Obesity in pregnancy

December 20, 2018

Before getting pregnant it is important to improve your health to maximise your chances of getting pregnant and having a healthy pregnancy. Both mother’s and father’s diet and weight have an impact on fertility and the health of the child. To read more on this check out our blog post on obesity as a preconception risk factor and impacts- http://p3-study-ucl.co.uk/obesity-a-significant-preconception-risk-factor/

Rates of obesity are increasing among women of reproductive age (15-49 years old). According to Public Health England1, in 2013 19% of women of reproductive age in England were obese and 5.3% of these obese women will become pregnant every year. That means that 110 000 obese women were estimated to become pregnant in 2013. The amount of obesity has only increased in the UK population; in 2013 24% of women were obese2 and in 2016 27% of women were obese3. The number of obese women becoming pregnant is therefore increasing. This can cause serious health issues and complications to mother and baby. Preconception health is therefore extremely important.

Improving your health can take time, and using contraception during this time is useful because it allows you to reach optimum health before trying to get pregnant. To find the contraception method best suited to you- check out the contraception section of the useful links page – http://p3-study-ucl.co.uk/useful-links/

For more information about planning a pregnancy:


For more information about the different types of contraception available and where to find them:


To find the right clinic for you, near you:



  1. Public Health England. ‘Health Matters: Reproductive Health and Pregnancy Planning’. GOV.UK. Accessed 3 September 2018. https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/health-matters-reproductive-health-and-pregnancy-planning/health-matters-reproductive-health-and-pregnancy-planning.
  2. ‘Health Survey for England – 2013’. NHS Digital, December 2014. https://digital.nhs.uk/data-and-information/publications/statistical/health-survey-for-england/health-survey-for-england-2013.
  3. ‘Health Survey for England, 2016’. NHS Digital, December 2017. https://digital.nhs.uk/data-and-information/publications/statistical/health-survey-for-england/health-survey-for-england-2016.