New Research Finds A Connection

As if you didn’t already have enough to worry about if you’re carrying around a little extra weight, researchers have liked maternal obesity with having a large baby.

Pregnant woman eating fruit salad

It used to be said that no matter how much -- or how little -- you gained during pregnancy, it really didn’t affect the size of your baby. However, Canadian researchers have discovered that moms who are overweight before they get pregnant, and those who gain more weight during pregnancy, have a greater risk of having a large infant.

Does mom’s glucose levels play a part?

The researchers also studied whether slightly elevated glucose levels were a predictor of large babies, but found that there really was no correlation once the mama’s weight was taken to account.

The findings may be important -- recently, the American Diabetes Association lowered the threshold for determining which moms may have (or be developing) gestational diabetes based on glucose levels. If it’s really weight that is the trigger for large babies, and not GD, then they may be targeting the wrong mothers.

How large is too large?

A baby who weighs 9 pounds or more is considered on the large side, and while most of these babies enter the world no worse for wear (for the baby or its mom), a large baby can present difficulty during childbirth. Estimating fetal size prior to delivery is difficult, however, and often leads to unnecessary early inductions or scheduled surgical births.

CoconutThe issue of weight

Weight is a touchy subject. Some of us gain weight at the drop of a hat, while others struggle to put on pounds during a pregnancy. Avoiding certain cravings is a good start, but is it possible to put the idea of ice cream out of your head when you’re really pregnant and really wanting it?

Eat treats, but eat them as an exception, not the rule. Try to substitute healthy foods for indulgent ones -- try a bowl of fresh strawberries with a little sugar on them instead of a strawberry malt, for instance. Fruit of any sort makes an excellent snack and craving reliever.

Also … and it may sound totally bizarre -- but try coconut oil. A spoonful of unrefined virgin coconut oil can help eliminate cravings, can be a mood booster and can supply you with energy. And everyone can use more of that!

More on healthy eating

5 Tips for healthy pregnancy eating
10 Foods every pregnant woman should eat
Pregnancy food rules: What to eat, what to avoid

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