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Exercise and physical activity in pregnancy 

Exercise and physical activity in pregnancy
Chapter:
Exercise and physical activity in pregnancy
Author(s):

Sir Peter Gluckman

, Mark Hanson

, Chong Yap Seng

, and Anne Bardsley

DOI:
10.1093/med/9780198722700.003.0029
Page of

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date: 19 August 2019

Exercise has many beneficial effects for pregnant women and their offspring, reducing insulin resistance and blood pressure and supporting angiogenesis, while also helping to maintain a healthy weight and body composition. Exercise/physical activity also been reported to reduce the risks of large for gestational age/small for gestational age babies and of preterm birth. Moderate exercise of 30 minutes or more on most days is recommended. Reasonable goals of aerobic conditioning in pregnancy should be to maintain a good fitness level throughout pregnancy without trying to reach peak fitness level or train for athletic competition. However, extreme exercise in late gestation is cautioned against, as it is associated with lower birth weights and the possibility of long-term adverse consequences on the offspring.

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