THE START­ING POINT

Your Pregnancy - - Month By Month -

Many women will start their preg­nancy at a “nor­mal” weight – that is to say with a body mass in­dex (BMI) of be­tween 20 and 25. “The BMI is an easy tool to as­sess a pa­tient’s weight in re­la­tion to length. This is the most use­ful marker to dis­tin­guish be­tween nor­mal, over­weight and obese pa­tients,” says Dr Ros­souw. Google “BMI cal­cu­la­tor” and you can work it out for your­self (or see page 85 to work out your BMI).

If your BMI is less than 20, you’re clas­si­fied un­der­weight. “Un­der­weight pa­tients are firstly ex­am­ined to rule out chronic ill­ness. There­after they are re­ferred to a di­eti­cian. Rec­om­mended weight gain in this group is still around 12.5kg,” ex­plains Dr Ros­souw.

How­ever, women who are over­weight (BMI 25 to 30) and obese (a BMI of above 30) are ad­vised to em­brace healthy liv­ing. “Weight gain should be min­imised. Weight gain of around 10kg is ac­cepted,” says Dr Ros­souw. For women who are con­sid­ered mor­bidly obese (BMI above 35) or su­per obese (BMI above 50), they should aim to not gain any weight in preg­nancy and keep their weight con­stant or even lose

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