What Is a Healthy BMI to Get Pregnant?
Let’s be honest. Life has limitations. It’s why you feel full after a heavy meal or why not everyone can contort their bodies into the most peculiar shapes. You just make most of what you have by pushing yourself: eating healthily, exercising regularly, and training your mind.
One of the biggest hurdles you can set upon yourself is not taking care of your health. While there are genetic factors to disease and obesity, having a healthy lifestyle can be under your control. Being overweight, for example, can put you at a higher risk for diabetes, heart disease, bone disorders, and even fertility. Believe it or not, there is an ideal BMI for fertility.
How Are Weight and Fertility Related?
While it’s not considered polite dinner conversation, a significant percentage of the population is struggling with infertility. According to data from the World Health Organisation, between 48 million to 186 million individuals and 15% of reproductive age couples globally suffer from the issue. In developing countries, 186 million married women of reproductive age are wishing for a child.
Many factors affect fertility. There’s age, lifestyle, and sometimes it’s sheer bad luck. Being overweight and getting pregnant isn’t always easy. In women, excess weight stimulates the production of leptin, the hormone that helps you feel full. Also, those who are carrying a bit more baggage around the middle typically have a hard time conceiving. Too much abdominal fat causes insulin resistance (yet another hormone) and poorer levels of globulin, a protein responsible for the sex hormones androgen and estrogen.
Any hormonal imbalance can seriously mess up a woman's chances of getting pregnant. So it’s important to maintain a healthy BMI to get pregnant.
According to a study in the International Journal of Obesity and Related Metabolic Disorders, in one year, obese women have only a 66.4% chance of conceiving versus 81.4% for women with a reasonably healthy weight. Women whose body-mass index is above 27 also experience ovulation problems that could affect conception.
Men aren’t exempt from this concern either. According to a Harvard University study, overweight men are 11% more likely to have a low sperm count and 39% more likely to have no sperm when they ejaculate. The numbers are more jarring for obese men: with 42% more likely to have a low sperm count and 81% more likely to produce no sperm.
Moreover, men with weight problems are also susceptible to diabetes and sleep apnea. These two conditions have been linked to erectile dysfunction and low testosterone level.
This isn’t to say that you should be magazine-cover thin. Maintaining a healthy weight is something you owe to yourself to live life to the fullest – and possible to create new life as well.
Managing Your Weight: The First Step
Being in a healthy weight range can boost your chances not just of getting pregnant. Of course, this is just a first step and not a guarantee. However, it goes without saying that living the best, healthy lifestyle is something you should strive for, regardless of the outcome.
Have a plan with your partner
It takes two to make a baby and it’s a journey that you are both in together. Get on the path of wellness together. You can bond with your partner this way: shop for fruits and vegetables, plan and cook menus, exercise. It helps to have empathy and encouragement when trying to maintain an ideal BMI for fertility. This support system will help keep both of you accountable, too!
Consult with a specialist
Several conditions affect both weight and fertility. You might have a preexisting condition such as PCOS or Polycystic Ovary Syndrome. According to Johns Hopkins Medicine, it is a condition in which the ovaries produce more than average amounts of androgen (the male sex hormone), which lead to small cysts in the reproductive system. If you have PCOS, you may require special medication and a specific diet.
Limit your stress
We’re big believers that health and fitness is a holistic system. Only a person who is emotionally, mentally, and psychologically healthy can be truly physically healthy. Stress is a primary driver of poor health. It can cause high blood pressure and heart disease, which not only affect your fertility, it could also hurt the pregnancy.
Stress also kicks your cortisol, epinephrine and norepinephrine into high gear. These are hormones responsible for regulating your body’s reaction to high-pressure situations. Remember what we said about hormonal imbalance?
To limit stress, make sure to identify your cause of stress. You have to address the root cause of your problems. Try to get the proper amount of sleep too since there is a link between a bad sleeping pattern and being overweight. And of course, don’t forget to make time for yourself (especially if you’re the type of person who always puts others first) and practice some self-love.
Join a fitness programme and a supportive community
Having an encouraging support system makes a big difference. When you want to lose weight to improve your chances of conceiving or whether you would just like to lose some kilos so that you can live your best life, then consider being guided by a fitness programme with a supportive community.
BodySlims is a revolutionary 10-week weight loss programme that doesn’t just tell you to lift weights or jog five kilometres every day. Its founder Gerard Moran understands that the key to weight loss is sustainability and that’s not just about your physical ability.
The course comes with motivational talks and seminars, a calorie-controlled personalised diet plan, support emails, daily and nightly encouragement, and more, all of which will ensure a healthy BMI to get pregnant. You might also be interested to know that its diet regimen never excludes whole food groups so you never feel deprived – just balanced! If you think you want a little extra push, you can also opt for worldwide coaching.