When You're Expecting Twins, Triplets, or Quads: Proven Guidelines for a Healthy Multiple Pregnancy

When You're Expecting Twins, Triplets, or Quads: Proven Guidelines for a Healthy Multiple Pregnancy

When You're Expecting Twins, Triplets, or Quads: Proven Guidelines for a Healthy Multiple Pregnancy

When You're Expecting Twins, Triplets, or Quads: Proven Guidelines for a Healthy Multiple Pregnancy

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When You’re Expecting Twins, Triplets, or Quads by Dr. Barbara Luke & Tamara Eberlein is the revolutionary, nutritionally based prenatal program for the growing number of women pregnant with multiples. Revised and expanded for an era when multiple births are on the rise, the third edition of When You’re Expecting Twins, Triplets, or Quads includes updated diet and exercise recommendations for the postpartum mother as well as twenty-five new recipes.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780061803079
Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date: 12/28/2010
Edition description: Third Edition
Pages: 496
Product dimensions: 9.40(w) x 11.34(h) x 0.88(d)

About the Author

Barbara Luke, Sc.D., M.P.H., R.N., R.D., is a professor in the Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology, and Reproductive Biology at Michigan State University. She has published numerous research studies on multiple pregnancy through the University Consortium on Multiple Births, with colleagues from universities around the country. She is also the author of Every Pregnant Woman's Guide to Preventing Premature Birth and coauthor, with Tamara Eberlein, of Program Your Baby's Health.

Tamara Eberlein, an award-winning health journalist, has published hundreds of articles on health, parenting, and psychology. She is the author of four books, including Sleep: How to Teach Your Child to Sleep Like a Baby. She is also the mother of twins.

Read an Excerpt

When You're Expecting Twins, Triplets, or Quads, Revised Edition
Proven Guidelines for a Healthy Multiple Pregnancy

Chapter One

Your Unique Pregnancy

Tamara: As I lay flat on the examining table, the radiology technician smeared my belly with greasy jelly, then turned the screen toward me. I was about to catch my first glimpse of the baby that had been growing inside me for 18 weeks.

But as she slid the probe across my abdomen, she began to frown. Pushing the screen to one side to block my view, she fiddled with the knobs. Then she stepped into the hall to summon a doctor. Together, they manipulated the dials of the ultrasound machine, whispering and pointing.

Trying to squelch a sudden rush of fear, I choked out the words: "What is it? Is something wrong with my baby?"

The doctor turned the screen to face me again and said, "Well, here's what we've got. This is a leg, and an arm, and this is the head. And now, over here, we see a foot, and a back, and another head — twins! And they look just fine."

If you too have joined the ranks of expectant mothers of multiples — twins, triplets, even quadruplets or more — congratulations! You're now in a special group whose membership is swelling more and more each year. Between 1975 and 2000, twin births rose by 100 percent. During that same period, the birthrate of "supertwins" or "higher-order multiples" (meaning three or more babies born together) surged a whopping 587 percent.

You've probably got a thousand questions and concerns about your pregnancy, but chances are, you've had trouble finding the answers you need."As soon as I found out that I was going to have twins, I read everything I could find on the subject. Yet most pregnancy books have only a page or two about multiples, and the books devoted to twins focus on taking care of the babies after they're born," says Judy Levy, mother of twin girls and an older daughter.

Or perhaps you succeeded in finding some material on multiple pregnancy but were put off by its gloom-and-doom tone. "Everything I read about having twins seemed so frightening, as if the writers were saying, 'You will definitely have all sorts of problems — and your babies will too.' I couldn't bear to read that scary stuff," says Stacy Moore, mother of twin boys. "What I really needed was some sensible advice on the specific steps I could take to avoid complications and give my babies the best possible start in life. And I found it — at a special clinic for expectant mothers of multiples, where I learned that many problems associated with multiple births are preventable. I did everything they told me to do, and my whole pregnancy went very smoothly. My twins were born big and healthy at full term, weighing 6 lb., 11 oz., and 6 lb., 1 oz."

Dr. Luke: Here's where I come in. As a professor of obstetrics and gynecology at the University of Michigan Medical School in Ann Arbor, and a researcher and nutritionist, I founded the clinic that Stacy Moore attended, and directed it for six years. This is the Multiples Clinic we refer to throughout the book, and many of the mothers quoted participated in this program.

I'm now a professor at the University of Miami School of Medicine in Miami, Florida, where I'm working with experts from renowned universities across the country, as the University Consortium on Multiple Births.

Our goal is to improve pregnancy outcomes — in other words, to help our patients have the healthiest pregnancies and the healthiest babies. To achieve that, we provide special prenatal care, including patient education, risk screening, and intensive nutrition therapy.

The Multiples Clinic program works. Our clinical success proves it. Compared to the average mother of multiples, women who follow our guidelines experience significantly fewer complications before the birth of their children. For instance:

  • Our expectant mothers develop fewer infections.

  • They have less trouble with high blood pressure and preeclampsia.

  • The moms in our program have a lower incidence of preterm premature rupture of the membranes.

  • Our patients are hospitalized for preterm labor less frequently, and they spend fewer days in the hospital if they are admitted. For infants born to our moms, the results are even more impressive:

  • Triplets born to mothers in our program weigh 35 percent more at birth, on average, than triplets typically do. That's very significant, given that the average birthweight for triplets nationwide is just half that of the average singleton.

  • Our twins are generally born 20 percent heavier than the average twins delivered at the same gestational age.

  • Two out of three of our newborns weigh more than 5½ pounds at birth, and one out of four is born weighing more than 6 pounds. These birthweight figures, which are significantly better than the average for infants of multiple-gestation pregnancies, prove that you can break the "rule" that says twins are always born small.

  • Sixty percent of our mothers of twins deliver at 36 weeks or later, compared to only about 40 percent of twin moms nationwide.

  • Our babies are healthier at birth, regardless of when they are born, because they have grown well right from the start of the pregnancy.

  • Infants born to patients in our program go home sooner than the average multiple-birth baby, spending only half as much time in the hospital. (Their hospital bills are only half the average too!)
When You're Expecting Twins, Triplets, or Quads, Revised Edition
Proven Guidelines for a Healthy Multiple Pregnancy
. Copyright © by Barbara Luke. Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold.

Table of Contents

Chapter 1Your Unique Pregnancy1
Chapter 2The Best Medical Care for Expectant Mothers of Multiples29
Chapter 3Weight-Gain Goals and Nutrition Know-How53
Chapter 4Putting Your Food Plan into Action81
Chapter 5Your Body: How to Look Good, Feel Great, Work Smart, and Play It Safe118
Chapter 6Pregnancy Complications: How to Lower Your Risk143
Chapter 7The Emotional Ups and Downs of Pregnancy ... Multiplied177
Chapter 8Giving Birth to All Those Babies195
Chapter 9Your Babies Hospital Experience: The Nursery and the NICU216
Chapter 10Feeding the Masses ... Including the Busy New Mom249
Chapter 11Survival Tips for Those Crazy First Months at Home271
Chapter 12Becoming One Big Happy Family292
Appendix ABest Recipes for Moms-to-Be of Multiples307
Appendix BResources for Parents of Multiples367
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