Are you trying to get pregnant? What preparation and effort have you made to achieve pregnancy? One of the things you must prepare before becoming pregnant is your weight. Maybe this hasn't occurred to you before. But, did you know that weight also affects your chance to get pregnant? Weight that is too thin or too fat, may be the reason why you have difficulty getting pregnant until now.
How can less weight affect pregnancy?
Apparently, your body fat affects your fertility. Fat is needed in the production of the hormone estrogen which is then needed for menstruation. If there is too little estrogen in your body, the menstrual cycle and ovulation can be reduced. In addition, very little body fat will also disrupt the flow of hormones from your brain to the pituitary gland. That is, a signal from the pituitary gland to notify the ovary to release the egg (ovulation) will not occur.
If you miss your period, it means that your body will not release the egg during each cycle. If you don't release eggs, even though you have many healthy eggs, these eggs will remain in the ovary. So, you will be more at risk of having irregular menstrual cycles if you have less than normal (underweight) weight. This irregular menstrual cycle will make it difficult for you to get pregnant.
How do you calculate body fat?
You need a minimum body fat of 22% to ovulate and have a normal menstrual cycle. Of course it is difficult to measure what percentage of body fat you have if you want to have a normal menstrual period. The percentage of body fat can be measured by a special instrument that costs a bit expensive.
The easiest way you can do to find out that your body has enough fat for normal menstruation is to measure the Body Mass Index (BMI). If your BMI shows that you have a normal body weight, it means you have enough fat in your body for menstruation.
It is very easy to measure your BMI, you need to know the weight and height you have first. Then divide your weight in kilograms with your height in square meters (kg /m²).
If the result is between the numbers 18.5-25 it means you have a normal weight and if you show results below 18.5 it means you are underweight (thin). A study shows that women with a BMI between 20-25 have a better chance of getting pregnant than women who have a lower BMI.
Who is most at risk for difficulty getting pregnant?
Body fat is important for maintaining your menstrual cycle. This is why individuals who are very thin or have a BMI below 18.5 may find it difficult to get pregnant. Individuals who do a lot of physical activity and have a strict diet can have a very low BMI, so that their menstrual cycle is irregular and then becomes difficult to get pregnant.
This usually happens to professional female athletes who maintain their weight or ballerina. In addition, there are also many women who are very pressing themselves to stay slim by taking a strict diet, and keeping their weight at a normal threshold. Or it can also occur in individuals who suffer from anorexia nervosa who have irregular menstrual cycles, even experience amenorrhea.
Then, what should I do if I weigh less?
If you are underweight and have irregular menstrual cycles or even your menstrual cycle stops, you should consult your doctor so that your problems can be addressed immediately. If you only need to increase your weight a few pounds, you should gradually increase your weight by eating nutritiously balanced foods.
Achieving a normal weight before you become pregnant is also an attempt to get a healthy baby. If you are pregnant with a condition of underweight, you will increase your baby's risk of being born with a low weight or premature baby.
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