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Overweight and pregnant

What are the benefits and consequences of weight during pregnancy?
(March 2, 2011)

Pregnancy can be one of the most joyful experiences of a woman’s life; however, it is essential for women to look after their health during pregnancy, to avoid any complications or risks to their unborn babies. This is probably why many women start making healthy dietary and lifestyle changes up to a year before they plan to get pregnant, just so that they can increase their chances of a smooth and safe pregnancy. This step is usually recommended for all women, especially those who are obese or even a bit overweight. There are many health risks that overweight women are exposed to and being overweight and pregnant at the same time could increase the number of health risks faced, not just by the mother, but also by the baby.

After getting pregnant, there are several women who believe that they have to “eat for two”, in order to ensure that their babies are getting all the nutrients required for growth and development.


However, weight gain during pregnancy too should be controlled; while the exact weight for each woman may vary a bit, doctors usually advise women to gain no more than 1 pound or so, every week. Gaining excessive amounts of weight due to a high-calorie diet could lead to many health complications for the child as well as the mother. Therefore, in order to prevent an overweight pregnant belly, women should continue to follow a diet that is high in nutrients, but restricts the amount of fat and calories consumed in a day. There are many exercises too, like walking, swimming and Pilates that are good for pregnant women and can also help them maintain a healthy weight during the course of their pregnancy.

Health risks faced by overweight pregnant women

Unfortunately, there are many health risks that an overweight pregnant woman and her baby are highly susceptible too. Given below are some of the common conditions that could affect obese pregnant or even overweight pregnant women:

• High blood pressure or gestational hypertension
• Eclampsia and Preeclampsia
• Gestational diabetes
• Premature delivery

Some of the problems that may be seen in those children that are born to overweight pregnant women include

• Low birth weight, especially in case of preterm labor
• Obesity in childhood
• Certain birth defects or infections 
• Unstable body temperature

In case of those women who are morbidly obese and pregnant at the same time, it may be best to seek professional assistance in drafting an eating plan as well as an exercise routine, which can help shed some of the excess pounds, without depriving the baby of any essential nutrients and without causing any harm. There is a lot of useful information for obese pregnant women, easily available through various resources, such as online sites, fitness articles and television shows; however, the health tips provided by such sources are very generic and therefore, may not be suitable for all women who are overweight and pregnant at the same time. Therefore, all obese and overweight pregnant women are strongly advised to check with their doctors and get a go ahead, before using any such tips.

Submitted by A M on March 2, 2011 at 10:33

 

Advice on Overweight during Pregnancy

Controlling weight is very important during pregnancy to avoid any complications during that period. Excess weight during pregnancy can threaten future baby's health, it may cause hormonal exchange defects and regulation of ovaries function, premature miscarriages and also sterility. It is important to plan a pregnancy in advance to avoid any such hazards for that you need to control your weight form start. If your BMI is between 25-30 prior conceiving then you are considered overweight and if it is above 30 then you are considered obese. BMI is a tool to state the range of body fat which uses the relation between height and weight. Now when you know which category you fall in then the next step is to think how much weight you should gain now during pregnancy. You should ideally gain weight between 7-11 kg by the end of your pregnancy. Experts suggest around 12 kg for a woman who falls under the healthy BMI of 18-25. However it would not be advisable to lose weight or go on any diets during pregnancy where the needs are increased. You can definitely control the amount of fats, junk foods like pizzas, burgers, hot dogs, cheese, sodas, colas and sweets as these foods do not provide significant amounts of other nutrients besides fats and sugars.
Submitted by S M on April 17, 2008 at 10:51

 

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