Basically, the increase in cholesterol during pregnancy will not be a problem for the mother and the fetus, but if it is exacerbated by a high level before conception, it can cause hypertension and other risks during pregnancy and fetal growth. Therefore, it is important for pregnant women to know how much cholesterol increases during pregnancy in order to control their health.
The increase in cholesterol during pregnancy has not been determined with certainty but in the guidelines for normal levels it is still using a cholesterol level of less than 200 mg / dL so it is recommended that pregnant women be at least below this cholesterol level. Even so, the increase should not be too extreme, especially so that it is categorized as high and risky above the normal rate.
Cholesterol can help your pregnancy, including in making several hormones needed during pregnancy. Cholesterol is a yellow, waxy fat produced by the liver and does not dissolve in the blood. Although sometimes it is feared that cholesterol will interfere with your health, cholesterol has important functions in the human body including maintaining cell walls, making vitamin D, and making bile acids.
In pregnant women, LDL or the type of bad cholesterol that is usually worried about by many people now has an important role in shaping and supporting the pregnancy process. Even if pregnant women are deficient in LDL it often results in congenital abnormalities. So that in the second trimester of pregnancy, LDL levels tend to increase and at the age of 3 months and above it will form completely and produce the hormone progesterone.
High cholesterol levels during pregnancy are needed to make steroid hormones, such as estrogen and progesterone, which are essential for carrying a long term pregnancy. Your growing baby uses cholesterol at high levels for a healthy brain and limb development.
Cholesterol levels naturally rise during the second trimester, peak during the third and usually return to normal about four weeks after delivery. Scott says most cardiologists recommend that bad LDL levels be less than 100 mg / dL and good HDL cholesterol should be greater than 60 mg / dL. When a woman becomes pregnant, her cholesterol levels increase by 25 to 50 percent, and fortunately, HDL levels seem to increase even more.
However, high cholesterol during pregnancy can cause hypertension due to pregnancy, which can threaten the life of the mother and child. Low cholesterol can lead to preterm labor and low birth weight. Studies have also shown that high cholesterol has had a detrimental effect on the offspring of the mother, both in the womb and later in life. For example, according to the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada, children whose mothers had high cholesterol before becoming pregnant are five times as likely to have high cholesterol as adults.
Under normal conditions, doctors may prescribe statins to lower cholesterol levels but research has shown that cholesterol-reducing drugs are linked to abnormalities in the physiological development of babies.
Conversely, the best way to maintain healthy cholesterol levels during pregnancy is to eat a balanced diet with fruits, vegetables and fiber, avoid saturated fats and exercise at levels approved by your doctor. Also keep in mind that your body only needs about 300 additional calories per day to support you and your baby.