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Obesity is becoming more prevalent with each passing year. Obesity increases the risk of diabetes and heart disease, and it can cause many problems with the back and joints. However, obesity can also have a significant effect on the ability to conceive and have a healthy child. If you are trying to get pregnant now or thinking about doing so in the future, ensuring you’re at a healthy weight will go a long way toward boosting your fertility. The good news is that there are several ways to accomplish this, including getting weight loss surgery in Houston.

What Is a Healthy Weight?

A healthy or ideal weight is critical when it comes to boosting fertility, and the Body Mass Index or BMI is the measurement used to determine this. Based on your height and weight, a healthy BMI is one that falls between 19 and 25. A BMI between 25-30 suggests you are overweight, while a BMI of 30 or more indicates obesity.

Interestingly, it isn’t only the BMI of the female which can affect the ability to conceive; there is also a relationship between obesity and fertility in males. Even as little as a 5% reduction in weight can drastically improve the chances of becoming pregnant.

Weight Loss and PCOS

Although the full story about how obesity affects pregnancy is still being discovered, proof that weight loss benefits fertility has been well-documented in women with PCOS, or polycystic ovarian syndrome. PCOS is the number-one cause of infertility, and it can also lead to several complications, according to Insulite Health.1

Generally speaking, hormonal imbalances cause PCOS, and these imbalances can prevent pregnancy. In addition, many women with PCOS also experience weight gain. However, it’s been found that when women with PCOS begin exercising and consuming a specific diet, many of them begin to ovulate again. Let’s look at some specific ways that polycystic ovarian syndrome can negatively affect the ability to become pregnant and to carry the pregnancy to term.

Anovulation

Anovulation is the inability of the female body to produce an egg from each ovary every month. A study mentioned by News Medical showed that anovulation-related infertility was 30% higher in women with BMIs between 24 and 31.2  PCOS was identified as being the underlying cause of anovulation in overweight and obese women.

Pregnancy Complications

Women with hormonal imbalances who are obese can experience several complications during their pregnancy. Preeclampsia, which is high blood pressure induced by pregnancy, is one danger. Another potential and common complication is insulin resistance during pregnancy, which can cause gestational diabetes. Increased difficulty with vaginal delivery is another complication associated with excess weight that can be corrected with sleeve gastrectomy in Houston.

fat man holding a measuring tape his belly

Miscarriage is more likely for pregnant women who are obese, as hormonal imbalances can negatively affect egg quality. These imbalances can also affect the success of implantation, as well as the ability of a fertilized egg to be received by the womb, which is typically attributed to the insulin resistance during pregnancy. Finally, the hormones responsible for sustaining pregnancy are out of balance in women with obesity and PCOS.

Pregnancy-Related Hormones

Obesity and PCOS in men lead to a decrease in testosterone levels in men, as well as globulin, which binds the sex hormones. Reduced levels of inhibin B and follicle-stimulating hormone are also caused by obesity. All of these can lead to low sperm quality and count.

Importance of Weight Management During Pregnancy

Weight gain during pregnancy is a very common occurrence among pregnant women. In fact, according to BabyCenter, more than half of pregnant women are either overweight or obese.3 In obese women, however, weight management during pregnancy is absolutely critical. Women who are already obese when they become pregnant should only gain between 11 and 20 pounds during their pregnancy. Gaining any more can drastically increase the probability of developing gestational diabetes.

Because of the risks of developing gestational diabetes and other complications as a result of excess weight gain, many women wonder whether they should go on a diet during their pregnancy. This is never recommended, as restricting your nutrient and caloric intake during pregnancy can threaten the health of you and your baby. please follow your doctor’s recommendations.

Strategies for Healthy Weight Before and During Pregnancy

beautiful couple watching ultrasound pictures

Many doctors advise achieving a healthy weight before becoming pregnant. Diet and exercise are two strategies which can have a dramatic impact on pre-pregnancy weight gain. Eating well during your pregnancy not only means choosing nutritious foods but also:

  • Eating more frequently during the day
  • Avoiding caffeine and alcohol
  • Supplementing your diet with prenatal vitamins

Women who are relatively new to exercise should engage in types of beginner-level activities specifically designed for pregnancy. These activities may include low-impact aerobics, swimming, and walking. However, although exercise during pregnancy has many benefits for your mood and body, you will need to ensure that you are careful. In addition to checking with your healthcare provider before starting any kind of exercise, you will also want to ensure you:

  • Consume sufficient calories
  • Not engage in high-contact sports
  • Wear loose and comfortable clothing
  • Always warm up prior to exercising
  • Stay hydrated

You will also want to avoid exercising in high heat and humidity.

Many women with a high BMI find it incredibly difficult or impossible to lose weight before pregnancy with just diet and exercise. Where this is the case, weight loss surgery can be a viable and effective solution.

Definition and Benefits of Weight Loss Surgery

The procedure for sleeve surgery in Houston involves reducing the stomach’s size. The way in which this is done depends on the method of surgery that is chosen. Regardless of the procedure, the result of surgery is that the stomach is smaller and can, therefore, hold less food than before. Weight loss surgery has several benefits, both short and over the long term.

Pain Relief

Women experiencing join and back pain can benefit greatly from surgery. Not only can surgery eliminate pain, but the absence of pain can make exercise easier and far more pleasant. Mobility can also be improved with surgery, which will reduce stress on the joints.

Improved Sleep and Mood

If you’ve been diagnosed with obesity-induced obstructive sleep apnea, this condition may be eliminated with weight loss surgery. This can result in a drastically improved quality of sleep, which can elevate your mood. Many women diagnosed with depression as the result of their obesity saw this condition improve following surgery.

Less Risk of Disease

Surgery for weight loss can reduce the risk of developing coronary heart disease, stroke, and peripheral heart disease. Lowered blood pressure and cholesterol may also result following surgery. As well, several other diseases can be prevented, reversed, or eliminated with surgery. These diseases include metabolic syndrome and gallbladder disease.

Finding a Dedicated Professional

If you wish to conceive but are having difficulty due to your obesity, wish to embark on a healthier path, or both, you need to know that every small step can make a significant difference. However, ensuring that you find the right professional to offer complete care will be absolutely critical. Complete care means that they won’t only perform gastric sleeve surgery in Houston but also offer support before and after your surgery, as well as give you the tools you need to maintain a healthy weight for the rest of your life.

Our team at Bariatric Care Centers treats each of our patients with respect and dignity. We share our knowledge with you so that you can make an informed decision about your weight loss surgery. Discover why our highly trained team is chosen, time and again, by Houston residents who want to achieve their weight loss goals; call (713) 339-1353 today.

Disclaimer: This is only for general information. All patients should consult their doctors prior to following any of the recommendations in any articles, posts, or videos. All patients have individual needs and limitations that only their treating physicians can be aware of.

Sources:

  1. https://pcos.com/pcos-and-infertility/
  2. https://www.news-medical.net/health/Obesity-and-Infertility.aspx
  3. https://www.babycenter.com/0_overweight-and-pregnant-how-to-manage-weight-gain-during-pre_1313887.bc