Relationship Between Diabetes and Pregnancy
It has been a fact that many people are experiencing diabetes today. Diabetes may be caused by different factors depending on the type of diabetes a patient has. However, studies have shown that even pregnancy can cause women to have high risk of developing diabetes.
According to this recent study, there is a greater chance for pregnant women who gained weight during their first pregnancy to have higher risk of getting diabetes during their second pregnancy. This is regardless of their weight before their first pregnancy. Most of the time, people would think that only the women who are overweight during their pregnancy have a high risk of diabetes, but this test shows that this is not necessarily the case.
Lead author of the research Samantha Ehlrich indicated that the results of the study done in Kaiser Permanente’s Division of Research are something to be expected. Even people who are not pregnant would lower their risk of developing diabetes as a result. Hence, it is important to know that weight changes during pregnancy may cause a woman to have or prevent the occurrence of gestational diabetes. Studying this condition and its causes is vital, since women need proper weight management to reduce their risk of this and other conditions such as hypertension and larger babies.
Using 10 years of Kaiser Permanente’s records, Ehlrich and the team studied the trend of women who developed gestational diabetes. The trend indicated that more women tended to have gestational diabetes during their second pregnancy than developing it in both pregnancies.
After taking note of these conditions, they saw the weight changes that occurred during their first pregnancy. They noted that the chances of women developing gestational diabetes would depend on the amount of weight they gained in the first pregnancy. For instance, gaining up to 18 pounds during their first pregnancy could increase their gestational diabetes risk during their second pregnancy by up to four times than usual.
This is also the same for women who lost weight during their first pregnancy. Similar to gaining weight, the percentage of lowering their chances of getting gestational diabetes is proportional to how much weight they lost.
The main conclusion of this study is to show that it is better for women to lose weight or achieve their goal weight before their first pregnancy. It is also recommended for women who are overweight or obese before their pregnancy should consider losing weight to prevent the risk of getting this problem.
One additional note is that Ehrlich’s team has cited positive results in using a program that can help pregnant women lose weight. However, they understand that it may be difficult for some women to restore their previous weight although it is possible with the right program and diligence.
Overall, the fact remains that weight is a factor for pregnant women that can increase their risk of having diabetes. The good thing is that studies like this will make people know more about what they need to do to reduce their risk of getting this problem.
“Diabetes Risk in Pregnancy Tied to Weight Change.” http://www.reuters.com/article/2011/06/02/us-diabetes-pregnancy-idUSTRE7514GU20110602
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