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Why do women gain weight post pregnancy?

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There’s a bizarre fascination associated with how much weight should women put on during pregnancy and how quickly should they shed weight after delivery. While celebrities may make it look easy, remember they have entourages of help. So put the comparisons aside. Experts advise that all you need to do is eat healthy, exercise and sleep whenever you can.

Role of pregnancy Hormone HCG in weight gain

When a woman gets pregnant and the placenta starts to develop, changes take place internally in order to protect and help develop the new life. The placenta produces a hormone called HCG which helps in protecting the development of the baby. Entering directly into the blood stream, it automatically takes control of body functions like metabolism, digestion of food, energy and nutrition distribution.

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HCG supplies energy to pregnant lady and the baby

The hypothalamus in the brain is what controls our digestive system but when a woman is pregnant, she can eat a lot without necessarily gaining weight. However, during pregnancy, the HCG overrides the hypothalamus functions and redirects all the energy and the fat stored in the body, first to the baby and then to the mother. So, if you hadn’t had enough to eat during the day, the HCG will command the hypothalamus to break into its reserves of energy and nutrition, essential for the baby to grow.

WHEN DOES THE WEIGHT GAIN START?

While it’s perfectly normal to gain a little weight during pregnancy, it is advised in some cases too, losing weight after the baby is born can become stressful and difficult. There are quite a few medical explanations which can be found for weight gain after pregnancy. These are:

  1. Stress: Caring for a newborn can become stressful. The stress that comes from the added responsibility triggers a chemical reaction in the body. This releases certain hormones including cortisol which increases appetite, causing the body to store more fat around the midsection, adding more layers to what is known as the mom pouch.
  1. Depression: Hormonal changes in the body can lead to depression post pregnancy. Postpartum depression can range anywhere from little cases to psychosis. Depression leads to emotional eating which causes weight gain.
  1. Thyroid: Approximately 5-7% of women experience thyroid problems after pregnancy. Also known as postpartum thyroiditis, this condition causes unstable levels of hormone production. An underactive thyroid leads to weight gain and may require treatment after pregnancy if the problem persists.

It is not difficult to lose weight after pregnancy, but these are some of the issues that should be addressed if you are not succeeding with your weight loss attempts.

Also, Read: Why Diet Colas Are Worse Than Regular Colas

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