IVF and overweight

25.06.2021
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IVF and overweight
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It has long been known that overweight can be the cause of many health problems. And the reproductive system of a woman is not an exception, because there are many studies that show that being overweight is often the reason for unsuccessful attempts at fertilization and pregnancy in general. After all these, extra pounds is not just adipose tissue that has accumulated, it is also a hormonal imbalance caused by a violation of the ratio of hormones in the blood. It can lead to disturbances in menstrual function, reduce the quality of eggs, and pathological development of the endometrium. Therefore, in medicine, there is a constant discussion of the topic of maintaining a woman’s normal weight for a successful pregnancy.

Overweight women who planning to take advantage of the in vitro fertilization program can be a rather difficult test for their body, both physically bearing a child and withstanding a “hormonal boom” during ovulation stimulation and during gestation.
To find out if you are overweight, you need to calculate your body mass index (BMI).

What is Body Mass Index?

Body mass index (BMI) is a numerical indicator that allows you to analyze the correspondence of the mass (m) of a person’s body to his height (h). Thus, it is possible to assess whether the body weight is overweight, within normal limits, or underweight.

A normal BMI is considered to be between 18.5 and 24.9.25 to 29.9 – overweight and over 30 – obesity, which is divided into three degrees.
Today, BMI under 27 is considered favorable for pregnancy, and above chances are significantly reduced.

This is due to the following factors:

  • Decrease in the quality of egg cells that can be used for IVF
  • Disruption of the menstrual cycle, such as loss of ovulation
  • Due to changes in the woman’s metabolism, serious hormonal disorders are possible
  • The presence of concomitant endocrine diseases, such as diabetes mellitus
  • Heart disorders, varicose veins and other chronic diseases can cause miscarriage
  • Polycystic ovary syndrome. It is often accompanied by overtime weight

IVF and overweight

Although being overweight is not a contraindication for IVF, in order to increase your chances and generally endure pregnancy without problems, doctors recommend reducing your weight. This often dramatically increases the chances of successful IVF.

Why is it important to lose extra pounds before IVF:

  • Drugs used to stimulate the ovaries can accumulate in adipose tissue rather than interfering with ovulationThus, the procedure requires the use of large doses and takes longer
  • According to statistics, during ovarian puncture in obese women, doctors receive twice as few eggs as in healthy women
  • The puncture procedure takes longer and becomes more difficult for doctors, because you need to use a higher dose for anesthesia, which can have a bad effect on the body as a whole
  • Due to changes in the endometrium, it can be problematic to attach the embryo to the uterine wall
  • Carrying out a pregnancy becomes a difficult test for the body and therefore often there may be spontaneous miscarriages

But by reducing body weight by at least 8-10%, you can reduce the negative impact of extra pounds.
To do this, you must first determine the cause of the excess weight. Therefore, a woman is sent for examination of the endocrine system, metabolic processes and other chronic diseases that could cause obesity. After determining the cause, the doctor can decide on methods for normalizing weight.

First of all, these are:

  • Nutrition. Adjusting the daily diet, reducing the calorie content of food, eliminating junk food and increasing healthy foods, fresh fruits and vegetables. The doctor prescribes the diet, guided by the test results, based on the characteristics of the woman’s body, as well as the amount of extra pounds. This is a rather difficult process, because you need to lose weight and not harm your health in general.
  • Physical activity program. Properly prescribed physical activity will help you lose weight. It is prescribed individually, because very often, with excess weight, a woman has concomitant diseases. The program can consist of a minimum, for example, walks in the fresh air for 45 minutes a day, or include physical exercises, and sometimes regular workouts in the fitness room. The main thing is to combine regular and proper loads with full nutrition
  • Eliminate stress factors. It has long been known that quite often, people during stressful situations can gain weight. Therefore, you need to lead a measured and calm life. See a doctor if necessary
  • Medication support. Medicines can be prescribed exclusively by a doctor and of extreme necessity, and you can’t even think about taking drugs on your own. After all, this can greatly harm the body. This applies to all types of drugs, from conventional dietary supplements to various kinds of stimulants and fat burners.

Remember that losing weight is difficult, but possible. Regular, dosed physical activity, correct diet and strict adherence to the instructions of your doctor will help you lose excess body weight, without harming the reproductive system and your health in general.

Weight gain during IVF and pregnancy

Sometimes there are cases of weight gain during the in vitro fertilization procedure. This usually happens when the embryo has attached to the wall of the uterus and the gestation period begins. What is considered the norm if a woman gradually gains several pounds. This is due to the increased needs of the body.

To control weight gain, the doctor adjusts the woman’s diet according to her needs, and it is also recommended to stick to regular physical activity, such as walking in the fresh air.
Remember that overweight directly affects the process of conception, the course of pregnancy and the overall health of the woman and the unborn child. Therefore, it is important to maintain your BMI within the normal range to increase your chances of a successful pregnancy.

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