Watching Your Weight While Pregnant?

Julie Ryan Evans
pregnant woman standing in backyard

Photo by Craig Evans

I vividly remember being in downtown Boston on a sunny Sunday afternoon watching a very pregnant woman walk by with a giant pizza, eating a slice straight from the box.

I was in my early 20s and had no desire to have children at that point, but all of a sudden I really wanted to be pregnant. I was so envious of her eating with such abandon and began to fantasize about all the things I would eat when I was pregnant, when I was supposed to gain weight.
Year later, when I finally saw two lines on a pregnancy test, my feast began. I lifted all the restrictions I normally placed on myself and indulged any and all cravings. Bagels (hello, carbs, my old friends), ice cream, frosting, and with my daughter, as many spicy steak tacos from Chipotle as I could get. I got the healthy stuff in, too, but I didn't worry too much about gaining that much weight.
Turns out, I probably should have.

A recent study says that women who gain more weight in the first trimester may be at greater risk for developing gestational diabetes later in pregnancy.

Despite my eating habits, I didn't get gestational diabetes, but the study does provide important information for pregnant women.

While I knew gaining an enormous amount of weight while pregnant wasn't a good thing, I was mostly worried about having to lose it again. Knowing that eating with abandon could really affect the health of the baby is another story and likely would have made me a little more careful about what I ate and how much I gained ... and then perhaps now, 14 months post baby, I wouldn't still be trying to find my pre-baby body.

What's your approach to eating while pregnant? Will this study make you rethink it?

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