When Do You Start Gaining Weight In Pregnancy Across the 3 Trimesters

Pregnancy is considered to be a wonderful journey that brings in a lot of changes to one’s body. When do you start gaining weight in pregnancy? How doe it happen? and is it a good or a bad thing? the answers to all these questions will be discussed in this article.

1. Understanding Weight Gain During Pregnancy

When do you start gaining weight in pregnancy
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The pregnancy journey is considered to be the most beautiful phase of one’s life. It comes with a bunch of changes in the body of pregnant women. Some of the most common changes include weight gain, enlarged uterus, hormonal changes, stretch marks, and so on.

When do you start gaining weight in pregnancy? Weight gain is said to be the one which is most common among them. There are certain factors as well that affects this excessive weight gain during pregnancy. It is very important to have sound knowledge of weight gain in pregnancy.

Pregnancy weight gain is considered to be a natural and healthy process during the pregnancy journey. But When do you start gaining weight in pregnancy and can there be chances of excessive weight gain which can cause complications as well. It is believed that weight gain indicates that the baby is growing along with the mother.

When do you start gaining weight in pregnancy and is it a thing to be scared of? Weight gain during pregnancy provides necessary energy and nutrients that aid the growth and development of the baby and the formation of maternal tissues1.

2. How Much?

How Much Weight Should You Gain in Pregnancy? | Kaiser Permanente

When do you start gaining weight in pregnancy and how much is preferred? The amount of weight gain during pregnancy that is preferred for a woman depends upon the body type of each individual. It usually depends on the body mass index of a person.

Some IOM guidelines to be followed while monitoring weight gain during pregnancy are as follows:

1. For overweight women, the IOM recommendations call for a total weight gain of 6.8 to 11.3 kg.

2. All obese women should gain 5-9.1 kg, according to the IOM2.

3. Factors Causing Weight Gain?

When do you start gaining weight in pregnancy
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Certain factors can accelerate weight gain during pregnancy. Some of them are discussed below:

1. Increase In Blood Volume:

In order to support and help in the growth of the baby, the pregnant woman’s body produces an extra or high volume of blood. This can be one of the reasons to increase the body count as well.

2. Baby’s Growth:

The growth of the baby is the major reason for the increase in the body weight of the mother. A growing baby can contribute a lot to the body weight of the mother.

3. Maternal Tissue:

The maternal tissues like the breasts and uterus can also be a reason for the increasing body weight of the mother.

4. Fluid Retention:

In rare cases, fluid retention can a factor that causes weight gain during pregnancy. The body also produces fat that will help the person give energy for labor and breastfeeding3.

5. Placenta:

Placenta 4as you know is developed during pregnancy. This helps in providing nutrients that help the baby to develop. This can be another factor that can cause weight gain during pregnancy.

One important thing to understand is that fat is not the sole reason for weight gain during pregnancy. But When do you start gaining weight in pregnancy? 

4. When Do you Start Gaining Weight In Pregnancy

When do you start gaining weight in pregnancy? Weight gain during pregnancy can start from the start of the pregnancy journey. The entire pregnancy journey is divided into 3 trimesters. The weight gain during pregnancy also differs according to these trimesters.

When do you start gaining weight in pregnancy
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4.1 First Trimester: Minimal Weight Gain

When do you start gaining weight in pregnancy? That is the very first thing to understand. Weight gain usually strats from the first trimester. The first trimester is the first 3 months of the pregnancy journey. In this stage, Pregnancy weight gain is not something to be concerned about

. Here, the amount of weight gain during pregnancy will be less and it is because the baby is at the initial stage of growth and development. In this stage, the baby will require a good amount of nutrients and energy for growth. In this stage, women will feel fatigued and will be having vomiting tendencies. This can also be a reason for the slight variations in the weight.

Even though we are not paying much attention to weight gain during pregnancy in this trimester, it is important for pregnant women to eat healthy food. They need to ensure that the food they take in has got all the necessary vitamins and nutrients that can boost the health of both baby as well as the mother.

If you are noticing any sort of weight loss during this period, serious attention should be given. It is mandatory to discuss the changes in weight, especially weight loss during pregnancy with the doctor whom you are consulting.

It is also to be noted that pregnancy weight gain during this trimester will be low as compared to that of the next two trimesters. The rate of change will gradually increase with the passage of time. A healthy rate is always welcomed but if the healthy weight increases to an uncontrollable level or a level that is not preferred, it needs to be checked with no delay.

4.2 Second Trimester: Steady Weight Gain

2nd trimester update! | weight gain, bump progress + weird symptoms

This is the second stage or phase of the pregnancy journey. This trimester is for the next 3 months which is 13-27 weeks. In this stage, a pregnant lady will notice a steady increase in the rate of healthy weight gain. This happens due to the continuous or steady rate of growth and development of the baby.

In this particular stage, the baby requires a comparatively higher level of nutrients for rapid growth. It is the mother’s duty to make sure that the food she intake has all the required nutrients in it.

In this stage, the amount of weight gain during pregnancy can vary depending on the body type and health of the individual. Along with the growth of the baby, several other factors contribute to the increasing healthy weight gain during pregnancy. During pregnancy, women start to crave for certain food items that might be high in calories. This can be a reason for the weight gain.

It is very important to stay active during this trimester. Staying active can help them in having control over their weight during pregnancy. It can also help in boosting the energy level and reduce stress.

4.3 Third Trimester: Rapid Weight Gain

This stage starts from the 28th week and ends with the delivery. In this particular stage, women will notice a rapid increase in their weight. One of the factors for this rapid growth is the baby’s growth. In this stage, the baby has almost fully grown and is ready to come out. Since the weight of the baby will also be higher as compared to the other two trimesters5, the overall weight of the mother in this stage can go up as well.

Just like the other two trimesters, the amount of weight gain can be different for different individuals. It purely depends upon the body type, health, and other unique characteristics of an individual. Other factors like fluid retention also would be high in this trimester. This can also be a factor in the increase in weight. The increased size of the uterus can put a lot of pressure on the digestive system. This will eventually cause bloating and constipation.

Staying active is as important as the second semester. Staying active and doing workouts can help in having a safe and smooth delivery. It also helps in keeping the body fit and helps during the postpartum 6period.

5. Healthy Weight Gain

When do you start gaining weight in pregnancy
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When do you start gaining weight in pregnancy and is it going in a healthy way? Even though weight gain is a normal thing during pregnancy, it is important to monitor if the weight gain is healthy or not. An individual’s weight gain goals might vary with their pre-pregnancy weight or body mass and other features. Women who are likely to be pregnant with more than 1 baby will potentially have more weight than the ones who are carrying one baby.

Pregnant people should regularly communicate with their health care provider regarding their health and fluctuations in weight. A sudden rise in weight can make things complicated. It can increase the risk during delivery. It can also result in other health disorders like high blood pressure, diabetes, etc.

In order to avoid the chances of these medical risks, pregnant people should ensure they follow a healthy diet. Consume iron rich food that can provide the necessary nutrition for the baby as well as the mother.

6. Monitoring Weight Gain

When do you start gaining weight in pregnancy
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It is very important to monitor the fluctuations in weight during pregnancy. You should make sure that the health care provider team you are consulting keeps track of your weight fluctuations. This should be done to ensure that if any sudden changes happen, quick treatment can be provided.

Women should monitor their weight even at home regularly. This is done to see the changes that happen frequently. They can monitor or measure the weight 2-3 times on the same day to ensure accuracy.

Fluid retention can be a reason for the rapid increase in weight in the third and second trimesters. Your doctor might give you the advice to avoid certain food items and also to follow certain diet plans. They may also suggest taking medical tests like glucose tolerance, diabetes, etc.

Pregnant women should let the doctor know detailed information about their pre-existing medical conditions. This is done to avoid any health issues happening in between.

Women who suffer from obesity, hypertension, etc. also require close monitoring throughout pregnancy.

7. Conclusion

When do you start gaining weight in pregnancy
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When do you start gaining weight in pregnancy? Well, weight gain during pregnancy depends upon the body type and health of each individual. Weight gain is a healthy part of the pregnancy journey. Women usually start to gain the weight right from the first trimester. The weight gain process will continue till the delivery.

It is very important to monitor the fluctuations in weight. It should be monitored to ensure that the rate of weight gain during pregnancy is going in a healthy manner and does not affect the health of the baby and mother. The amount of weight gain can vary from person to person. The pregnant woman should share every health-related detail with her doctor without fail.

One after getting pregnant has to ensure that they are consuming a healthy diet with all the necessary nutrients and vitamins in it. This will help in the healthy development and growth of the baby and also helps in maintaining the health of the mother.

When do you start gaining weight in Pregnancy?

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  2. Martínez-Hortelano, Jose Alberto, et al. “Monitoring gestational weight gain and prepregnancy BMI using the 2009 IOM guidelines in the global population: a systematic review and meta-analysis.” BMC pregnancy and childbirth 20 (2020): 1-12. ↩︎
  3. Pérez-Escamilla, Rafael, et al. “Breastfeeding: crucially important, but increasingly challenged in a market-driven world.” The Lancet 401.10375 (2023): 472-485. ↩︎
  4. Rosenfeld, Cheryl S. “The placenta‐brain‐axis.” Journal of neuroscience research 99.1 (2021): 271-283. ↩︎
  5. Chaemsaithong, Piya, Daljit Singh Sahota, and Liona C. Poon. “First trimester preeclampsia screening and prediction.” American journal of obstetrics and gynecology 226.2 (2022): S1071-S1097. ↩︎
  6. Wang, Ziyi, et al. “Mapping global prevalence of depression among postpartum women.” Translational psychiatry 11.1 (2021): 543. ↩︎

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