Being pregnant is synonymous with piling on kilos, but what if you notice that you’re actually losing weight instead? If you’re a first time mom-to-be, a drop in the numbers on your weighing scale might worry or even confuse you. But here’s something that you should know - losing weight when you’re expecting is normal, however it depends on which stage of pregnancy you are in.
When is it normal to lose pregnancy weight?
Doctors say that a healthy woman ideally must put on about 10-12 kgs through pregnancy. Most of this weight comes from the baby, the blood, tissue fluids and the fat stored in the body. This weight gain begins gradually from the first trimester. But if you’re suffering from nausea and morning sickness, you might not gain any weight or even lose weight, thanks (or no thanks) to the heightened sense of smell and the loss of appetite.
“Weight loss is not uncommon in pregnancy, especially in the first trimester. In previously overweight women, the fat reserves of the body may be used up for providing nutrition to the growing baby, so they don’t perceive any weight gain. If additionally, they don’t increase the quantity of diet during pregnancy, they may experience weight loss,” says Dr Papia Goswami Mukherjee, consultant gynaecologist from Navi Mumbai.
Will my baby be affected if I lose weight during pregnancy?
Fortunately, no. In the first trimester, your baby is too tiny to draw out a large amount of nutrients. Your fat reserves are enough for her/him to grow. “The body’s first priority is to nourish the baby and thus it uses maternal reserves,” adds Dr Mukherjee. However, if you are unable to keep any food down due to severe nausea and morning sickness, consult a doctor.
What if I’m overweight and want to lose weight during pregnancy? How do I achieve that without harming my baby?
During pregnancy, your body stores fat reserves to prepare for delivery and nursing. Losing some weight during pregnancy if you’re overweight might be beneficial, but it has to be achieved through the right diet and exercise. Weight loss by starvation or dieting will strip your body of its nutrients and increase your risk of having a premature baby. The aim is to put on the right amount of ‘healthy weight.’
Here are few ways in which you can manage your weight during pregnancy -
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