Pregnancy Weight Gain & Weight Loss: What’s “Normal”?

Heidi Klum
Credits: Agostini, Kramer/Getty

New moms love to compare notes on how much weight they gained during pregnancy. Those that gain the least seem to take pride in knowing that they’re a few pounds closer to regaining their pre-pregnancy figure and those that gain the most are left feeling like they spent the better part of 9 months overindulging. But pregnancy and weight gain do go hand-in-hand.

Nicole Kidman
Credits: Truscello/WireImage; Corkery for News

What makes many new moms question themselves is what they see and read in the tabloids. Hollywood stars and super models showing off their fabulous svelte figures just weeks after giving birth. Nicole Kidman spotted 10 days after delivering without a mere bump in sight, Heidi Klum hitting the Victoria’s Secret runway less than 2 months out of the hospital, Kourtney Kardashian posing for a bikini cover shot 4 months later and Angelina Jolie delivering twins without skipping a beat.

Angelina Jolie
Credits: Hogan, Brown/Getty

The fact is, women who gain too little weight during pregnancy run the risk of delivering a low birth weight baby and that can lead to long-term developmental consequences. The notion of “eating for two” may be too generous, but adding an additional 300 calories to your daily diet will help feed your body the nutrients it needs for your baby to grow without packing on the pounds. Eating a healthy diet and staying fit should be the goal, not dieting and excessive exercise – that can wait!

Kourtney Kardashian
Credits: Harrison/Getty; LifeStyle Weekly

Personally, I have experienced pregnancy 3 times and gained between 32 – 35 pounds each time. Although I didn’t love leaving the hospital still wearing my maternity jeans, I knew it was only temporary. Luckily, I did lose all the weight following each pregnancy, but it did take me a good 9 months to lose what it took me 9 months to gain!

Pre-pregnancy weight Recommended weight gain
Underweight (BMI less than 18.5) 28 to 40 pounds (about 13 to 18 kilograms)
Normal weight (BMI 18.5 to 24.9) 25 to 35 pounds (about 11 to 16 kilograms)
Overweight (BMI 25 to 29.9) 15 to 25 pounds (about 7 to 11 kilograms)
Obese (BMI 30 or greater) 11 to 20 pounds (about 5 to 9 kilograms)

— Ilaria


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