Keeping weight gain in pregnancy in check

Controlling weight gain in pregnancy is a challenge.  Weight gain is normal but too much carries more risk for a large baby, for gestational diabetes and maybe even long term risk for obesity in the offspring.  In a previous blog we have looked at what amount of weight gain is normal but for many the pounds just seem to pour on regardless of what they do.  Keeping track of your weight is useful to guide things and you may find the chart we made from the Institute of Medicine recommendations useful. What can be done to keep the weight gain in check.  A recent study came up with a simple approach which seemed to work and may help.
In its essence the approach was having continuity of care and a weight measured at each visit, pretty standard care. The extras were having a food technologist spend five minutes review what the woman ate the previous day and if needs be the support of a psychologist (more details given on the GDM research post for 21st Oct 2011) .  With this intervention less fast food and fizzy drinks were consumed, there was more uses of home cooking, more fruits and veggies were eaten and water became the beverage more likely used.  All this then resulted in a lot less weight gain, nearly 7 Kgs or 15 pounds less over the course of the pregnancy, and the risk of gestational diabetes dropped from 29% to 6%!
While there will be no simple answer to extra weight gain in pregnancy that works for everyone, it seems to me that plotting your weight on a chart every couple of weeks gives one a sense of which direction things are going.  Once a week ask yourself the following: in the last two days did I have a fizzy pop drink or fast food choices (a yes being the less desirable answer) and over the last three days did I have some home cooking, any fruits and vegetables, drink water for thirst (yes answers being desirable). Knowing what is happening will help give some control over the situation.