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How much weight should I gain during pregnancy?

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How much weight should I gain during pregnancy?

During pregnancy, weight gain is normal. As the baby grows your body changes. Weight gain is due to extra fluid from increased blood volume, amniotic fluid around the baby, the baby itself, the placenta, extra body tissue as your body expands during pregnancy, and extra fat stores, especially towards the end of pregnancy, to provide a buffer to support energy needs after the baby is born. Both gaining too much or too little weight during pregnancy can increase the risk of some adverse birth outcomes and pregnancy complications. These include having a baby that can be either of a high low or high birth weight, gestational diabetes, high blood pressure, pre-eclampsia, and the need for additional interventions during birth. How much weight you gain is influenced by whether you’re having one baby or multiple, and your weight status before pregnancy. This can be measured by Body Mass Index (BMI) (which you can calculate here). Generally, the higher your BMI the less weight you need to gain during pregnancy.

Have you heard some people say ‘now you’re pregnant you’re eating for two’?

This is a myth. For most people, there is no need to increase the amount of food eaten in the first trimester. In the second trimester energy needs do increase, by around an extra 1,260kJ per day (300 Calories), roughly equivalent to a 200g tub of low fat yogurt, with a banana and sunflower seeds. Going up to around 2,000kJ per day (500 Calories) in the third trimester, which might look like 40g of low fat cheese, avocado and tomato on corn thins, and a garden salad with 65g cooked chicken breast.

How much weight gain is appropriate for me during my pregnancy?

It can be hard to locate credible information on nutrition and pregnancy. Even harder if you're from a non-English speaking background. Our team of dietitians and nutritionists have put together a quick reference sheet as a guide to recommended weight gain during pregnancy. This includes a fridge guide to a healthy plate for pregnancy to help with planning healthy balanced meals.

We have also translated this English resource into Chinese (Traditional), and included information relevant to women with Chinese heritage.

Keep in mind that these are general guidelines. Every woman and every pregnancy is different. Talk to your doctor about what’s right for you and your baby. If you have specific nutrition needs or problems then ask to be referred to an Accredited Practising Dietitian (APD).

Find out the recommended weight gain for your pregnancy below:

Your Personal Healthy Eating Quiz

What you eat or don’t eat affects how you look, feel and perform. Take our short quiz to find out what foods you could introduce to help you be your best.

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What is healthy eating?

Eating healthy is making sure you enjoy a wide variety of foods from each of the five major food groups daily, in the amounts recommended. The five major food groups as recommended by the Australian Guide to Healthy Eating are:

  1. vegetables and legumes/bean
  2. fruit
  3. lean meats and poultry, fish, eggs, tofu, nuts and seeds, legumes/beans
  4. grain (cereal) foods, mostly wholegrain and/or high cereal fibre varieties
  5. milk, yoghurt, cheese and/or alternatives, mostly reduced fat.

Foods are grouped together because they provide similar amounts of key nutrients and eating a variety of foods from the list above helps to promote good health and reduce the risk of disease.

How do I improve my diet?

If you want to improve your diet you have come to the right place. By completing the Healthy Eating Quiz you’ll receive instant personalised feedback and a report on your diet quality to highlight any areas where you can improve your overall eating habits. Your score is based on the frequency and variety of the foods consumed from the five major food groups mentioned above. No Money No Time can help you improve your score by providing tips, goals and suggestions. On top of this we will provide quick, cheap and healthy recipes as well as credible answers to diet hacks, myths and FAQ’s.

Is my diet healthy?

Dietary habits are different between people. Some people choose to follow a particular diet (i.e., Keto diet or vegan diet) while some have to make changes due to certain food restrictions or health conditions. If you want to know if what you usually eat is healthy, then do the Healthy Eating Quiz today to give you the answers in less than 10 minutes.

Why is healthy eating important?

Your HEQ score and personalised feedback report is based on the frequency and variety of healthy core foods you usually eat. This is important because no single food contains all the nutrients we need to stay healthy. Some foods are higher in nutrients than others and people who have a lot of variety in the foods they eat are more likely to be healthy and to stay healthy. In other words, if you can eat a large variety of vegetables as opposed to only 2-3 types of vegetables, the benefits are much greater. This type of diet also helps you to feel better, think better and perform better during your usual daily activities.

Take the Healthy Eating Quiz