It is known that women gain weight during pregnancy.
Many moms still have higher body weight after giving birth than before pregnancy, and they blame pregnancy makes them heavy.
However, recent research shows that pregnancy does not cause permanent weight gain. Instead, unhealthy lifestyle habits and age are the real things to blame.
One study recently examines the long-term weight gain of childbearing women compared to expected weight gain for women without kids.
Researchers looked at data for roughly 30,000 women who’d given birth between one and four times.
They found that most women never returned to their pre-pregnancy weight.
But their weight at 1-2 years after giving birth was nearly the same with what they would have if they didn’t have children.
Normally, all the women gained 1.94 pounds a year due to age with and without children.
But once their children became toddlers, the mothers gained a full pound more every year than their childless peers.
The team finds that age and mom’s lifestyle, such as a busy mother denying her own exercise and fitness, or finishing the food on toddler’s plate, are real reasons for expanding waistlines.
This is because moms tend to put the needs of their children first, so that they may not high time to exercise or take care of themselves.
Therefore, lifestyle plays a big role in many mothers’ weight gain.
This challenges the belief that weight gained during pregnancy cause permanent weight gain in moms.
The authors suggest that women should not worry about weight gain during pregnancy, but they do need to maintain healthy lifestyle habits through pregnancy and motherhood.
Gaining a healthy weight during pregnancy is important for both the mom and the baby.
To have a healthy body weight in pregnancy, experts from NIH suggest that women need to check their pre-pregnancy BMI.
If you are underweight (BMI* less than 18.5), you should gain about 28 to 40 pounds.
If you are a normal weight (BMI of 18.5 to 24.9), you should gain about 25 to 35 pounds.
If you are overweight (BMI of 25 to 29.9), you should gain about 15 to 25 pounds.
If you are obese (BMI of 30+), you should gain about 11 to 20 pounds.
Remember that the above advice is for women having only one baby. For women who are pregnant with two babies or more, the weight gain can be different.
In addition, pregnancy weight gain should be steady and slow. For example, in the first 3 months, 1 to 4 pounds total is normal. For 4 months until delivery, 2-4 pounds each month is normal.
You need to focus on healthy eating, but “eating for two” is not true.
Being active is important during pregnancy, so you should exercise regularly.
Many exercises are safe during pregnancy, such as walking, swimming, stationary cycling, and pregnancy-specific exercise classes.
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