Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Weighty Matters

First off, thank you for your support yesterday. I felt kind of bad blogging about weight gain. I mean, really? Weight gain? Have I come that far that I am going to go on about something so completely irrelevant?

I guess the answer is yes (but I still feel whiny about it). Part of the problem is (was) that I hadn't been gaining a lot of weight up to this point. If it had been the steady, one-pound per week gain that is quoted in all of my pregnancy books, then perhaps it wouldn't have knocked the wind out of my sails. Each time I have been in, I have not looked forward to my meeting with The Scale, but each time, the nurse has smiled as she wrote down the number and assured me that I am doing great with the gain. In fact, last time, they even encouraged me to add some more fat into my diet, since I had gained so little.

Yesterday, after weighing me, there was no smile. Instead, she wrote the number down and asked if my eating habits had changed dramatically in the past month. Then, she told me that while overall, my weight gain is good, this past month's eight pound jump is not okay.

The thing is that I don't feel as if I have been eating that much differently than at any other time during my pregnancy (first trimester excluded when I couldn't eat at all). My appetite has increased lately, but I am eating really healthy stuff. My current craving is fruit, namely mangoes and watermelon. I have had to throw an extra snack in during the afternoon, but I usually do a yogurt or granola bar.

So, I am obviously not wanting to repeat another such increase at next month's weigh in. And not purely for superficial reasons, either. I don't want an unhealthy weight gain to negatively affect the baby's health. But in reviewing my habits of the past month, I really don't know what to change. I tried taking out the afternoon snack yesterday, and then I was so hungry, I ate more than usual at dinnertime.

My husband and I have been more active lately, with the weather getting nicer. We are getting out with the dogs, walking, taking them to dog park, etc. I walk a fair amount for work and now that the fainting seem to be a thing of the past, I choose the stairs instead of the elevator. Still, I could probably put more activity into my schedule.

Has anyone else faced this issue? How have you handled increased appetite and weight gain? Have you had a jump one month only to return to "normal" gain the next?

21 comments:

Jen said...

So far I've had a couple spurts of weight gain that worried me. But after each, the gain leveled off for a month or so.

One thing I do is weigh myself first thing every Monday morning before my shower. Personally, I think that's the best way to track weight gain most consistently. At the OB's office, my weight is more likely to fluctuate by a few pounds depending on the time of day my appointment is.

alison said...

I have no experience with this - but I do read a lot of blogs. And it seems as though there is no "set" amount of weight to gain, or rate at which to gain it. I have a feeling that if you got a second opinion on your weight gain (not that I'm recommending this, I'm just saying...) a different doctor or nurse might say your weight gain is completely healthy. The bottom line is, do you feel healthy? It sounds like you do - you're eating great, getting some low-impact exercise in, making sure you're eating when you should. I honestly in my heart of hearts don't think you should worry yourself sick over this sudden jump in weight. It's all part of the process, and the "normal weight curve" is just an average of how people gain weight - it's a place to deviate from. Hang in there girl. :)

Kristen said...

I think your weight gain sounds great. It had to start sometime, right? As you end the second trimester and begin the third, you will put on the majority of your weight. I believe that is normal, since the baby is also putting on fat and muscle at a tremendous pace.

Everyone gains weight differently. I have been a "steady gainer" but even gained a lb. a week in my first trimester when some women don't gain anything or even lose weight. As long as you are eating healthy and aren't depending on Ben or Jerry for your dietary needs, you are just fine. Don't let the nurse make you feel bad at all. I never get a smile from them but yet my OB tells me all is well :)

If you're on track for 30-35 lbs. then you are doing much better than the average pregnant woman (*cough* me *cough*). You are doing everything right and your LO is going to benefit from it.

infertility just sucks said...

Dude, I LOST a pound last month.

They said it would probably catch up to me the next month...But I have to admit I'm not really worried about it; I eat all the time.

Polka Dot said...

I agree with the others. I'm not an expert, but it would seem to me that you would go through weight gain spurts just like any growing ... woman. hah I wanted to say kid. Anyway - it was probably shocking to the nurse because you had spent so much time barely gaining weight that is seemed out of place.

ryc: I'm hoping that's the case - my next job has awesome benefits that will help us get to babyland sooner than we would otherwise. I mean, something good has to come out of all of this right?

Jen said...

I vote eat when you are hungry and don't eat when you are not. Your body will figure it out. Maybe the extra gain was just making up for being a bit slower before.

JuliaS said...

Second trimester was when my weight gain seemed to take off and I usually gained double what I was "supposed to" each month. As long as your bp is decent and you aren't bloating/retaining a ton of water with vision disturbances and headaches - most likely not something to really worry about.

Sometimes I think my "spurts" corresponded with growth spurts for the baby too.

sara said...

I'm not far along yet to have too much wisdom, but my sister did just that with each of her pregnancies. Between weeks 16-20 she gained like 2 lbs, 20-24 like 10 lbs and then 24-28 another 3...or so. She thought it was weird also. But the doctor told her not to worry. So I wouldn't too much, okay? I know it's hard...but hang in there. You sound like you're eating well, and you are doing the best for the baby. THAT is the important thing more than any crazy nurse or what the scale says. Hugs!

Kim said...

I really don't think that there's anything you can do differently! Maybe cut slightly back on carbs and eat more fresh veggies. But could you just be swollen or retaining water? Diet soda can do that to you also, in case you're drinking that. Otherwise, you seem to be eating very healthily and getting plenty of activity in - so what can ya do?

Not that this is relevant at all, but B is huge. I mean, she's 3 1/2 and taller (and consequently heavier) than most 5 year olds. She's always been huge. Not fat, she just looks much OLDER. And the child eats BIZARRELY healthy. Early on, I decided that if she was going to be bigger - she was going to be healthy, because I didn't want to be responsible (like if she was huge and lived on chicken nuggets). So she practically lives off the earth now. All fresh foods and whole grains. Nothing processed. At all. And she's still huge. So really, what else could I do? There's not a single change that I could make in her diet or lifestyle.

Now me, I'm not gaining. And I'm eating crap. Lots of crap. And normally, I gain weight just looking at food (in my non-pregnant state). So go figure. I think it's all a crap shoot.

Kim said...

I should have added that in the last WEEK with B, I gained *10* pounds. Now, obviously I couldn't possibly eat enough calories to gain 10 *real* pounds. So sometimes it just doesn't make sense. If it will make your doctor happy or give you some kind of relief, keep track of your calories for a week and see how that correlates to your weight gain. If it doesn't add up, then it must just be one of life's great mysteries.

Hope2morrow said...

I found your site from another one, so congratulations on your pregnancy! There are lots of us that would love to be in your shoes, but we're glad we can share in your celebration because it gives us hope!

Tracy said...

I think it's very normal to have a spurt in any given month...I wouldn't worry about it. I mean, you are eating healthy and are active, so what else can you do? If you are hungry, you need to eat, and you are making good choices, so...

Some women just gain more during pregnancy.

Of course, I've gained 30 pounds to date, so perhaps I'm not the best one to be doling out advice.

Nicky said...

Sounds like you're gaining weight much like I am! I'd barely gained anything, often showed a loss at appointments, and had been ordered by my doctor at one point to start eating cheese and milkshakes. Then I suddenly gained 6 pounds over 4 weeks in mid-late 2nd trimester (corresponding with the first time all pregnancy when I had been absolutely starving all the time).

My doctor said several things that might help: (1) although a huge jump isn't normally what they would want, it's totally fine (and good!) if your earlier gains had been small; (2) some of it is likely water retention from warmer weather; (3) your total thus far is more important than any particular 4-week period; and (4) your baby probably had a growth spurt during that month.

Don't let one nurse's frown get to you. She probably hadn't looked at your full chart, and thought you were gaining that much every month. You're doing great!

K @ ourboxofrain said...

Not to repeat what everyone else wrote, but try not to stress about it. Every woman is different and gains at a different rate and at different points. You may have just been retaining water, or the baby may have just had a growth spurt. The keys are to eat reasonable portions of nutritious food and get some exercise, and it sounds like you (unlike, say, me) are doing a great job of that. Keep up the good work and ignore the nurse!

Joy said...

I gained 50 lbs with my first daughter. Yeah, totally ridiculous. Just keep eating healthy and normal. Sometimes you gain a lot, sometimes you gain little. You won't hurt your little man if you gain a few extra pounds. If anything you'll hurt yourself!

Adriane said...

I'm sorry about the 8 lb gain this past month. I'm sure it's just a blip and you'll get back to normal. My gain has been ridiculous. I would be happy with 8 lbs - guess it's all relative. :-) Hang in there!! Everyone is different and it sounds like you're right on track.

Road Blocks and Roller Coasters said...

That's what happened to me when I went to my OB. Turns out though that when I weighed myself in the morning (before eating and drinking all day), my 8 pound gain was only 4 pounds, which was still a lot for me.

My thinking is that if you are eating healthy foods and a balanced diet I think you will be fine. EVERYONE I've talked to said that they had months where they gained a large amount and then would gain a normal amount or less the next month. Try not to stress out--though trust me when I say, I know how you feel. If you are healthy and active and not eating crap then I think you are fine.

HUGS!

Waiting Amy said...

If your DOCTOR didn't make a fuss, I wouldn't worry at all. I totally had this happen in my first pg. It can be very normal. Hang in there and don't let things worry you. It will all level out.

Mommy Someday said...

Yep -- I've been there. You would have to check my blog to be sure when -- I think it was around 22 weeks. I was horrified to learn I had gained 9 pounds at that appointment...got a big talk about eating better...etc. The next month (26 weeks) I was up 4 pounds, and this last appointment I had actually lost 2 pounds. I have done NOTHING differently in regards to my diet over the last 3 months... I really don't think we have that much control over how much we gain or don't gain -- I think our bodies will do what they need to do. Good luck!

Searching said...

You are doing what you can to be fit and healthy, scale be darned! It's just a number and if you are in a decent range, don't sweat it. :)

Annalien said...

I gained more than 40 pounds in both my pregnancies and the "too much" weight gain did not affect the babies' health at all. (By the way, my OB does not do regular weight checks during pregnancy.)Continue to eat healthy and be as active as you can, but my opinion is to not worry too much about your weight.