Overweight Pregnant Women May Be Putting Their Infants At Risk

Interested in home birth, hospital birth or private midwifery care? Questions or comments? Email Melissa Maimann or call 0400 418 448. Link

In recent years, there has been a large increase in the prevalence of overweight and obese women of childbearing age, with approximately 51% of non-pregnant women ages 20 to 39 being classified as overweight or obese.

... obesity in pregnant women is associated with pregnancy complications, birth defects, as well as a greater risk of childhood and adult obesity in infants born to obese mothers.

... obese women are more likely to have an infant with a neural tube defect, heart defects, or multiple anomalies than women with a normal BMI.

Obese pregnant women also put themselves at a higher risk of pregnancy complications, including gestational diabetes, hypertension, preeclampsia, induction of labor, cesarean delivery, and postpartum hemorrhage, compared with women with normal pregnancy body mass indexes.

... obesity among pregnant mothers is linked to childhood obesity in their infants. Obesity during pregnancy more than doubles the risk of obesity in children at two to four years of age ...

The article emphasizes the need for women to consult with their healthcare providers about what their ideal pre-conception weight should be ...

Melissa Maimann, Essential Birth Consulting 0400 418 448