By Consumer Dummies

During your second trimester (weeks 14 through 27), you need to take in an extra 300 to 350 calories. The second trimester (weeks 14 through 27) is a time of incredible growth for your baby. She goes from weighing only about an ounce at the end of week 13 to weighing more than 2 pounds by the end of week 26.

To support your little one’s growth during this phase of pregnancy, you need to consume about 300 to 350 extra calories per day. If you’re at a normal weight, look to gain approximately 1 pound per week; if you’re overweight or obese, try to gain half a pound per week.

You don’t have to eat all 300 to 350 calories at one time. You can spread them out over the course of the day. Check out the following list for some great meal and snack ideas that’ll give you the calories you need during your second trimester (the number of calories is in parentheses). Feel free to mix and match to make your own yummy combinations.

  • 1 large banana (120) + 1 large apple (95) + 30 pistachios (100)
  • 1 ounce whole-grain crackers (120) + 1 piece of string cheese (85) + 1/2 cup frozen yogurt (140)
  • 1 cup 1% cottage cheese (160) + 1 cup fresh sliced strawberries (50) + 1/2 cup edamame (95)
  • 1 cup fat-free milk (90) + 1 cup whole-grain cereal (175) + 1/2 cup blueberries (45)
  • Two slices whole-wheat toast (160) + 1 tablespoon almond butter (100) + 1 tablespoon raspberry preserves (55)
  • 1 ounce tortilla chips (140) + 1/4 cup salsa (20) + 1/2 cup black beans (110) + 1 cup fresh pineapple chunks (80)
  • 6 ounces Concord grape juice (130) + 1/2 ounce dark chocolate (85) + 6 ounces nonfat fruited Greek yogurt (130)
  • 1 smoothie (310) made with 1/2 banana + 1/2 cup strawberries + 1/2 cup nonfat milk + 1 scoop protein powder + 1 tablespoon wheat germ
  • 1 frozen meal of your choice (about 300)

Some days you’ll be hungrier than others. Follow your hunger cues and eat more on the days when you’re hungrier, but don’t force yourself to eat on the days when you aren’t. For most women, it all evens out. Besides, your doctor will let you know whether you’re gaining too little or too much weight, so you can adjust your calories up or down as appropriate.

If you’re so inclined, you can rely on the scale to tell you whether you’re getting enough to eat (or too much, for that matter). Look at your average weight gain over the course of a few weeks to assess your progress.