Home - Moms in Motion - Nutrition and Pregnancy Winnipeg, Manitoba

Class One

Healthy Weight Gain

 In future classes we will talk about the role of physical activity in our everyday lives and the role of healthy eating in our everyday lives as a way to control how much weight we gain in pregnancy.

Today, we are going to talk about how much weight each person here needs to gain by doing an activity together as well as how to achieve their healthy weight.


The role of weight gain for each of these area

  • Breasts: Increase in size to prepare for feeding your baby.
  • Blood & Extra Fluid: While pregnant, your body makes more blood to bring food and air to your baby
  • Amniotic Fluid: This is ht water that your baby floats in and grows
  • Uterus: Increases in sizes about 20 times to hold your growing baby
  • Average Baby: Some babies may be more or less. Over 9 lbs is too big
  • Placenta: This is a specific organ that is formed during pregnancy to help pass nutrients from you to your baby. Waste from the baby passes to you through the placenta
  • Muscle & Fat: You develop more muscle to help carry the extra weight and fat storage for after delivery


Breasts, Blood & Extra Fluid, Amniotic Fluid, Uterus, Average Baby, Placenta, Muscle & Fat
1.1 kg or 2.5 lbs, 2 kg or 7 lbs, 0.9 kg or 2 lbs, 1.1 kg or 2.5 lbs, 3.4 kg or 7.5 lbs, 0.7 kg or 1.5 lbs, 2.7 kg or 6 lbs

Question: Why is a healthy weight important?


Important For Mom

  • Ease discomforts of pregnancy (sore legs, back, feet)
  • Healthy weight allows you to continue everyday activities, especially taking care of other children you may have
  • Decrease risk of developing diabetes
  • Decrease risk of delivery complications (C-section, vacuum, suction that can cause severe bruising to baby)
  • Lower risk of high blood pressure (decrease risk of miscarriage, delivering early, stillbirth)
  • Decrease risk of becoming overweight in future pregnancy
  • Faster recovery after birth

Important For Baby

  • Decrease risk of complications (baby too big means delivery intervention and serious injury or death to baby)
  • Baby less likely to develop diseases such as heart disease, diabetes, high blood pressure etc… in childhood or adulthood

Question: Why is a healthy weight important?


By being active and watching what and how much you eat.

How much food is enough?

  • First trimester: need around extra 100 calories each day
    • This is like eating:
      • A large apple, or a slice of cheese, or
      • A glass of low-fat milk, or
      • A piece of baked bannock/bread.
  • Second and third trimester: need around 300 extra calories each day.
    • This is like eating:
      • A piece of whole wheat toast with peanut butter and a glass of juice, or
      • A small piece of dried meat or fish and a piece of bannock, or
      • A bowl of vegetable soup with crackers and a slice of cheese.
  • Breastfeeding: need approximately 400 extra calories each day.
    • This is like eating:
      • 2 slices of whole wheat toast with peanut butter and half a glass of juice, or
      • A large piece of dried meat or fish and 2 large carrots, or
      • A bowl of chicken noodle soup and a whole wheat bun.

NOTE: You still need to weigh yourself regularly (your nurse will do this at every visit). This is one reason why it is important to go for regular prenatal check-ups. The amount of weight you gain between visits helps tell you and your doctor if you are eating enough or too little and if you are doing enough activity or not. Not sure? Ask them!


Give examples of different fluids and ask participants the caloric intake of each beverage

Beverage,Serving Size,Calories
Soda (soft drinks),1 ½ cups or 12 ounces,124-189
Iced Tea,1 ½ cups,129-143
Orange Juice,1 ½ cups,157-168
Apple Juice,1 ½ cups,169-175
1% low-fat milk,1 ½ cups,154
Starbucks Cafe Latte (whole),1 ½ cups,200
Water,1 ½ cups,0


Question: Do Fluids count as part of your caloric/energy intake for the day?


YES. Remember that fluids count in your total calorie intake for the day


Question: Why aren’t soft drinks or slurpees good for your health?


Because they are high in sugar and calories and do not provide any nutritional benefit. If you are thirsty, have water or milk instead.


How much water do pregnant women need each day? Why is making sure you get enough water important?

  • Need: 8-12 cups/day, more if the weather is warm or if you are exercising.
  • Not enough water can cause constipation, preterm labor, and miscarriage.
  • Even slight dehydration can contribute to feeling tired.
  • After baby is born, drinking enough water is important to make enough breast milk.
  • High sugar beverages (i.e. pop, juices)/caffeinated beverages (i.e. pop, certain teas, coffee, hot chocolate) can lead to dehydration, and do not count in total fluid intake for the day.
  • Dehydration can be mistaken for hunger. When you feel hungry, try drinking a full glass of water and see if the hunger still remains 15 minutes later. If your hunger goes away, you know you should be drinking more water.

Tips to getting enough fluids

  • Fill a water bottle with the amount of water you hope to finish during the day. Aim to finish it.
  • Keep a written total of the glasses of water you are finishing during the day. Aim for between 8-12 glasses per day.
  • Try crystal lite or Nestea crystals to help you reach your fluid goals for the day without adding unneeded calories or sugar.

BMI = Mass(kg) / (Height (m))2

Height, Height in Centimeters, Meters Squared (for below calculation)
5’12 or 6’0,182.9,3.34