Overweight Women May Have a Harder Time Getting Pregnant
Apart from infertility and age, the chance of a woman of getting pregnant is also affected by her weight.
You might hear that people assume the overweight women who have a pear-shaped body, when your waist circumference is smaller than your hip, are more fertile than underweight women because they represent an image of the ' ideal' woman from years ago.
But the overweight women who have an apple-shaped body, when your waist circumference is higher (above 80 cm) than your hip, are considered to have a higher risk of miscarriage.
In fact, overweight women cannot experience ovulation (a mature egg is released from the ovary) efficiently. "Obesity significantly reduces a woman' s fertility. It also causes complication during pregnancy," said Dr Becky Lang from the Association for the Study of Obesity.
In an overweight woman, excessive fat and its distribution in the body can highly affect her fertility, menstrual periods (rare or irregular), and even her masculinity features (growth of leg hair and mustache).
Obesity can increase insulin hormone production because the role of insulin receptor is inhibited by fat. The role of insulin is very complex. Aside from regulating glucose distribution in blood vessels to body tissue, insulin also stimulates androgen hormones (male hormone). Along with androgen, insulin can influence the pattern of fatty deposit in women before reaching menopause.
In addition, fatty tissue also produces leptin hormone, which plays a vital role in women' s reproductive functions. The high level of leptin in a woman indicates that the beginning of the menstrual function (menarche) is coming early. Whereas, the low level of leptin in overweight women with polycystic ovary syndrome deals with the improved function of the ovaries.