Calorie Blooper

This has always stuck with me as tragically funny, but I've never blogged about it before. Upon discovering that I was newly pregnant, I went to my initial OB visit, which was just with the nurse to confirm the pregnancy, take medical history {even though I've delivered 3 babies with them before}, review necessary testing, appropriate medications during pregnancy, etc. Still having concern for a healthy weight, I inquired about nutrition during pregnancy. This particular nurse was no spring chicken, so maybe she just subscribes to ancient thought when it comes to pregnancy & eating.

Me: So, I'm wondering what my calorie intake should be while I'm pregnant. I have been doing Weight Watchers so would like to continue to eat healthy.

Nurse: Pregnant women need 2500 calories per day.

Me:, it doesn't depend on my starting weight or other factors?

Nurse: No, you just need to eat 2500 calories per day.

Me: {slight look of disbelief}

Nurse: Ya know, just keep eating healthy. Like if you go to McDonald's {I almost burst out laughing at this next part}, just order a Quarter Pounder & drink. Skip the fries.

Me: {trying as hard as possible to keep a straight face} Ok. Thanks.

I'm no MD or even RN for that matter, but wouldn't common sense tell us that a woman's starting weight has everything to do with how many calories she would need while pregnant? So if I weighed 300 pounds to start or 115 pounds, I would still need 2500 calories? And that McDonald's comment?! I guess she doesn't realize that a Quarter Pounder & drink would qualify for the healthy eating plan! Obviously this nurse needs a little refresher course on pregnancy nutrition!

I've since discovered that preggos need an additional 300 calories a day during the second and third trimester {no increase during the first trimester}, which makes much more sense to me. This really doesn't amount to that much more food, about an apple, a yogurt, and a couple slices of bread. Several websites did indicate that this comes out to about 1,900 - 2,500 calories per day for the "average" woman, but I don't think we should prescribe that upper amount as a one-size-fits-all solution.


Andrea said...

Maybe she just wasn't listening to you. =) Another common problem with health professionals. Way to do the research yourself! Glad to hear that little tidbit that you don't have to eat THAT much more when you're pregnant! Not that I'm pregnant but it's one of my worries because as I do lose weight the idea of gaining more scares me.

I hope everything is going well!

Peaceful Chaoz said...

That is pretty funny!! You rock girl that you are doing so well!!! I'm so proud of you! :0)

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