There is hardly any need to elaborate on how excess body weight can pave way for myriads of health problems. However, majority of people associate obesity with the risk of becoming diabetic, getting cardiac complications and strokes, and developing high blood pressure. This is also the case with the health aware lot. Have you ever thought about excess body weight posing a blockage to your chances of conceiving! The reality is body weight is directly linked with your fertility prospects. This is applicable for both genders. But women need to be more careful about body weight when pregnancy is a priority.
Is it just about BMI or more?
Typically, most health aware women think that maintaining the ideal BMI will boost their chances of conceiving. While this is not theoretically wrong, BMI is not the only thing that matters in pregnancy. There are plenty of instances of women who are either little underweight or overweight getting pregnant without much complications. However, women with BMI below 19 or upwards of 24 may face more hardships in conceiving.
The health experts say BMI does not reveal the entire story as far as body weight and fertility prospects are concerned. Sometimes, women falling within normal BMI range face hassles in getting pregnant. There might be other factors responsible for the problem as well. Those women who are into weightlifting have heavier muscles and that elevates the BMI scale. Some women have slim and athletic body but lack fat. In some instances, women with apparently healthy body weight suffer from lack of estrogen production. This can hamper the menstrual cycles and lower scope of fertility.
How excess body weight impacts fertility?
To understand how obesity can impact your fertility chances, you need to learn a bit about estrogen hormone. Basically, estrogen is generated in the ovaries. However, some amount of estrogen is also generated by the body’s fat cells. So, women with healthy weight produce generous amounts of estrogen without hardship.
So, how does obesity impact estrogen generation and functioning? Well, in obese women, the additional fat cells will create excess estrogen. When your body generates too much estrogen, it poses hurdles for ovulation. Nearly 40 percent of overweight women cope with irregular menstrual cycles and that brings down their prospects for pregnancy. Severely obese women fare worse in this regard.
Obesity not only reduces your chances of natural conception but it also hinders scope for fertility treatments. The risks continue even after pregnancy! Even if an obese woman conceives, naturally or through procedures, she faces a greater risk of miscarriage. The risk of birth defects in such an infant can’t be ruled out too. Obesity may also lead to hormonal conditions impacting fertility adversely such as PCOS.
What are the prospects of underweight women?
While obesity impacts fertility negatively, women who have lower than average BMI have their share of problems too. Women with BMI below 18 may sometimes get irregular periods. This eventually reduces their pregnancy prospects. To obtain ovulation and regular menstrual cycles, your body needs a certain amount of fat. Being underweight not only reduces chances of pregnancy but it may also lead to premature childbirth.
How to deal with weight anomaly issues for fertility
You have to understand pregnancy is a condition that gets affected by a lot of physiological and mental factors. Body weight is one of these factors. Almost 12% infertility cases are caused by weight anomaly issues. If your BMI is outside the range 19-24, you need specific measures to achieve ideal body weight for pregnancy. If your BMI falls outside the desired range, it is imperative to adopt certain changes in your diet, lifestyle and schedules. The synchronizing factor here is amount of body fat as it is linked with estrogen generation. Having it in excess or sparse amount will lead to pregnancy hassles.
What the obese women can do to overcome fertility woes
If you are overweight or have BMI that falls outside the normal range, the first thing you can try to do is shed those extra pounds. Now, the procedure may not be the same for every obese woman who wants to conceive.
- Dietary changes- You can make necessary changes to the diet, to begin with. Discard unhealthy fat laden foods from your meals and switch to healthier, low calorie alternatives.
- Working out- It is also very important that you burn more calories every day. There is no alternative to working out but the options are aplenty. From cycling to jogging and hitting the gym, try what suits your body the best. If you have fat at specific body parts and losing that is necessary, obtain the advice of skilled trainers and weight loss experts.
- Expert advice on food- Sometimes, zeroing in on a diet to lose weight may not be that simple. Some obese women find it hard to shed excess flab even after making changes to their diets a number of times. This can be owing to genetic structure or intolerance to certain type of foods. The tips of a diet expert may be of help in such cases.
- Lifestyle changes- Sometimes, addictions like alcohol and smoking may make it harder to shed excess weight. So, obese women with pregnancy on the agenda must get rid of such habits.
What the underweight women must do to boost fertility prospects
Underweight women who want to conceive need to gain weight in a planned manner. They may need expert guidance for healthy weight gain.
- Dietary changes- While the goal for underweight women is gaining weight, they should not go binge eating! Eating plenty of fried and processed foods may not be of help. You have to eat foods with healthy fats. Naturally, the guidance of a diet expert will be of use in this case.
- Working out with caution- Underweight women need to gain weight but most of it should be fat and not body muscles. So, swimming or light cardio workouts will be good. Hardcore weight training is not recommended for such women. They should not burn more calories than what they consume per day, ideally.
- Enough sleep and rest- It is necessary for the underweight women to obtain enough sleep and rest to overcome pregnancy hurdles. Unless the fat cells get stored in the body, they can’t produce required amount of estrogen.
Anything else you should know
Obtaining the extra required body fat or discarding existing fat is necessary for women who want to conceive minus hassles. However, the root causes of obesity and being underweight can be varied. It can be related to genetics, an underlying condition or ailment. Sometimes, you may find it hard to lose weight owing to mental stress and depression. Studies have indicated, getting rid of weight issues caused by an underlying disorder may improve pregnancy scope in 70 percent women.
Getting medical and dietary help to gain or lose fat is a prerequisite for fertility boost. However, you can also walk an extra mile to enhance your pregnancy prospects. Whether you are underweight or obese and want to beat fertility woes, utilize the online platforms. Find social media groups and communities where you can find more on these issues and interact with like minded people. This will help you stay motivated and achieve the target with relative ease.