Is weight loss recommended during pregnancy?
Doctors usually don't suggest losing weight during pregnancy even if you are obese, however IOM:Institute of Medicine in its 1990 guidelines suggest that overweight women should put on some weight at least 15 to 25 pounds during pregnancy. But it has been shown that children have high risk of congenital heart defects, neural tube defects, and other severe health problems born to obese women. This has raised a question, whether doctors should recommend weight loss for obese women to maintain or lose weight during pregnancy.
What should women NOT do to lose weight during pregnancy?
Throughout pregnancy you should not do any activity that is risky and increase the chance of abdominal trauma.
The following are the activities you should avoid during pregnancy:
- Diet: Don't try to diet when you are pregnant. You should never think of losing weight unless your specialist suggests it to you. Don't start a weight loss program after you know that you are pregnant. Dieting can deprive your baby of essential vitamins, minerals and calories.
- Heavy lifting: Think carefully how to lift objects while you are pregnant. You already strain your back by carrying your baby, lifting heavy items increases the chance of back injury. Heavy weights can trigger contractions and can cause miscarriage.
- Heavy exercises: Moderate exercise is usually recommended during pregnancy, performing exercises where your heart rate goes up to 160bpm involves risk such as insufficient oxygen to the baby, which may lead to fetal hypoxia; In this condition the oxygen to the fetal brain is restricted which further result in brain damage.
- Running: As your belly grows your center of gravity's shifting, leaving you more susceptible to falls and slips. Avoid running during pregnancy for safety. You can lose your balance and can fall hitting your abdomen on the ground. This may lead to abdomen trauma.
Side effects of weight loss during pregnancy
Some researchers believe that if a mother is not gaining weight then she is actually losing due to the increasing weights of the pregnancy component. This means she is metabolizing fat, which may lead to ketones to be liberated in her blood. This may be toxic to developing brains. Ketones can be roughly measured in the urine by using a dipstick. It is important to check ketones if the woman is losing weight or experiencing vomiting and nausea.
How to manage weight during pregnancy?
You should learn to manage weight during pregnancy. Eating healthy foods and exercising, both are very important. But you have to take certain precautions when you are pregnant. Try to stay stress free and focus on your body to stay in shape as your belly grows bigger. You start a well - balanced diet not only to maintain your weight but also to reduce the risk of preeclampsia, and gestational diabetes during pregnancy. Try low impact exercise such as swimming, walking, as well as low impact aerobics; It is imperative that you talk to your physician before starting any new excercise regime.
Safety tips to lose weight during pregnancy
Although some women are already overweight when they get pregnant, they should never try to lose weight or go on a diet. They instead should adopt healthy eating habits.
Following are the tips to stay fit during pregnancy:
- Snack on fresh veggies and fruits; they are low in calories and fat but are rich in vitamins
- Always eat cereals, bread, and crackers made of whole grains.
- Prefer low fat dairy products; Take at least four servings of milk based products. Using 1% skim milk helps to decrease fat and calories that you consume. Eat fat free yogurt or cheese.
More health advice on YourTango: