What's the Normal Weight Gain for Babies?

Everyone is unique in their own way. When we closely examine the babies, we may find that some of them are slimmer whereas others are fatter; some may be taller whereas others are shorter. With these many sizes and shapes, how can we actually know the ideal height or weight for our kids or whether their growth is normal or not? What problems may be associated with the children’s growth? Or of all the questions: as a mother, should I be worried about my baby’s growth and height at all?

Normal Baby Weight Gain for 0-12 Months Olds

Parents read a lot about the specifics and details of normal growth in this age group. A full term infant must have an average weight at birth of 3.3 kg or 7 lb 4 oz. With elimination of excess fluids, the weight reduces to almost 10% within the first week of birthand thus must be regained by 2 weeks of age. Bottle-fed infants regain the required birth weight rather sooner than the ones fed by breast milk.

In the initial 3 months, infants put on about 1 kg each month. From 3-6 months, weight gain reduces to 1/2 kg/month; from 6-9 months, it becomes 1/3, and for 9-12 months, it settles to 1/4 kg. In full term infants, the birth weight doubles in the 4th month and triples when they reach 12 months of age.

The following chart will guide you more clearly about the normal baby weight gain in the first 12 months. This information is in accordance with “child growth standards of WHO.”

Months of Age

Boys (KG)

Girls (KG)

Newborn

3.3

3.2

1

3.5-4.4

3.32-4.1

2

4.7-5.4

4.35-5

3

5.6-6.2

5.2-5.7

4

7

6.4

5

7.5

6.9

6

7.9

7.3

7

8.3

7.7

8

8.6

7.95

9

8.9

8.2

10

9.2

8.5

11

9.4

8.7

12

9.7

8.95

How to Naturally Encourage Baby Weight Gain 

To help the baby gain the normal weight for his age can be tricky, especially during his first year of life. Following information will help in assuring that the baby is taking appropriate food and has the normal weight recommended for the respective month.

1. Newborns

Initial loss of few ounces isn’t a thing to fret about. Babies regain their birth weight soon within 10-12 days.

What to feed: Breast milk or formula. Consult your doctor before opting for any of these two as the baby may have reaction.

2. 1-3 Months Olds

If feeding is successful, your baby will be steadily gaining weight, by 5-7ounces per week in first 2 months to about 4 ounces in their 3rd month. Feeding times aren’t precise, and it’s okay if you just can’t figure out how much milk your baby needs. Try to feed every 2-3 hours or 8-12 times each day and carefully monitor if your baby is getting enough milk. Also, check if your baby is sucking properly since improper sucking can cause eating problem.

What to feed: Breast milk or formula. Don’t start to introduce solids until your baby is 4-6 months old.

3. 4-6 Months Olds

The transition in baby’s diet from liquid to solid during this period may be a tricky thing. So, try to be slow when beginning to introduce solids to your child. In addition, the birth weight doubles when your baby reaches the age of 5-6 months. And you can check with the doctor if there’s a problem with your baby’s weight gain when having their check-up.

What to feed: Breast milk and formula followed by fruits and veggies, then baby foods like single grain foods if your baby is ready. When the baby is 6 months old, you can try to introduce pureed meat.

4. 7-9 Months Olds

Your baby will put on 2 lb each month. And to keep the weight gain steady and take in adequate nutrients, allow the baby to snack often. If he put on much less or more weight than normal in a month, then you should take him to see a doctor.

What to feed: Breast milk or formula and blended fruits, veggies and meat purees. Finger foods may be introduced when baby is 8 months old and baby cereal when he is 9 months old.

5. 10-12 Months Olds

Your baby will be more active which will cost him quite some calories, so he is less likely to gain weight exceeding 2 pounds during this period. The night time feeding times will decrease, and the birth weight is likely to triple as he reaches the age of 1 year.

What to feed: Breast milk and formula along with finger food and green veggies. Noodles and fruits like apples in small pieces are fine, too.

When Should I Be Concerned If Baby Weight Gain Is off the Track?

If your baby is 50% of the normal weight and then reduces all the way to 15%, then it’s certainly thought provoking and the doctor will require analyzing of situation. An insignificant illness or eating pattern changes may produce an impact on the baby’s weight. However, if your baby gradually loses weight even when he’s not sick, then the doctor may recommend that you increase the number of feedings each day. For underweight babies, a quick gain of ounces helps maintaining the ideal weight respective to their age.

If the baby is quite short and the parents are also short, then it will be normal for the baby to be placed in the bottom range of 5%. However, if the baby is short or slender, but the parents are opposite, then the doctor will check for any growth associated problems. If the baby is at the highest 5%, then the doctor will monitor his growth in case the baby heads out for obesity.