Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Obese pregnant women should gain less weight than currently recommended, researcher suggests

Date:
January 7, 2010
Source:
Saint Louis University
Summary:
An obstetrician who specializes in obesity disputes current recommendations for weight gain during pregnancy.

Recent recommendations by the Institute of Medicine (IOM) call for women who are overweight or obese to gain more weight than they should, a Saint Louis University obstetrician wrote in a January commentary for Obstetrics & Gynecology.

Related Articles


Joined by several colleagues, Raul Artal, M.D., chair of the department of obstetrics, gynecology and women's health at Saint Louis University, who has conducted extensive research on weight gain during pregnancy, did not endorse the IOM's May 2009 recommendation. The IOM, a non-governmental, independent, nonprofit organization, provides advice that is designed to improve health to national decision makers and the public.

"The recently published IOM recommendations for gestational weight gain are virtually identical to those published in 1990 with one exception: obese women are now recommended to gain 11-20 pounds compared to the previous recommendations of at least 15 pounds," Artal said.

"Recommending a single standard of weight gain for all obese classes is of concern since higher BMI levels are associated with more severe medical conditions and have long-term adverse health implications."

Artal recommended obese women eat a nutrient-rich diet of between 2,000 and 2,500 calories a day, which would cause them to cap their weight gain at 10 pounds, and in some cases, lose weight.

Under a doctor's guidance, he said, obese pregnant women can safely engage in physical activities and modify their diets to successfully limit their weight gain with no harmful effects on the fetus.

When obese women reduce the amount of weight they gain, they also cut their risk of developing complications such as gestational diabetes and preeclampsia. By contrast, obese women who gain too much weight increase their risk of developing these conditions who affect both mother and fetus.

Artal called excessive weight gain during pregnancy a significant contributor to the obesity epidemic.

"Excessive gestational weight gain has been implicated in an intergenerational vicious cycle of obesity as overweight and obese mothers give birth to big daughters who are more likely to become obese themselves and deliver large infants," he said.

Pregnancy is an ideal time for women who are obese to exercise and watch what they eat, Artal said.

These lifestyle changes are safe and carry benefits that last long after they have given birth, Artal added.

"Similar to smoking cessation programs, pregnancy provides a unique and ideal opportunity for behavior modifications given high motivation and enhanced access to medical supervision," he said.

"Limited weight gain in obese pregnant women has the added potential for setting the foundation for a healthier lifestyle over a woman's lifespan."

Artal led the team of obstetricians who drafted the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists' guidelines for exercise during pregnancy. He was joined in writing the commentary by Charles Lockwood, M.D., chair of the department of obstetrics, gynecology and reproductive sciences at Yale University School of Medicine and Haywood Brown, M.D., chair of obstetrics and gynecology at Duke University Medical Center.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Saint Louis University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Saint Louis University. "Obese pregnant women should gain less weight than currently recommended, researcher suggests." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 7 January 2010. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/01/100106093640.htm>.
Saint Louis University. (2010, January 7). Obese pregnant women should gain less weight than currently recommended, researcher suggests. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 25, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/01/100106093640.htm
Saint Louis University. "Obese pregnant women should gain less weight than currently recommended, researcher suggests." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/01/100106093640.htm (accessed October 25, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

IKEA Desk Converts From Standing to Sitting With One Button

IKEA Desk Converts From Standing to Sitting With One Button

Buzz60 (Oct. 24, 2014) IKEA is out with a new convertible desk that can convert from a sitting desk to a standing one with just the push of a button. Jen Markham explains. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
Ebola Protective Suits Being Made in China

Ebola Protective Suits Being Made in China

AFP (Oct. 24, 2014) A factory in China is busy making Ebola protective suits for healthcare workers and others fighting the spread of the virus. Duration: 00:38 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
WHO: Millions of Ebola Vaccine Doses by 2015

WHO: Millions of Ebola Vaccine Doses by 2015

AP (Oct. 24, 2014) The World Health Organization said on Friday that millions of doses of two experimental Ebola vaccines could be ready for use in 2015 and five more experimental vaccines would start being tested in March. (Oct. 24) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Doctor in NYC Quarantined With Ebola

Doctor in NYC Quarantined With Ebola

AP (Oct. 24, 2014) An emergency room doctor who recently returned to the city after treating Ebola patients in West Africa has tested positive for the virus. He's quarantined in a hospital. (Oct. 24) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins