Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Help Fatten Me Up! (Pregnancy Update #3)

(That's me, today, in all my glory... I see a bump! Do you???)

Today was another regular check-up with the OB for me. Nothing unusual; just normal stuff. I did have some bloodwork done to check for any possible sign of any antigens or infection that could be lurking; this is because of my history with preterm labor. We have no reason to suspect a problem, but it's better to be safe than sorry!

You would think that hearing your baby's heartbeat would become less amazing each visit, but it's not. It's such a welcome sound, each and every time. This little boy or girl sounded great, with a rate in the 140's. As is typical with my babies, the doctor had to chase this one around to catch the heartbeat.

I have been utterly delighted to feel fetal movement already this time! It's been earlier in each subsequent pregnancy for me (I was past 20 weeks with my first!) and it's such a joy. Just a little "tap-tap-tap" at this point, but a beautiful reassuring feeling.

My blood pressure was on the higher side-- 125 over 78. Not anything to get all worked up about, but higher than usual for me. It's been that way this whole pregnancy, but I have no idea why. My doctor says I should try to avoid unnecessary stress, seek quiet time, and avoid going overboard on the sodium (though I'm not on any true "salt restriction").

So everything looks great, right? Well, I think so! But, at approaching 16 weeks along, I've gained (drumroll, please...).... nothing. Nada. Zilch. I have not managed to put on even half a pound. I told you all I was worried about this- I've worked hard to gain weight. I even made them re-weigh me because I was SURE I had gained at least a little. Nope. And they weigh me on the same scale every time. And I ate a big breakfast. Man. Again, this doesn't sound like a problem. Far more women are told they're gaining too fast than that they're not gaining enough. But I'm in that second group. And so I was grilled about what I eat in a typical day-- each and every meal. Apparently, I should have put on at least five pounds by now.

So here's the verdict...

I have to eat at least 2500 calories a day (!). And if I want to keep walking on the treadmill? (And I do!) Then that number jumps to 3000. My word, that's a lot of calories! I have no fat, cholesterol, or sugar restrictions (I'm all good on those fronts), but I do want to be a little careful with my sodium intake. And, obviously, I want the majority of those calories to come from nutrient-rich foods (though I'm not opposed to treats!). My doctor wants to see me gain at least a pound a week, preferably a little more so I can "catch up". I don't start out itty-bity or anything, but I'm still supposed to gain 25-35 pounds...

Any suggestions? Can you help me come up with a sample meal plan that gets me to 3000 calories? I'm having a tough time... and, trust me, I eat!

What would YOU eat if someone told you to pack 3000 calories into your day? Let me know, please!


Kristie said...

I had the exact same problem with my 1st and 3rd baby. I ate like a pig, and got asked by my midwife if I was "trying" not to gain weight.

Honestly, this sounds terrible, but the only months I gained enough weight with #3 were the ones that I made it a point to eat ice cream before bed every single day...

Heather Benza said...

I will be 16 weeks Friday and have gained 3 pounds, BUT I popped out so round it looks like I'm 6 months along!!
I just discovered ONE Cheesecake Brownie Ben and Jerry's which is surely the MOST magnificent ice cream I've ever tasted (this may be a pregnancy response)
If you are really good about sticking to your healthy eating I can't imagine being hungry enough to stuff down 3000 calories. (But some cookies and Big Macs....)
Maybe a smoothie for breakfast with whole fat yogurt and 2% milk instead of fat free and skim could give you a boost without really making you feel any more full.

Kris said...

I gained 5 lb by 30 weeks, which is when I delivered, and was told repeatedly that my gain had nothing to do with the delivery (I have a uterine anomaly).

I'm surprised your doctor is getting on your case. Some people just gain later in the pregnancy than others. I'd have to check, but I didn't start gaining until at least 20 weeks.

JessieLeigh said...

Kristie- A little ice cream before bed doesn't sound like a real hardship... :)

Heather- The smoothie is a good idea- I'm supposed to consume more full-fat dairy (though she said I don't have to change my milk if I don't want...)

Kris- That's a good point that women gain differently. I think what's significant here is that they could never find a cause for my preterm labor, despite a lot of investigation. Because "inadequate weight gain" CAN be tied to preterm births, my doctor doesn't want me taking any chances...

Ladybug's Mom said...

I not only didn't gain weight I lost weight for the first 20 weeks with no morning sickness. When I delivered at 30 weeks I weighed 5 pounds more than I did at the beginning of the pregnancy prior delivery and 20 pounds less after delivery.

I ate as nutriously as I could. I couldn't do ice cream because I was so scared of gestational diabetes with my medical history.

So I joined babyfit.com, which helps you track your food intake. Little by little I learned what "good" foods would help me reach my total.

Let me know if you have any questions, I'd love to help.

Mama said...

I would suggest almonds, and trail mixes. Those things always suprise me with how high caloric values they have, because after 4 or 5 handfuls, I could have eaten a whole dinner for the same calories. But nutrient rich as well. HTH!