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Pregorexia : Is it a selfish obsession or a cultural problem with modern women?

June 22, 2009 – 3:07 pm

Pregnancy has always been a time when a woman can put on 30 -35 pounds and still feel good and proud of herself, after all she is bringing a new life into the world.  But now it is not like this for every woman.  A new study shows that 20% of all pregnant women in the Western world do not gain enough weight during pregnancy.

These women don’t eat enough during pregnancy or induce vomiting, overexercise, take laxatives and diuretics. They do these dangerous things  for the sake of having a slim figure during and immediately after pregnancy.

Many of these women get inspired by the super-slim celebrities whose pregnant images we often see on TV and magazine covers.  These celebrities manage to go through their whole pregnancy without putting on much weight and continue to look slim. They keep their belly bump small so they become skinny again immediately after their baby is born.  This unnatural “skinny” image becomes a role model of many other “non-celebrity” women to follow.

So, how much weight should a woman gain during a normal pregnancy? The normal range to gain during pregnancy is 25-35 pounds but the amount of weight to gain is different during 1st, 2nd and the 3rd semester.  In the 1st trimester it is normal to put on 5 pounds. During 2nd and 3rd trimester it is normal to put on 1-2 pounds per week.  So all up it should be about 30 pounds by the end of the pregnancy.

When a woman tries to be skinny during pregnancy she is starving the foetus.  Starving the foetus is a high risk action and can result in foetal mortality plus a high risk of getting conditions such as:
–  Spine bifida
– cerebral palsy
– increased incidents of asthma
– increased incidents of allergy
– ear infections
– low birth weight
–  prematurity
–  metabolic abnormalities
– growth retardation
–  birth defects
The  list of serious problems that a baby can get is much longer that this.

Don’t you think that pregorexia is the most selfish thing you can ever do?  Ask yourself what is this for?  – It is all for the sake of attaining this glamorous unnatural look you see on celebrities like Nicole Kidman, Nicole Ritchie who never even had a normal baby bump when they were pregnant, not to even mention their general low body weight.

Also, the big challenge for anorexic women (for those who had anorexia before pregnancy) is that they are expected to gain even more weight during pregnancy then non-anorexic women do – to support the baby.  How much more do you need to gain if you are anorexic?  You should check this with your doctor because weight gain can be an individual thing and depends on your initial body weight and body mass index to start with.

As a general guideline, pregnant women are supposed to put on about 30 pounds during pregnancy.  This means that you should consume an extra 50 calories in the first trimester of pregnancy, an extra 300 calories in the second trimester and extra 400-500 calories in the third trimester.

Now, how do you know if you are getting pregorexia?
If you think too much about being skinny during pregnancy, think about what clothes to wear so you look like you are not pregnant, about how to fool people in to thinking that you are not pregnant.  If you constantly think about food and eating or non-eating – these are all signs that you may have pregorexia.

If this is the case go to your doctor immediately and fix the problem as soon as possible. Otherwise your baby could be in big danger of dying in the womb. You will regret it your whole life, and even if the baby is born do you want it to suffer all its life from birth defects: just because you wanted to be thin to look good for the sake of vanity?

Anorexia and pregnancy are totally incompatible and against nature.

More information on this and other ED news.

eating disorders help go to http://www.womenhealthsite.com/eating_disorders.htm