When you’re expecting, some weight gain isn’t only healthy but necessary. According to doctors, the average healthy weight women should gain during pregnancy is about 25 to 35 pounds, reports HealthyWomen.org. But eating to your heart’s content isn’t smart either. The age-old advice of “eating for two” is inaccurate and outdated. Too much weight gain can increase risks for gestational diabetes, elevated blood pressure and even miscarriage. Keep from gaining too much weight during pregnancy by following these 10 everyday tips:
Eat a Good Breakfast
Skipping meals means you’ll be more likely to overeat later. Instead, get in the habit of eating consistently, even if they’re smaller meals or you don’t feel hungry. Plus, after six to eight hours of sleep, your baby needs food first thing in the morning.
Be picky about what you eat. Choose foods both low in fat and sugar and high in fiber. You may crave sugar, but realize some foods are empty calories and will only make you hungrier. Practice moderation, and read labels for fat and sugar content so you can be careful about your calorie intake. Eat mindfully and savor every bite!
While grocery shopping and planning for the day, buy and prepare healthy foods and snacks. Plan meals so you’ll be more likely to control calories and eat nutrient-rich foods that will help your baby. According to FirstResponse.com, the first few weeks of pregnancy are critical to fetal development. The earlier you adjust your diet, the better it’ll be for your and your baby’s overall health and weight.
Even if you’re eating out, ask how your food is being prepared. When possible, avoid fried food and instead ask for your meal to be broiled, baked or steamed thereby eliminating certain fatty foods from your diet while you’re pregnant.
How many hours you spend snoozing can affect your metabolism. A small study published in the journal of Annals of Internal Medicine shows that the body of a healthier person is at a higher risk of being insulin resistant with 4 1/2 hours of sleep a night for four nights. Being resistant to insulin is a common precursor of weight gain, diabetes and other serious health problems. To avoid unnecessary weight gain, get enough consistent sleep.
Shop on a Full Stomach
Go to the grocery store with a shopping list and a full stomach. If you have a problem with over-indulging yourself, take a friend or partner to help keep you true to your list.
Keeping off excess weight doesn’t require long workouts at the gym. However, it does require physical activity. Park farther away and walk. Take the stairs instead of the elevator. Even minor exercises like this can help prevent too much weight gain.
Combat Sugar Cravings
Reach for fruit when you’re craving a sweet treat, or combine foods to satisfy that craving without going overboard. For example, mix chocolate chips with nuts or dip fruit in chocolate sauce instead of eating it plain. When the craving hits, enjoy a smaller serving without feeling completely denied.
Don’t let dehydration disguise itself as hunger. Even if you think you’re drinking enough, feeling hungry after eating nutrient-rich food is an indicator that you aren’t.
Avoid Bad Influences
Don’t eat to please anyone, including pestering grandmas and people who wish they could eat everything, so they encourage you to instead. Avoid tempting situations. Consider eating before attending social gatherings so you won’t be as likely to eat something you don’t want to.