Your baby is preparing for life outside the womb in many ways. Learn how their lungs and nerves are developing in week 25 of pregnancy. To support the rapid growth and development ahead, you’ll need to add more calories to your balanced diet during your third trimester. Discover how many more you’ll need and how to get them, while maximising your nutritional intake.
Your baby's development at 25 weeks
Feeling hiccups at 25 weeks
In week 25 of pregnancy, your baby measures about 22cm long from head to bottom and weighs roughly 700g (1½lbs)1. The umbilical cord is now thick and strong, with one vein and two arteries running through it1, delivering essential nutrients and oxygen to your baby and passing out waste for your own body to process2.
With improved coordination, your baby can now make a fist and reach for their feet1, and you may feel them moving around in response to touch on the outside of your bump3. You may also feel the tiny rhythmic movements that indicate your baby has hiccups4.
Internally, their lungs are getting ready for their first breath, and they are already producing surfactant, a substance that helps these vital organs function normally after birth4. Meanwhile, the nerves around their mouth are developing1. These will help your baby find your nipple by using the sense of touch in the early stages of breastfeeding1.
Your baby’s hearing has advanced to the extent where they may now be able to recognise your partner’s voice and find some types of music more soothing than others.
The gift of future health
Add a little extra
Now you’ve nearly reached your third trimester of pregnancy, you’ll need to increase your daily calorie intake to support your baby’s rapid growth and development. According to The Department of Health, women should have around 200 calories more a day in the last trimester of pregnancy5.
However, everyone is different, and the amount of calories you need will depend on your metabolism, how active you are, and how many babies you’re expecting, among other factors.
Whatever your situation, you should still be maintaining a healthy, balanced diet, and it’s important that your extra calories come from healthy, nutritious foods.
Try some of the following nutritious 200-calorie pregnancy snacks:
- A mini toasted pitta, filled with a tablespoon of reduced-fat hummus and grated carrot, followed by three dried apricots
- A small bowl of muesli with semi-skimmed milk, and an apple
- Two slices of wholegrain bread, with a tablespoon of cottage cheese
- A low-fat yogurt with six almonds
- Two slices of malt loaf, without spread
1. Deans A. Your New Pregnancy Bible, The experts’ guide to pregnancy and early parenthood. 4th ed. London: Carroll & Brown Publishers Limited, 2013. p. 43.
2. NHS UK. What is the umbilical cord? [Online]. 2013. Available at: www.nhs.uk/chq/pages/2299.aspx?categoryid=54 [Accessed July 2014]
3. NHS UK. You and your baby at 25-28 weeks pregnant [Online]. 2013. Available at: www.nhs.uk/Conditions/pregnancy-and-baby/pages/pregnancy-weeks-25-26-27-28.aspx [Accessed July 2014]
4. Murkoff H, Mazel S. What to Expect When You’re Expecting. 4th ed. London: Simon & Schuster Ltd, 2009. p. 261.
5. Department of Health. Report on Health and Social Subjects 41. Dietary Reference Values for Food Energy and Nutrients for the United Kingdom. London: TSO, 1991.
Last reviewed: 14th July 2016
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