What is it?

It is normal to gain weight during pregnancy. However, being overweight or obese before pregnancy, or putting on too much wait during pregnancy, can increase the risk of problems like:

  • Miscarriage and stillbirth
  • High blood pressure and pre-eclampsia (a serious condition which can cause organ damage)
  • Blood clots
  • Gestational diabetes
  • Having a large baby


What will my GP do now?

If you are overweight or obese and thinking about having a baby, your GP may talk to you about weight loss before getting pregnant. They may also:

  • Help you set up a weight management plan
  • Provide strategies to increase your activity and eat a range of wholesome foods
  • Refer you to a dietician to discuss healthy eating and lifestyle
  • Request pre‑pregnancy counselling with a private obstetrician

If you are pregnant, your GP will work with you to monitor your weight gain during pregnancy. They may also:

  • Check your blood sugar levels or refer you for an oral glucose tolerance test as you may be at greater risk of developing gestational diabetes
  • Refer you to a dietitian to discuss healthy eating and lifestyle
  • Provide you with a guide that explains what kind of weight gain to expect during your pregnancy

Your GP may want to see you more often than a usual pregnancy to monitor your weight and the health of your baby.


What can I do?

Avoid ‘eating for two’ in the first trimester, as you don’t need the extra energy at this stage. Aim to eat more nutritious food, such as:

  • Fresh fruit and vegetables
  • Wholegrains
  • Lean meats or eggs

Try to avoid drinking soft drinks and other high sugar drinks. Watch your serving sizes. For example, a serving of lean meat is the size of your palm and a serve of pasta is half a cup of cooked pasta. Do some regular exercise as directed by your GP.