Video Text Alternative: NICHD Spotlight: Dr. Catherine Spong Explains Why Women Should Discuss Weight Gain During Pregnancy with their Health Care Provider

To view the original video and read the Spotlight, please go to

Video/ Graphics Audio
NICHD Spotlight
Explaining why pregnant women and women considering pregnancy should discuss weight gain with their doctors

NIH/Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development logo
GRAPHIC SLIDE: Catherine Spong, M.D.

Dr. Spong on camera.
Dr. Catherine Spong: Weight gain in pregnancy is a really important topic for women and their health care providers to discuss. It's a common thing for women to think that when they're pregnant they can "eat for two." In fact, only about 300 additional calories per day are needed, which is certainly not eating for two—not eating two separate sets of meals for each.

So working with your health care provider, working with a nutritionist as needed, and understanding that, yes, you need to eat a little bit more during pregnancy, but certainly not eating double the amount that you typically eat. It's really important for women to eat a well-balanced diet that covers all of the food groups, to continue to exercise, and to stay healthy so that they can optimize their pregnancy outcome.
Camera Cut.

Dr. Spong on camera.
Dr. Catherine Spong: One of the important things for women as they're contemplating pregnancy, as they're thinking about becoming pregnant, is to work with their health care provider on how to optimize their health prior to beginning pregnancy. And that includes not only attaining a weight that is good and healthy for them, but also to eat a well-balanced diet, to start their prenatal vitamins, take their folic acid prior to conception, if possible. And if they have any medical complications, to get those under good care prior to becoming pregnant.
top of pageBACK TO TOP