pregnancy | week by week
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Week 18: Your Baby Is Listening!
Hearing and other exciting developments.
During your 18th week of pregnancy, your baby’s No. 1 priority is growing. Take a look at some of the developmental changes that are happening at Week 18:
- This week, your baby is about 5 1/2 inches long, or about the length of a large tomato.
- Your baby’s skeleton continues to harden during the 18th week of your pregnancy. Her leg bones and inner ear bones are the first to ossify (harden).
- Your baby can now hear. She might hear your heartbeat or your tummy gurgle.
- Your baby might hear loud sounds coming from outside the womb.
- You might feel your baby start to move -- which might feel like little flutters -- as early as the 18th week of pregnancy. This is called quickening. The next time you see your doctor, let him or her know about any fetal movement.
Serving Sizes for Moms-to-be
Keep an eye on portions during pregnancy.
As you move further into your second trimester, make sure you are eating right every day. Here’s a reminder of what -- and how much -- you should be eating daily:
- 3 cups of calcium-rich foods, including low-fat milk, yogurt, and cottage cheese.
- 3 cups of vegetables -- and at least 2 cups should be folate-rich choices, such as broccoli, Brussels sprouts or spinach.
- 2 cups of fruit, such as apples, pears and strawberries.
- 8 ounces of whole grains, such as whole-wheat bread, oatmeal, or wild rice (that’s eight servings; a serving is one slice of bread or 1/2 cup of rice).
- 6 1/2 ounces of lean protein and legumes, such as lean ground beef, chicken breast, pork tenderloin, almonds and lentils (that’s about two 3-ounce servings; a serving is a cut of meat about the size of a deck of cards).
- You should be eating about 300 calories more per day now than you were consuming pre-pregnancy.