Weight Watchers is a weight-loss program that has been around since the 1960s. The program offers tools, motivation and education to help participants in making the right decisions about food and exercise. If you are trying to get to a healthy weight before you conceive or want to lose weight after delivery, Weight Watchers can help. However, if you are currently pregnant, Weight Watchers is not for you. The program does not offer any services to pregnant women.
Calories Needed During Pregnancy
Pregnancy is not the time to start restricting your caloric intake. Babies need nutrients from your diet to grow and develop. According to the Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, if you are of normal weight and engage in physical activity less than 30 minutes weekly, you will need approximately 1,800 calories in the first trimester, 2,200 in the second trimester and 2,400 in the third trimester. These calories should come from nutrient-dense foods such as fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean protein and healthy fats.
The newest weight gain guidelines for pregnancy were introduced in 2009 from the Institute of Medicine, or IOM. Recommended weight gain during pregnancy is based on your weight before pregnancy. Using this weight, your doctor can calculate your pre-pregnancy body mass index, or BMI. A BMI between 18.5 to 24.9 is considered normal weight. If you were normal weight before becoming pregnant, IOM recommends you gain 25 to 35 pounds. Any BMI less than 18.5 is classified as underweight; IOM recommends individuals who were underweight prior to pregnancy gain between 28 and 40 pounds. An individual with a BMI of 25 or more should gain only 11 to 20 pounds, IOM suggests. Follow your physician’s recommendations on weight gain.
Weight Loss During Pregnancy
Some women do lose weight during pregnancy due to morning sickness -- nausea and vomiting that 70 to 80 percent of pregnant women experience typically from four to 16 weeks gestation. Morning sickness combined with decreased appetite can result in weight loss. Discuss options for managing morning sickness with your doctor.
Gaining Too Much
Gaining weight too quickly during pregnancy can lead to problems for both you and your baby. The best approach to high gestational weight gain is to focus on eating healthfully and staying active. Never go on a diet during pregnancy, even the Weight Watchers Program. If you feel that you are gaining too much weight with your pregnancy, consult your doctor so you can come up with an eating plan that works for you.
- Weight Watchers: Frequently Asked Questions
- Weight Watchers: Weight Gain During Pregnancy
- American Pregnancy Association: Pregnancy Weight Gain
- American Pregnancy Association: Hyperemesis Gravidarum
- Clinical Evidence: Nausea and Vomiting in Early Pregnancy
- MedlinePlus: Managing Your Weight Gain During Pregnancy