Customizing MFP Goals for Pregnancy/Breastfeeding

Please note:   I am know very little about nutrition and I just looked up sources using the Intern...

Please note: I am know very little about nutrition and I just looked up sources using the Internet to figure my values out. I wanted to share them because maybe it will be useful to someone; I couldn't find anything helpful online that told me what to do and I doubt seeing a nutritionist is necessary at this point.  If you don't follow my blog, I'm pregnant AND still Breastfeeding so my nutritional needs are "off" from what MyFitnessPal recommends on its own. I love the program (been tracking 445 days!) so I wanted to stick with it instead of changing programs.

Now that my nutritional needs are different for pregnancy though, I wanted to adjust my values so I could track my intake better to make sure I was meeting recommend amounts of different foods/nutrients. It isn't as super easy as I had hoped, especially with the lack of info for pregnant breastfeeding moms so I'll explain my process and how I decided what to do. If you really need to be careful, DEFINITELY see a nutritionist to get the real amounts for your needs. I'm mostly doing this because I'm a bit OCD and it makes me happy. Haha.

I do really like MyFitnessPal (FREE!) for keeping track of my diet. It's just simple. I lost a lot of weight using it, but I also really like being able to check out my protein intake, etc. It's really convenient. Of course, you can just listen to baby... he/she WILL probably let you know if your protein is low by requesting a Big Mac. Haha. Again, I really enjoy tracking this stuff though so why not... 

How to Change Goals

Login to your MFP account on a computer. Go to GOALS at the top, change goals, custom, then add in your amounts. Afterwards there's a button at the bottom that says "change goals" again to save it. 

Here's my page... I ignored the right side and didn't touch the types of fats, cholesterol, or sugars. I think those may have auto adjusted seeing MFP had a mind of its own sometimes while I was trying to adjust. Be aware to check back over your numbers after. It was going nuts when I changed the percentages (carbs/proteins/fat).
Breastfeeding and Pregnant Amounts I Used

I've currently got my calories set for 2300. When I was just breastfeeding I was eating 2,000/day and maintaining my weight (145-148 lbs at 5'6"). Now that I'm in my second trimester, I increased my caloric requirements to 2,300/day, although my midwife suggested that I may want to be closer to 2,500/day. I am keeping it at 2,300 and just eating more if I feel hungry. 

I read that you want your carbohydrates while pregnant to be about 50-60% of your daily caloric intake. I set mine for 55%. I couldn't find a value for pregnant and breastfeeding.

I read that fiber intakes of 21 grams or more per day can reduce your risk of preeclampsia. I saw somewhere else that 20-35 grams is recommended. I figure that's one I won't worry if I go over, but I set it to my bare minimum desired amount which was 21 grams.

Gosh I hope I calculated everything correctly. Iron intake during pregnancy I read is supposed to be about 27 grams per day. MFP says "100% of daily value" which I'm assuming is based off the daily recommended value for my age and being a woman: 18 mg. Math: (27 mg/ 18 mg) x 100% = New Percentage. So mine is set for 150%.

Vitamin A
I didn't touch this. Too much Vitamin A is dangerous and according to what I read it's pretty easy to meet the requirements without trying. I kept it at 100% DV.

Vitamin C
Normally I'd have a recommended Vitamin C amount of 75 mg if I'm understanding the DV correctly so assuming that this is the number MFP uses for 100% DV, I got a value of 160% for the recommended amount of 120 mg. 

Math: (120/75) x 100 = 160%

This seemed to be the same as the normal requirements if I understand everything correctly so I kept the 100% daily value.

There's a value for pregnancy which is lower, but the breastfeeding value was higher, 5100 mg, so I used that. My problem right now is that it LOOKS like I'm severely under on my potassium requirements, but I think the issue is that some foods don't have the potassium amounts entered SO I'm eating potassium in my diet but it isn't showing up. I also don't know if breastfeeding AND being pregnant should increase the amount even more. I am going to have a hard time getting enough potassium from what I can tell... I don't like bananas THAT much.

I put at 2,300 mg/day. From what I understand you don't want to go crazy, but you can eat salt to taste during pregnancy.

MFP calculates protein for you based on percentages so I was reading that I should get 75-100 grams of protein per day. A 15% value put me at 90 g so I figured that was a fair amount to aim for. I drank protein shakes per a birth class recommendation last pregnancy and had a 10 lb 12 oz baby so I am avoiding any unnatural forms of protein and also maintaining a lower protein value than that birth class recommends as I blame them for the c-section that I ended up having (I had great sugar levels and no high birth weight history in my family, at least not to that degree). My midwife said some places recommend a much higher amount than is normal and it's not necessary. 

I read to put that at 35% maximum.

And that's it... I really need to work now on increasing my exercise. While chasing Baby G around (my 20 month old) is crazy amounts of tiring, I think a nice cardio workout would really be a nice addition. I feel bad saying I don't exercise while pregnant. I just... run up and down stairs, chase screaming toddlers, make a million trips back and forth to the time out chair, do funny dances to make him laugh, and run through the sprinkler with him outside. But when asked if I "exercise"... eh... I don't think anyone counts that, even if I'm still more active than many people. 



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DIY Danielle: Customizing MFP Goals for Pregnancy/Breastfeeding
Customizing MFP Goals for Pregnancy/Breastfeeding
DIY Danielle
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