UK Doctors: Lose Weight before Getting Pregnant

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Creative Commons License photo credit: Miran Rijavec

According to recent advice given from the Royal College of Obstetricians, women who are overweight are better off – and their baby will be at lower risk – if they lose weight before becoming pregnant.

It’s thought that around 40,000 women in the UK each year give birth. According to the doctor group, these women are at risk for a number of health problems and difficulties during pregnancy, including things like:

  • Blood clots
  • Gestational diabetes
  • High blood pressure
  • Preeclampsia

In addition to the risks that being obese poses to the mother, there are several risks to baby, including:

  • Neural tube defects
  • Large birth weight
  • Stillbirth

On top of all of that, babies born to obese women have greater odds of themselves being overweight or obese later on.

More C-sections

Another factor in the group’s advice has to do with labor. Women who are obese tend to have a more difficult time with labor. Accordingly, obese women have a higher rate of c-sections than other women.

No weight loss during pregnancy

The group also recommends that pregnancy isn’t the time to try to lose weight. Even if you’re obese when you become pregnant, you still need to gain a little bit of weight during a normal and healthy pregnancy.

Not eating for two

One of the common mistakes people make when thinking about pregnancy and dietary needs is that the pregnant woman is “eating for two.” While that’s true in terms of making the right choices about types of food to eat, it doesn’t mean doubling up on calories. The group recommends pregnant women get about an additional 300 calories a day during pregnancy.

Lose the weight first

The recommendations, then, are that an obese woman lose weight before becoming pregnant.

So, what do you think? Is obesity a good reason to put off pregnancy?

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