaining too much weight during pregnancy.