Weight gain and calorie requirement during pregnancy
Eating for Two – During pregnancy, the woman’s caloric needs increase as energy needs to be absorbed through the diet for the development and care of the child and the mother cot, as well as for the changes in the pregnant woman’s body.
The statement “Man eats for two” therefore applies – but only conditionally. One has to remember that one does not eat for two adults, because the embryo or its development does not need as much energy as one thinks.
The calorie requirement is different in pregnancy for each woman individually. If a woman was rather underweight before pregnancy, a slightly stronger weight gain is necessary than with a normal-weight mother. Of course, it also makes a difference whether the coming mother is more likely to have a sedentary or physically demanding activity. So the calorie requirement varies from day to day. Therefore, the data on calorie requirements during pregnancy are rough approximations.
facts and figures
The calorie requirement increases only in pregnancy by 15-25%. These are calculated according to the “basic calorie requirement” of the mother – ie, the need, which is at rest, between 200 and 300 kilocalories (kcal). On average, pregnant women need an additional 255 kcal per day. For most women the daily energy demand is between 2,200 and 2,400 kcal. In the first third of pregnancy (1st trimester: 1st-12th week of pregnancy) the calorie requirement is the lowest. During this time the weight gain of normal-weight women should be only 1-2 kg on average. After this, a weight gain of 0.3-0.4 kg per week is normal.
The increase in weight during pregnancy depends on the dietary condition of pregnant women (BMI) before pregnancy.
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Weight gain during pregnancy
Depending on the state of nutrition before pregnancy, the Research Institute for Kidney Nutrition (Dortmund) provides a recommended weight gain during pregnancy.
Underweight (BMI: under 18.5): 12.5 – 18.0 kg weight gain
Normal weight (BMI: 18.5-24.9): 11.5 – 16.0 kg weight gain
Overweight (BMI: over 25): 7 – 11.5 kg weight gain
The energy requirement is more strongly increased in the case of multiple pregnancies (for example in twins). A weight gain between 16 and 20 kg can then be necessary with normal weight women.
50-60% of the calories should be taken during pregnancy over carbohydrates such as cereals, bread, noodles or rice. The full grain variant should be preferred.
In the case of fats, the spirits divide: the opinions fluctuate between shares of 15-35%. 15% of the daily energy should be absorbed via protein (e.g., milk, yogurt, fish or meat). This does not mean that you should eat 50-60% carbohydrate, 15% protein and 15-35% fat. Fat contains more calories than carbohydrates and protein.
quality not quantity
Calorie counting is usually not necessary during pregnancy. Only if you have problems with the weight before pregnancy or too little or too much during pregnancy, you should take a look at the daily calorie intake. For all other women: listen to your own body and take both hunger and satiety feeling seriously. In addition, it is mainly important what you eat and not how much you eat. Low energy sources, foods rich in vitamins and minerals, such as vegetables and fruit, should be the top priority. Only afterwards are foods with higher carbohydrate, protein and fat content.
Calorie requirement of overweight women in pregnancy
Overweight pregnant women should not increase as much as normal or underweight mothers during pregnancy. The daily intake of calorie intake can be reduced by eating healthier. But pregnancy is not the right time for a weight loss. Overweight women should therefore try to lose weight before pregnancy occurs during a planned pregnancy. It is important to continue eating enough vitamins and minerals. Above all, the folic acid stores should not be plundered before pregnancy, since folic acid is necessary especially in the first period of pregnancy for the development of the embryo. Also the adequate filling of the iron stores should be paid particular attention with a reduction diet before the pregnancy.
Read also this article of calorie counter for pregnancy on http://www.sawt-alhaq.com
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