Protein and Pregnancy

June 1, 2021
The Family Childbirth and Children's Center at Mercy - Baltimore, MD

The nutritional requirements for pregnancy are different from non-pregnant women.

A woman pregnant with one baby should increase her caloric intake by 300 calories per day. If she is expecting twins, increase by 600 calories per day, and for triplets, increase by 900 calories per day.

According to Mercy’s Rachel D. Adams, M.D., a Board Certified OB-GYN with Metropolitan OB-GYN in downtown Baltimore, pregnant women should also increase protein consumption to 70 to 100 grams a day, depending on body weight.

"Appropriate protein intake decreases complications such as pre-eclampsia, gestational diabetes and even preterm birth," Dr. Adams said.

The use of protein powders or high-protein beverages is not encouraged because they do not lead to improved pregnancy outcomes, Dr. Adams said. Instead, a pregnant woman should try to obtain all nutrients needed through different foods in her diet.

To view Mercy ob/gyn Dr. Rachel Adams’ interview regarding protein, diet and pregnancy, click here.

Dan Collins - Senior Director of Media Relations at Mercy Medical Center

Dan Collins, Senior Director of Media Relations

Email: Office: 410-332-9714 Cell: 410-375-7342

About Mercy

Founded in 1874 in downtown Baltimore by the Sisters of Mercy, Mercy Medical Center is a 183-licensed bed acute care university-affiliated teaching hospital. Mercy has been recognized as a top Maryland hospital by U.S. News & World Report; a Top 100 hospital for Women’s Health & Orthopedics by Healthgrades; is currently A-rated for Hospital Safety (Leapfrog Group), and is recognized by the American Nurses Credentialing Center as a Magnet Hospital. Mercy Medical Center is part of Mercy Health Services (MHS), the parent of Mercy’s primary care and specialty care physician enterprise, known as Mercy Personal Physicians, which employs more than 200 providers with locations in Baltimore, Lutherville, Overlea, Glen Burnie, Columbia and Reisterstown. For more information about Mercy, visit, MDMercyMedia on FacebookTwitter, or call 1-800-MD-Mercy.

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