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Exploring Relationship Between Weight, Fertility And Pregnancy

Your ability to become pregnant may be hampered by excess weight. For instance, PCOS, also known as polycystic ovarian syndrome, is one of the most typical causes of infertility in women and has been linked to obesity

Your ability to become pregnant may be impacted by your weight, whether it is too high or too low. Problems during pregnancy might also arise from being overweight or underweight. You can increase your chances of becoming pregnant and having a healthy pregnancy and infant by losing weight.

There is no set ideal weight for conception. The optimal weight for conception varies according to height. A figure based on your height and weight is known as your body mass index (BMI). The BMI range for healthy adults is 18.5 to 24.9. Adults with a BMI of 25 to 29 are termed overweight, whereas adults with a BMI of 30 or higher are considered obese. Using our BMI calculator, you can determine your BMI.

What impact does being overweight or obese have on my ability to conceive?

Your ability to become pregnant may be hampered by excess weight. For instance, PCOS, also known as polycystic ovarian syndrome, is one of the most typical causes of infertility in women and has been linked to obesity. Obesity and overweight impact fertility in:

Preventing ovulation: The feminine hormone estrogen is created in your ovaries. Estrogen is also produced by fat cells. Your fat cells expand and release more estrogen when you put on weight. Your body may respond as though you are taking hormonal birth control with estrogen (such as the pill, shot, or vaginal ring) or are already pregnant if you have too much natural estrogen in your system. You might not be able to ovulate or experience monthly periods as a result.

Preventing fertility treatments from working: With some reproductive treatments, such as in vitro fertilization, obesity may reduce your chances of becoming pregnant (IVF).

The general rules for women are as follows:

  • Pregnancy underweight (measured as a BMI ≤ 18.5): from 28 to 40 pounds

  • Pregnancy-safe weight range (defined as a BMI between 18.5 and 24.9): around 25 to 35 pounds

  • Pregnancy-related obesity (measured as a BMI of 25 to 29.9): around 15 to 25 pounds

  • Obese before becoming pregnant (defined as having a BMI of 30 or higher): around 11 to 20 pounds

Male infertility and obesity:

Having a severe weight problem or being obese can also affect a man's fertility. This is most likely brought on by a number of circumstances, such as:

  • Issues with hormones

  • Erection issues

  • And other obesity-related illnesses.

Men who are overweight or obese can considerably boost their total sperm count and sperm quality by losing weight. The likelihood of conception can be increased by losing weight at least three months before trying to conceive. This is so that healthy sperm can form, which takes about three months, by staying within a healthy weight range.

Tips for a healthier weight before pregnancy:

  • Consume foods from the five food groups—vegetables and legumes, fruits, wholegrain bread and cereals, milk, yogurt, cheese, and substitutes—as well as lean meat, poultry, fish, eggs, seeds, and nuts—to maintain a healthy, balanced diet.

  • Limit your consumption of discretionary foods, such as fast food, candy, fast food, chips, biscuits, fatty meats, pastries, and cakes.

  • Limit unhealthy snacks and eat regular meals.

  • Replace alcohol and sugary beverages with water.

  • Vegetables should make up half of your lunch and supper plates.

  • To assist in reducing your portion sizes, use a smaller plate.

  • Get up and move every day. Include regular physical activity in your schedule by walking to the store, using the stairs, or going for a walk with a friend.

  • By regularly standing up while using a computer or mobile device, and substituting other activities for screen time, you can spend less time sitting down.

  • Set a sensible weight target. You may feel more driven and engaged as a result. An excellent goal is to lose between half and one kilogramme of weight per week until you reach your target weight.

  • Together with your partner, start a healthy food and exercise regimen to improve your chances of becoming pregnant and giving birth to a healthy child.

Underweight and fertility:

By generating hormonal imbalances that impact ovulation and the likelihood of becoming pregnant, being underweight (BMI under 18.5) might lower a woman's fertility. Women who are underweight are more likely to take longer to conceive than those in the appropriate weight range.

Underweight and pregnancy:

Not only can being underweight affect your ability to conceive, but it can also affect the course of the pregnancy.

Being underweight before getting pregnant might affect how the placenta, which supplies nourishment to the baby, grows. Smaller kids are often born to underweight mothers, and this trend begins before conception. A crucial organ in the growth and development of the unborn child is the placenta, which develops during the first trimester of pregnancy.

Preparing for pregnancy:

Starting a healthy eating and fitness regimen now will increase your chances of becoming pregnant and giving birth to a healthy child if you are hoping to get pregnant. You can move closer to achieving a healthier weight by improving your nutrition and increasing your daily physical activity. This is crucial when utilizing IVF and other reproductive assistive technologies (ART).

According to studies, obesity lowers the likelihood of pregnancy and live births in women receiving ART while raising the likelihood of miscarriage. However, reducing body weight through dietary, lifestyle, and other modifications considerably enhances these results.


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