Should You Be Dieting In Pregnancy?

Introduction And Background
Humans are vain creatures and women especially are worried about their looks all the time around, aren’t they? And a pregnant woman…that is a sight to behold. Not only do they have to carry around the baby weight for nine months but have to go through the process of delivering a child too. Let’s not get into the details of that though! The main question is, should you be dieting while pregnant? Well, the answer to that is actually no. One should definitely not be dieting in pregnancy because it could cause a lot of problems and issues for the mother and the child which you will read in this article. However, one thing to point out is that even though you should not be dieting, it is better not to eat for two. Eat your normal regular meals because eating for two means you will be gaining more than the average pregnant woman and that is not something one would want! So why shouldn’t you be dieting in pregnancy? Here is why.

It’s Bad For The Baby
A pregnant woman is responsible for the growth and development of the unborn child and that unborn child requires quite a lot of nutrition. If a woman were to go on a diet during that time, a lot of things could go horribly wrong. The baby requires a lot of minerals and vitamins because the slightest of deficiencies can cause catastrophic events. For instance, it is a known fact that folic acid deficiency can easily cause neural tube defects in the baby. This is why the doctors often tell to take folic acid supplements in case it is not there in the diet. There are a lot of other nutrients as well like this which are required and you get through what you eat. Hence, if you are on a diet and are strictly eating specific items, chances are pretty high that you will probably be causing the baby more harm than good by being deficient in some nutrients.

It’s Bad For The Mother
As we all know and have heard a countless number of times, a pregnant woman’s hemoglobin levels are quite important and where does hemoglobin form from? It needs iron. Hence, if a woman is not taking her iron supplements either and is actually on a diet and not eating enough to get that iron from food items, the risks and dangers of delivery get higher. A woman’s entire body system is changing and more than that, she needs to have blood for two now, not just one. And whatever she is having, most of it will go into the formation of the baby and she needs her own energy as well.

What most women forget is what comes after they have had the baby; breastfeeding. It is very important and essential for the growth of the baby and not only that, a mother’s milk has immunity and nutrients that will not be found in any of the formula milk in the market and it is extremely healthy and doctors recommend that the child be breastfed till a certain age and only after that should formula milk be used. And in order for the mother to lactate and the child to be breastfed, milk has to be formed and a lot of energy reserves need to be stored. Were you aware of the fact that a lot of energy is required for lactation? It is actually the way to lose the baby weight as well after delivery. Breastfeeding mothers automatically start losing weight too because the entire process requires a lot of energy. That energy they require is stored in their body throughout the duration of their pregnancy. That is why they are told that it is okay for them to gain weight during pregnancy. They have a tiny human growing inside them anyway and they need the extra fat reserves for the energy that is to be utilized later on. This is one of the major reasons why you should NOT be dieting in pregnancy.

Although dieting in pregnancy is not really recommended, do not start eating for two. Eat normally and also indulge your cravings but get rid of the idea that maybe you should be eating double or triple servings for a healthier baby. It does not work like that and pregnancy in itself is a diabetogenic state. Hence, you should be careful!

There is no reason to diet during pregnancy, it can wait till after you have had the baby. On average, a pregnant woman gains about ten to twelve kilograms during her pregnancy. About three to four kilograms is the weight of the baby and the placenta and the rest is the energy reserve that she needs.

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