Usually, when you have a lot of belly fat, people can think that you are pregnant even if you are not.
Bigger questions can arise when you become pregnant, and you already have existing belly fat.
You might wonder where the existing belly fat will go, whether your pregnancy will be noticeable, or if there are any issues you should be concerned about regarding your weight.
These are common questions when you have belly fat and become pregnant. And you are not alone; several women have preexisting belly fat before pregnancy.
According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, pre-pregnancy obesity rates keep increasing due to factors like race, age, and socioeconomic status.
So, what happens to exist belly fat when pregnant? In this article, I will answer this question and advise what you can do about belly fat to have a healthy pregnancy.
What Happens To Existing Belly Fat When Pregnant?
When your belly is fat, and you get pregnant, that fat is usually spread out evenly around the area where your baby is growing.
A little belly fat is not something to worry about. However, if you are overweight and carry a lot of fat around your belly, you should seek guidance from your doctor.
This is because when pregnant, your weight will continue to increase since you have a baby growing inside of you.
Too much preexisting belly fat before pregnancy can negatively affect your health as it can lead to other diseases like hypertension, gestational diabetes, preeclampsia, and infant death in worst-case scenarios.
To avoid such adverse health outcomes, it is crucial to watch your weight. Most pregnant women experience cravings, and this is normal. However, you must be conscious about eating foods that will further increase the fats around your stomach.
What to do when you have existing belly fat when pregnant?
To have a healthy pregnancy when you have preexisting belly fat, consider doing the following;
1) Consult with your doctor
Work closely with your doctor so that they can advise on the best ways to carry a healthy pregnancy when you have lots of belly fat.
They will measure your BMI and check if you have any underlying health issues like gestational diabetes and advise you accordingly.
2) Embrace healthy eating habits
Just because you are pregnant does not mean that you “eat for two” or give in to your cravings. Overeating food can increase your belly fat.
Seek recommendations from your nutritionist on the type of foods and the number of calories you should consume every day.
3) Let go of stress
Being pregnant and overweight can make you feel stressed. However, you need to avoid or learn how to cope with stress.
High-stress levels are associated with fat gain around the abdomen.
4) Stay active
If your doctor allows you to be physically active, you can do simple exercises like walking. Being active is not only refreshing but also prevents gaining excess weight.
How to reduce belly fat during and after pregnancy
One of the best ways to reduce belly fat during and after pregnancy is to exercise regularly.
- A moderate amount of exercise will help to tone the abdominal muscles and burn calories, which can help to reduce belly fat.
- Additionally, it is important to eat a healthy diet that includes plenty of lean protein, fresh fruits and vegetables, and whole grains.
- Avoiding processed foods, sugary drinks, and excessive amounts of saturated fat can also help to reduce belly fat.
- Finally, getting enough sleep is essential for overall health and can help to reduce stress levels, which can contribute to weight gain.
By following these simple steps, it is possible to reduce belly fat during and after pregnancy.
Importance of exercise and healthy diet during and after pregnancy
Pregnancy is a time of great physical and emotional change for a woman. During this time, it is important to maintain a healthy lifestyle.
Exercise and a nutritious diet can help to reduce the risk of complications during pregnancy, and they can also help to promote a speedy recovery after birth.
Regular exercise helps to improve circulation and increase muscle strength. This can reduce the likelihood of developing varicose veins, hemorrhoids, and constipation.
A healthy diet, on the other hand, helps to ensure that the mother and baby are getting the nutrients they need. It can also help to control weight gain and blood sugar levels.
By making smart lifestyle choices during pregnancy, women can give their babies a strong start in life.
There you have it. Existing belly fat when pregnant is distributed evenly around the area where your baby is growing.
If you are pregnant and have belly fat, work closely with your doctor. After giving birth, you can work towards getting a slimmer belly.