Obstetricians Should Recommend Exercise During Pregnancy

Armen Hareyan's picture
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Exercise During Pregnancy

Not enough obstetricians are encouraging their pregnant patients to exercise, Raul Artal, M.D., chair of the department of obstetrics, gynecology and women's health at Saint Louis University School of Medicine, writes in the September issue of a publication for obstetricians and gynecologists.

"With ample evidence to show that regular, moderate exercise in women with healthy pregnancies results in no adverse maternal or fetal effects, obstetricians should make exercise recommendations a top priority," he says.

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"The hesitance of obstetricians to recommend exercise to pregnant women is rooted in old-fashioned notions of pregnancy as a time of confinement."

Dr. Artal says pregnancy is a perfect time for women to begin exercising because they stick with the habits they adopt during pregnancy after their babies are born.

"The promotion of exercise during pregnancy is an important public health issue that could significantly reduce the lifetime risks of obesity, chronic hypertension and diabetes

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