So you think you are finally in the phase of life where you are ready to have children of your own? You have been trying to conceive for a long time now but with no success and it is getting irritating for you. We understand the struggle because it is real and it is heartbreaking. During all the heart-shattering pregnancy test results, did you step on a weighing scale? Because there are high chances that the problem lies not within you but with the reading of the scale. Too high or too low, both have their downsides and cause a problem with fertility.
How to Tell If You Are Underweight or Overweight?
So, how do you tell that the number on the weighing scale which category does it put you in? Are you overweight or underweight? Well, one of the most common ways to find this out is to measure your body’s BMI. It is a clear indicator of your exact situation. You can always find help online with the BMI charts to identify your score and where it puts you. A BMI over 25 makes you an overweight and above 30, an obese. For underweight, you need to have a BMI of under 18.5.
Effects on Fertility When You Are Overweight
Being overweight means having a BMI over 25. The fat deposits in the body increase the estrogen levels which can alter the ovulation cycles in women. This is not the end of it. Women who are obese face a lot of difficulty in conceiving and even having a healthy pregnancy. The chances of pre-eclampsia in overweight women are very high which put a great risk to the health of the mother and baby. Apart from this, a lot of fertility related problems are associated with being overweight, PCOs and endocrine disorder being the most common of all. Obesity and overweight make it overly difficult to conceive and can affect the fertility to a large extent.
Effects on Fertility When You Are Underweight
Being underweight means that your body is not getting the nutrition it needs in order to have the strength to conceive. It also tampers with the hormonal levels in blood streams and imbalances the optimal levels that are needed in order to be fertile. The biggest impact of being undernourished is on the ovulation cycle. It can not only fluctuate the ovulation cycle but can also stop it altogether. It was estimated that underweight women may take as long as a year more than women with healthy body weight to conceive. What is even worse is that the chances of them having a miscarriage are high as well.
BMI and Fertility Treatment
The subject of body weight and access to fertility treatment is a hotly debated one. Specifically the issue is related to BMI and your ability to get pregnant. Some women have been told that their BMI is too high for IVF and have been denied treatment on the NHS for fertility issues. Controversially, the NHS regularly turns away couple on the basis of their BMI. This is in the face of an ongoing discussion as to whether BMI is an accurate indicator of health.
Keeping A Healthy Body Weight
Maintaining a healthy body weight is extremely important especially if you want to have a healthy pregnancy and want to reduce the impact of your weight on your fertility. Diet can help this. Regular exercise can help with fertility too. It can also help protect your children from obesity in later life.
This post first appeared in 2017 and has been updated since.