Mariska Hargitay on pregnancy, gestational diabetes, and gaining (and losing!) 54 lbs

01/01/2007 at 08:41 PM ET

On June 28, 2006, actress Mariska Hargitay, 42, and her husband Peter Hermann welcomed their first child, a 10-pound, 9-ounce son named August, now 6 months. Mariska graces the cover of Self Magazine‘s January issue and discusses pregnancy and motherhood, including her issues with gestational diabetes, which led to August’s large birth weight and an emergency c-section delivery. For more scans and interview highlights, click below.

When she first learned she was pregnant, Mariska said she was more than ecstatic:  "Nobody wanted to be pregnant more than me.  From the minute I found out, I was wearing full-on maternity pants.  My stomach was totally flat, mind you, but I was just so excited."

But the 15-hour work days on the set of Law and Order: SVU combined with the stress of an increase in episodes filmed each week caused Mariska to resort to food for comfort.  She says, "I was overwhelmed by my lack of energy.  All I could do to survive was to eat."

By her third trimester, Mariska had gained 54 pounds and contracted gestational diabetes, which caused her to make some changes in what she ate. "First time pregnant, you’re like, I gotta eat more!  I have to make sure he has enough of every single food group!  I did get into eating too much.  This pregnancy was really hard for me at the end.  I wasn’t mobile.  Next time, I want to keep myself as strong as possible, so everything will go easier for me."

With hopes of getting pregnant again soon, Mariska enlisted the help of Peak Performance, a gym in New York City.  She says, "After getting pregnant I felt so different about my body. I felt like it was a sanctuary, like August’s house. It was like, somebody lives there now—I’ve got to keep it nice and strong and healthy for him. And so now I’m thinking that someone else is going to live there someday soon, so I’ve got to get it ready. It’s very exciting." When she first started working out three times per week with her trainer, Jay Wright, Mariska felt intimidated, but soon found the hard work helped her get her pre-baby body back.

In addition, because she is breast-feeding, she made some changes to her diet, which also helped her slim down.  She focuses on eating in balance – lean meats with lots of vegetables and fruit – and keeps that great perspective that makes her one of our favorite celebrity moms. She says, "For me, it was never about how I looked.  I’m a mom now… I feel like a superhero!" She even took her belly pouch in stride: "After my c-section, I had a pouch on my belly for a long time, which has started going away, but all I can say is that it was a badge of honor. I was so proud of it. I felt like I joined the coolest club in the world—the mom’s club."

Source: Self magazine, January 2007 issue, pages 24-25

Thanks to CBB reader Jane. Huge thanks to SVU fan Joan for taking the time to scan everything!

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Showing 15 comments

madam pince on

What a great mom. I loved Mariska before her pregnancy, but she’s even cooler now. I wish her and Peter more babies and lots of happiness with August.

FC on

Mariska is just awesome. I can feel the love of her pregnancy and how much she wanted to be a mother through her words. Love her, and I love that shot of her and August, even if I’ve seen it before. It’s too adorable. :)

teenyz on

Awe. August definitely has his daddy’s eyes.

cindi on

he is just too adorable for words, and they are an adorable family! what a wonderful mom she is.

fumar on

This is by far my favourite celebrity baby family! I love Mariska’s attitude towards everything, she’s someone I can look up to when I eventually have children.

Not to mention her son is just the handsomest little guy ever!! He looks so happy!

Corinne on

She seems like a wonderful mom and her son is really cute.

tink1217 on

I just love her!! She explains pregnancy the same way I would. I hope she and Peter can have another soon, maybe a little girl! AND, I am printing out a pic of her so I can show my hairdresser…I LOVE her color and cut!!

Hailey's Mommy on

Wow, I LOVED reading this! What beautiful words! I also had gestational diabeties and my daughter was 9lbs 3 oz when she was born. I still have my “badge of honor” as she described! lol!

What a great story and a beautiful Mother and Child. It made me smile!

vicky24c on

Thats so cute! I love Mariska and August is soo cute!

Yonni on

She rocks! I love her!!

Amy on

I just wanted to point out the overeating and gaining a lot of weight does not lead to gestational diabetes. There is no known cause of it.

PSB on

She sounds so normal for a celebrity. I love that she’s so excited about being a mom and I hope she’s able to get pregnant as sson as possible (preferably without having to undergo IVF or other invasive procedures).

Doreen on

Wow, she is so FAB!! Love her and wow she looks sooo different! Loved reading this article.

antij1 on

I just love Mariska! She’s such a strong, positive, and pleasant person.

Mrsgrugsplat on

I Lovve her so much and can relate to her even more now concidering I had gestational Diabetes and it is so good to hear someone like her is coming out raising awarness os this and what it can do with regards to babies size

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