Dr. Morice and Atchafalaya Gynecology and Obstetrics specialize in tubal reversal surgery and infertility treatments. Dr. Morice also provides excellent OB-GYN care for women of
all ages. Our patients are overjoyed by their pregnancies and want to make sure they’re doing everything they can to ensure a healthy baby.
A new study analyzed the relationship between weight gain during pregnancy and childhood obesity. The study shows that gaining too little or too much during pregnancy can increase the risk of childhood obesity.
Women who are average weight are advised to gain between 25 and 35 pounds during pregnancy. Those underweight should gain between 25 and 40 pounds, and those overweight should gain 15 to 25 pounds.
The study analyzed more than 4,000 women beginning at pregnancy to when their children were 2-5 years old. The study found that women of normal weight who gained more than the recommended weight had a 79% increased risk of having a child with obesity than those who gained the recommended amount. Women who did not gain enough weight had a 63% increased risk of their child being obese.
The researchers were quick to point out that more than 50% of pregnant women gain more than the recommended amount. Only 10% gain less than the recommended amount. Therefore, the researchers want to highlight that because gaining too much or too little can be harmful, the emphasis is on staying within the healthy weight gain range.
What contributes to the 25-35 pounds gained during pregnancy? The below breakdown from WebMD helps explain:
- Baby: 8 pounds
- Placenta: 2-3 pounds
- Amniotic fluid: 2-3 pounds
- Breast tissue: 2-3 pounds
- Blood supply: 4 pounds
- Stored fat for delivery and breastfeeding: 5-9 pounds
- Larger uterus: 2-5 pounds
Total: 25-35 pounds
While many women see pregnancy as an excuse to eat everything in sight, physicians have different views. The Institute of Medicine recommends that women do not increase their caloric intake during the first trimester. During the second trimester, caloric intake should be increased by 340 calories per day, and 450 calories per day during the third trimester.