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Nevada Women’s Care

Why Being Overweight Can Affect Your Pregnancy

If you’re planning to get pregnant, losing those excess pounds to reach your ideal healthy weight can benefit you and your baby. Shedding the extra weight can lead to added physical energy as well as minimize the risk of health problems or pregnancy complications.

According to experts, it is also more difficult to become pregnant with the extra weight. Being overweight can affect ovulation patterns and influence hormonal levels associated with conceiving.

To get a better chance of pregnancy, the ideal BMI (body mass index) is between 20 and 25. Over 25 and you’re considered overweight. Obesity sets in if the BMI is 30 and above. With obesity, the chances of conceiving a child significantly decrease.

In a 2008 study conducted in the Netherlands, it was discovered that women increasingly became less fertile as they approached a BMI of over 29. The likelihood of conceiving a child decreased by 4 percent, equivalent to the decline of pregnancy chances as one celebrates another year of age.

The study also revealed that an average woman with a healthy weight will get pregnant after three months of trying. On the other hand, an overweight female will have to wait for up to eight months to conceive.

Health problems may also start to set in as the BMI gets higher. For obese women (those having a BMI of 30 or over), they are at a higher risk of developing gestational diabetes compared to women with a lower BMI. Pregnancy-related diabetes can also contribute to birth difficulties, preeclampsia and high blood pressure.

Babies of overweight mothers tend to be overweight, as well. In addition, these babies may likely incur serious health problems like certain cancers, diabetes and heart disease.

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