All About Pregnancy & Weight Gain (Infographic)

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Whether we like it or not, pregnancy and weight gain go hand in hand. Each woman’s experience and weight gain will depend on a wide variety of factors. Follow along to find out everything you’ll need to know about weight gain during pregnancy.

How much weight will I gain during pregnancy?

As with many things, each person reacts differently to circumstances, and pregnancy is no different. While there is no standard set of pounds each person should or shouldn’t gain, there are recommended guidelines. For instance, if you’re overweight going into pregnancy, you shouldn’t gain as much as someone at a healthy weight. By referring to the BMI or body mass index, we can determine whether or not an individual's weight is healthy or if they're considered overweight.

Pregnancy Weight Gain Chart from Blank Children's

Your BMI & Baby Weight Gain

First things first, find out what your BMI says about you. Reach out to your doctor to assist in determining your ideal weight. Once you know this, determining how much weight gain you may experience during pregnancy will be easier. Because everyone’s bodies are different, it’s important to understand your current BMI and what sort of weight gain you may experience during pregnancy. Knowing what to expect will make weight management much more attainable. Below you will see the recommended weight gain depending on your current BMI.

Underweight (BMI less than 18.5)
28-40 lbs. 
Normal weight (BMI if 19-24)
 25-35 lbs.
Overweight (BMI of 25-29  15-25 lbs.
Obese weight (BMI of 30+)  11-20 lbs.



Pregnancy Weight Gain & Distribution Chart

We often think about baby weight being one of two things, our baby & our body. While this is true, it is important to know where the distribution takes place. All too often, we think of weight gain as a negative but it is completely healthy to gain weight during pregnancy. Knowing where our weight is distributed helps to make each pound feel less of a burden and more normal in the pregnancy process. Here’s the skinny on what pounds are distributed where during your pregnancy!

Placenta 2-3 lbs.
Amniotic fluid 2-3 lbs.
Breast tissue 2-3 lbs.
Blood 4 lbs.
Stored fat 5-9 lbs.
Uterus 2-5 lbs.
Baby 6-8 lbs.
Total 23-35 lbs.

Be sure to speak with your physician to ensure that your pregnancy weight gain is healthy for both you and your baby.

Overweight & Pregnant? What are the risks?

You’re more likely to have the following complications if you are overweight during your pregnancy:

  • High blood pressure 
  • Preeclampsia
  • Blood clotting
  • Gestational diabetes

Maintaining a healthy weight before and during pregnancy helps the entire birthing process. It’s even helpful in shedding the weight post baby.

Post-Baby Weight Loss

It is important to know that losing weight post baby is not going to happen overnight. As with any weight loss, it takes time to lose excess weight. Here are several tips to help shed the unwanted “baby weight” post pregnancy!

  • Adjust your diet: During pregnancy, our diets change to accommodate both our bodies and our growing child. Of course, proper nutrition is crucial during pregnancy but it’s just as crucial afterward.
  • Exercise: Knowing when to start exercising after pregnancy depends entirely on the birthing process. If you had no complications during pregnancy, light exercise (walking) could be done as early as you see fit. However, if you did experience complications with either vaginal or C-Section, contact your physician for their exercise recommendation.

For more information regarding pregnancy weight gain and more, reach out to the experts at UnityPoint Clinic. We’re dedicated to helping each mom throughout their entire birthing process. Be sure to register for our Oh, Baby! event, a free expo offering a variety of educational sessions, knowledgeable vendors, interactive exhibits and great giveaways!

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