There’s a common belief that when you’re pregnant, you’re eating for two. But even though you might be tempted to eat twice as much, it’s not what the doctor ordered. Eating twice as much doesn’t double your chances of having a healthy baby. What it will do is make you gain more weight during pregnancy than you need to, putting you at risk for pregnancy complications.
A big part of staying at a healthy weight during your pregnancy is just being aware of what you’re eating. So what we wanted to do is walk you through just a few tips that can help you stay healthy and avoid unnecessary weight gain.
How Much Do You Need to Eat?
So, first of all, how many calories do actually need in pregnancy? There’s kind of a misconception about eating for two. You’re not eating for two adults here; you’re eating for another very very small human being.
If you’re pregnant, please talk to your doctor about this before following any of this advice. So with very generic terms, how many calories you need will differ depending on if you’re overweight to begin with or underweight to begin with. In your first trimester, you actually don’t really need any extra calories than what you’re currently consuming because your baby is so small. In your second trimester, you need about three hundred extra calories and then about four hundred extra calories for the third trimester. To put that in perspective that’s roughly equivalent to an extra sandwich not like a gallon of ice cream!
If you get really bad acid reflux, try to eat more frequently and much smaller meals. You might feel like making tons of meals is too much work. So, try finding all of your favorite healthy options and have them at the ready so that you can kind of snack on them throughout the day.
Break up your lunch into two separate meals and have one at noon and another one at 2:00 or something like that. It just makes it a lot easier instead of waiting until you’re like starving.
The 80/20 Rule
Try to follow the 80/20 rule: try and eat really healthy 80% of the time and 20% of the time be easy on yourself. Don’t let yourself get too hungry because this is when you reach for all the candies, chocolates, chips and soda and whatever else.
Stock up on food that’s quick and easy to grab instead. Try to maintain your blood sugar level as much as you possibly can, by making sure that you have snacks that are ready to eat. Bring them to work with you and have them at your desk, ready for when you do get really hungry. Try packing veggies, an apple, almonds, or another quick and easy snack.
It’s really important to make sure to drink lots of water. Sometimes our bodies get confused, and we think that our thirst is actually our hunger. But actually we’re just really thirsty. So having a glass of water before you eat is smart, whether it’s lemon water or throwing a cucumber or orange slice in.
Drink water, then wait about 10 minutes or so and then if you’re still hungry, having something really helps. Plus, as a pregnant woman, you need to be extremely hydrated at all times. It helps your body, and it’s also really important for your baby’s health.