Pregnancy news, 10/05/2019
Although previous studies have shown that exercise by obese women during pregnancy benefits their children, this study has demonstrated for the first time that the same is true when non-obese women are active during pregnancy.
Jun Seok Son, who carried out the study, said: ‘Based on our findings, we recommend that women
- whether or not they are obese or have diabetes - exercise regularly during pregnancy because it benefits their children’s metabolic health.
The research examined the offspring of mice that performed an hour of moderate intensity exercise every morning during pregnancy. Offspring born to mice that didn't exercise were used as a control group.
125 mice showed increased levels of proteins associated with brown adipose tissue compared to the control group. This type of tissue converts fat and sugar into heat. The researchers also observed higher body temperatures in the exercise group, indicating that their brown adipose tissue was more efficient - or had a higher thermogenic function - which has been shown to prevent obesity and metabolic problems.
After weaning, the offspring followed a high-fat diet for 8
weeks. The mice in the exercise group not only gained less weight on the high-fat diet but also showed fewer symptoms of metabolic diseases such as diabetes and fatty liver disease.
Son adds: ‘Our data suggests that the lack of exercise in healthy women during pregnancy can predispose their children to obesity partially through impairing thermogenic function.’
Can I exercise during pregnancy?
Exercising during your pregnancy is safe and healthy. There are a small number of exercises or activities to avoid during pregnancy, but you can do most types of exercise including running, Pilates, weights, yoga and swimming. Staying active during pregnancy has many benefits, including helping you sleep better and reducing your anxiety levels.
Not in itself. In fact, women with uncomplicated pregnancies who exercise have been shown to have a reduced risk of premature birth.
No. Exercise has not been shown to cause miscarriage. If your pregnancy is uncomplicated, it is safer to exercise than not.
Most types of exercise are fine even if you are overweight. Being active during your pregnancy is safe and healthy for you and your baby.
It should be fine to continue with your usual yoga class during pregnancy, as long as you tell your yoga teacher and they are qualified to instruct pregnant women.
Yes. Yoga is a great exercise to do during pregnancy as it doesn’t put too much strain on your joints. It has also been shown to reduce anxiety and to help women stay calm in pregnancy and labour.
As you’re used to running, it’s fine to carry on during your pregnancy as long as you feel comfortable.