In general, the recommended weight gain during pregnancy is based on your body mass index (BMI) before you were pregnant. BMI is a ratio of your body weight to your height. It isn’t a perfect measure—for example, if you’re particularly muscular, your BMI may indicate “overweight” or “obese” even if your body fat percentage is on the lower side—but it can help the average person measure their weight.
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Pregnancy Weight Gain Chart
See our pregnancy weight gain chart below to understand what a typical range of weight gain should look like for you.
Underweight BMI < 18.5
28 to 40 lbs (about 12.5 to 18 kg)
Normal weight BMI 18.5 to 24.9
25 to 35 lbs (about 11.5 to 16 kg)
OverweightBMI 25 to 29.9
15 to 25 lbs(about 7 to 11.5 kg)
Obese BMI 30 +
11 to 20 lbs (about 5 to 9 kg)
Note: This chart reflects weight gain for a single baby pregnancy.
What causes weight gain during pregnancy?
In addition to the baby, weight gain during pregnancy is comprised of a number of factors:
1. Placenta
1–2 lbs (0.5–1 kg)
2. Amniotic fluid
2 lbs (1 kg)
3. Breast tissue
1–2 lbs(0.5–1 kg)
4. Blood supply
3–4 lbs(1–2 kg)
5. Stored fat for breastfeeding and delivery
3–4 lbs(1–2 kg)
6. Larger uterus
3 lbs (1.5 kg)
7. Baby
7–8 lbs(3.5–4 kg)
8. Extra body fluids
4 lbs (2 kg)

What does weight gain during pregnancy indicate?

Along with the aforementioned factors that contribute to your weight gain during pregnancy, gaining weight can help ensure a healthy baby upon delivery.

If you gain less than the recommended amount of weight, it’s possible you will deliver a baby who is too small. Low birth weight babies may have trouble breast feeding, can be at increased risk of illness and may experience developmental delays.

If you gain more than the recommended amount of weight, it’s possible to deliver a baby who is too large, leading to delivery complications, C-section, pregnancy related high blood pressure and potentially obesity during childhood.

How to maintain a healthy weight during pregnancy

When you become pregnant, be sure to talk to your doctor about pregnancy health and nutrition. You may find that our recipes for pregnant women can give you some good ideas for delicious foods to eat that can nourish both you and your growing baby, and our guide for exercising during pregnancy can help you learn ways to stay active and exercise safely during pregnancy.

Be sure to track your pregnancy weight gain throughout your pregnancy and follow our pregnancy weight gain chart to stay on top of everything.