When actress Rebel Wilson announced to fans last November that she had reached her goal weight after making 2020 her “Year of Health,” she clarified that her diet and fitness journey didn’t was “not about weight, but being healthy”. What the Australian comic book actress didn’t reveal until recently is that her transformation was driven by her desire to have children.
Like Hello america reported, the 41-year-old opened up on Instagram Live in late July about her doctor advising her to lose weight to improve her chances of getting pregnant.
“It started when I was going through, looking at fertility issues and the doctor said to me, ‘Well you’d have a lot better chance if you were healthier’,” he said. she shares.
“I was actually a little offended because I thought – even though I was bigger – I thought I was pretty healthy,” said the Perfect star added. “That’s sort of what started, that if I lost excess weight it would give me a better chance to freeze eggs and have better quality eggs.”
While Wilson probably hasn’t conceived yet – in May she posted on Instagram about receiving “bad news” and offered her support for “all women struggling with fertility” – her remarks raise concern. question of how important the weight is to process it.
According to women’s health expert, Dr Sherry Ross, being overweight can disrupt a woman’s ovulation cycle, which in turn “can make it difficult to conceive.” Wilson previously spoke about being diagnosed with Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS), which led her to “[gain] gain weight quickly. ”PCOS can also cause fertility problems because it can prevent women from ovulating or missing their period.
Ross, the author of She-ology and co-founder of URJA Intimates skin care, told Yahoo Life that having a body mass index (BMI) in the range of obesity – 30 or higher – “increases the risk of infertility due to ovulation problems “.
Dr. Brian Levine of the CCRM New York Reproductive Health Clinic supports this, citing the findings of the American Society for Reproductive Medicine (ASRM) that “overweight women in the general population have a higher incidence of menstrual irregularity. and a lower chance of conception within a year. year of stopping contraception compared to women of normal weight.
Having a low BMI comes with its own set of concerns, as Ross and Levine note that it can interfere with regular ovulation as well. Levine cites a 2014 study that found that time to conception quadrupled for women with a BMI less than 19 compared to those with a BMI between 19 and 24; for women with a BMI over 25, this time doubled.
“Overall, weight has an incredible impact on cycle regularity and reproductive outcomes,” he told Yahoo Life.
Of course, women of all shapes and sizes give birth every day, and conceiving is not an impossibility. But Levine says being overweight increases the risk of high blood pressure, dyslipidemia, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, sleep apnea, breathing problems, osteoarthritis and cancer, which makes pregnancy high risk. During pregnancy, there is also an increased risk of complications such as gestational diabetes, high blood pressure and pre-eclampsia, which could lead to a “medically indicated premature birth”.
“In addition, obesity and extreme underweight are both associated with an increased risk of stillbirth,” he adds.
And just as excess weight can lead to pregnancy complications, being underweight or insufficient weight gain during pregnancy can lead to preterm labor and a low birth weight baby, Ross explains.
The healthiest approach, she says, is to follow Wilson’s lead by giving yourself the time to control her weight and lifestyle.
“It’s best to plan at least six to nine months before you get pregnant so that you can be healthier before you carry your most vulnerable passenger,” says Ross. “Women need to start eating a healthy and colorful diet, exercising regularly, and maintaining a healthy BMI long before a planned pregnancy if they want to reduce pregnancy-related complications from obesity and taking excess weight during pregnancy. Working with a knowledgeable doctor and nutritionist who can support you and the baby will ensure a healthy outcome for both of you. “
She recognizes that women can often feel ashamed of their bodies, especially in a medical setting, and suggests that anyone wishing to conceive seek a gynecologist with whom they can have a more encouraging and empowering relationship.
“The good news is that there are a lot of obstetricians who will partner with you in positive and healthy ways,” says Ross. “Feeling comfortable and being able to discuss concerns, fears and insecurities with the health care provider has to be the most important journey in a woman’s life first and foremost. “
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