Australia Study: Pregnancy not a long-term cause of weight gain

For pregnant women, weight is a very sensitive problem, they often face a lot of pressure to restore the pre-natal slim body as soon as possible after delivery.

According to the recent study by the University of Canberra, Pregnancy is not a long-term cause of weight gain. The University of Canberra tracked the weight of 8,000 young women over 15 years, comparing the results of those who became mothers with those who did not.

“The common perception in laypeople, but also researchers, is that pregnancy probably has a really significant role in weight gain in women over the long term,” researcher Deborah Davis said.”We divided up those who’d had babies with those who hadn’t had babies, and looked at the weight gain over 15 years.
“Ones who had babies didn’t have a different weight gain to women who didn’t.”

While it is normal to see moderate weight gain during pregnancy, Professor Davis said women only needed to eat a little extra.
“Women should really concentrate not on the volume of food, but really on eating good food — really nutrient rich.”

Over the 15-year period, it was found that most women gained a small amount of weight, but the difference between women who had children and those who did not was insignificant. The study examined other factors influencing weight gain, finding that university education and high levels of exercise were indicators of smaller weight gain.

Professor Davis said while a link between depression and weight gain was found, the study did not conclude whether one factor caused the other.

A link was also established between unemployment and increased weight gain.

“It wasn’t about how much income you had, but if you had no paid job you were more likely to have a bigger weight gain,” she said.

Professor Davis said that she hopes that this research will enable women to have more confidence to have children. She said: “Having a baby is a very healthy thing and may not affect your weight.”