This study comes as an advice to obese women on the verge of conception, who can take it if they find it justifiable. According to a team from the University of Illinois, obese women may benefit if they lose weight before stepping into pregnancy.
This is because even if they eat healthily while they are pregnant, there are chances of the child being exposed to an unsafe environment inside the womb. This kind of ambience is what the scientists call ‘the obesogenic surrounding’ of the mother. High proportions of cholesterol like triglycerides, non-esterified fatty acids (NEFAs) are generally seen in the bodies of obese pregnant women.
“We can see fat sequestered in the placentas of obese mothers when it should be going to the baby to support its growth. The nutrient supply region in the placenta of an obese mother is half the size of that of a normal-weight mother, even when both are eating the same healthy diet,” said Yuan-Xiang Pan, a U of I professor of nutrition.
The team essentially urged women to first lose weight and then enter pregnancy. Even if overweight women did not gain more weight during pregnancy, they seemed to carry the same environment with them. This led to birth of kids with lower body weight that made them vulnerable to a lot of disorders as they grew.
The investigators found that a gene called DKKI apparently controlled specific parts of fat metabolism via the WNT signaling path. Thus, it regulated the nutrients reaching the placenta. This process is crucial as it would help a physician inform the right time for conception in women. Basically, when the chemical constituents spurred due to obesity subside, the time could be regarded as a safe period for pregnancy.
The report is published in the journal, Biology of Reproduction.