If you’re pregnant with twins, your body will have extra nutritional needs, but that doesn’t mean you have to double your portions or gain too much weight. In fact, you only need to add 600 extra calories per day, and it’s important to make those calories count by providing your body as well as your babies the right nutritional values. More importantly, listen to your body: eat when you are hungry, and stop when you feel full.
How much weight should you gain?
Weight gain during pregnancy depends on several factors like your body type, your pre-pregnancy weight, and your height, but most women carrying twins are encouraged to gain 16 to 20 kg throughout the entire pregnancy. Normally, you will gain 2-3 kg during the first trimester, and then around 0.5 kg per week during the second and third trimesters. But don’t panic, you will lose around 13kg in the first 2 weeks after giving birth, as much of that weight will be the babies as well as the excess fluids that you develop during your term.
A balanced diet for a healthy pregnancy
Try to follow a healthy balanced diet that includes a variety from the 4 main food groups to ensure your babies get the proper nutrients, and you don’t put on too much extra unnecessary weight. Dietitian Christelle Bedrossian can help you plan your pregnancy diet and control your weight during as well as after you give birth.
Get the energy you need. Complex carbs found in whole grains, fruits, and vegetables will help your body get the energy it needs to keep you going. They are also filled with fiber, which helps prevent constipation that many pregnant women have.
Build blood. Your blood volumes will increase during pregnancy in order to provide your babies with blood. So filling up on protein foods that include iron which your body absorbs easily will increase blood production. Get your proteins from fish, poultry, lean meats, soy products, beans, and nuts.
Build bones. Make sure you include enough calcium-rich foods in your diet in order to have better muscle function and strong bones and teeth. Calcium can be found in dairy products and leafy green vegetables.
Healthy fats. You and your babies will need some fat to stay healthy, so make sure you go for the unsaturated fats found in nuts and vegetable oils.
Here are some healthy snack ideas that will help you add those 600 calories to your daily regimen:
•25 almonds, low salt or salt-free (220 calories) with 2/3 cup dried cranberries (280 calories)
•1/2 cup mixed nuts, low salt or salt-free (410 calories) and 1 large orange (90 calories)
For a smaller snack of around 300-350 calories, try:
•1.5 cups oatmeal (220 calories) with 7 large strawberries (40 calories) and 1/2 cup blueberries (40 calories)
•2 cups low-fat yogurt (280 calories) and 1 large peach (60 calories)
Dietitian Christelle Bedrossian