Too much weight gain unhealthy for pregnant obese women

May 30th, 2009 - 5:03 pm ICT by ANI  

Washington, May 30 (ANI): Too much weight gain during pregnancy can be dangerous for overweight obese women, say researchers.

According to the revised guidelines issued by the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG), overweight women should gain about not more than 15 pounds during pregnancy.

During the study, the researchers analysed how these guidelines make a difference in maternal-fetal outcomes.

They recruited 232 obese pregnant women, all of whom had a body mass index (BMI) of 30 or greater.

Half of the women followed conventional prenatal nutritional guidelines, which is essentially “eat to appetite” (control group).

The other half were placed on a well balanced, nutritionally monitored program, which included a daily food diary (study group).

The average weight gain in the control group was 31 pounds, compared to 11 pounds in the study group. Twenty-three extremely obese patients lost weight during their pregnancy.

The findings showed that there were no fetal deaths and no growth-restricted infants in the study group. Also, there were fewer babies weighing more than 10 pounds in the study group than in the control group.

Birth weight over 10 pounds poses significant hazards to both infants and mothers.

“Women who are obese when beginning a pregnancy are, by definition, unhealthy,” said Dr Yvonne S. Thornton, MPH, a clinical professor of obstetrics and gynecology and board-certified specialist in maternal-fetal medicine at New York Medical College.

“To say that they should gain even more weight is counter-intuitive, and our study bears that out. We need to focus on making these women healthier by getting them to eat a well-balanced diet.

“Gaining weight during pregnancy contributes to obesity, and it makes it that much harder for overweight women to return to their normal weight after pregnancy,” Thornton added. (ANI)

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