When you’re pregnant, there are plenty of areas you’re going to be worried about. You’re going to monitor blood pressure and perhaps blood glucose levels, in order to watch out for conditions such as preeclampsia or gestational diabetes. One of the areas that you need to watch during pregnancy is your weight gain. Every woman should gain some weight during pregnancy. While the amount of weight gain during pregnancy that you should experience can vary based on your BMI before you became pregnant, the fact of the matter is you need to not gain too much weight or lose any weight whatsoever during your pregnancy.
If you gain too much weight while you’re pregnant, you create certain risks. Here are some of the problems that can come from gaining too much weight during pregnancy:
- You’re at a higher risk for needing a c-section. Women who gain too much weight when they are pregnant may be at a higher risk for a cesarean delivery.
- You may retain too much weight after your pregnancy. You may not be able to take some of those extra pounds off, putting you at a higher risk for being overweight for a subsequent pregnancy. That, of course, poses additional risks such as gestational diabetes.
- Babies of women who gain too much weight may grow large before birth. This can create birthing complications.
- There is some evidence that suggests that babies whose mothers are overweight at the begging of pregnancy may actually be more likely to become overweight later in life.
- Being overweight can cause trouble with breastfeeding. A woman that gains too much weight may experience poor milk production, and it may be difficult to position your baby for breastfeeding.
There are downsides to not gaining enough weight, as well. The biggest risk is delivering your baby before she’s due – known as a “preterm” baby. Preterm birth can create a number of potential health problems for your baby, and if it occurs too early on it can even be fatal for your baby.
The best way to control your weight gain during pregnancy is to eat a balanced diet. Participate in an exercise program that suits your lifestyle and your pregnancy, and realize that “eating for two” means only eating with your baby in mind, not consuming tons of extra calories.