Obese women should gain between 11-20 pounds when pregnant, new guidelines urge; the figure is about half what’s recommended for women of normal weight, HealthDay News reports, and reflect concerns about the effect of rising obesity rates on mother and child.
Obesity can increase a baby’s risk of preterm birth, stuck shoulders, broken collarbones, and health problems later in life. It also puts the mother at risk of vaginal tearing, bleeding, and the need for cesarean delivery. Underweight women also put babies at risk and should gain 28-40 pounds during pregnancy. A woman’s weight at conception matters as well, the doctors say.