Study Light Exercise Helps Pregnant Women Manage Babys Birth Weight

04.06.10 | FL News Team

Light exercise can help an expecting mom keep her newborn's birth weight down a bit. While that sounds like a bad thing, it's not, say researchers from Northern Arizona University and the University of Auckland, New Zealand. They found exercise doesn't result in an undersized infant. The researchers studied 84 first-time mothers, half of whom were told to pedal exercise bikes five days a week. The 40-minute workouts continued until the 36th week of pregnancy. The fit mothers had babies that were the same length as the others, but weighed on average about a third of a pound less.

 Contrary to the notion that chubby babies are good, studies have linked big birth weights with obesity later in life. The study's exercise regime didn't stunt a baby's growth and didn't interfere with the pregnant women's metabolism either. It just trimmed some of the fat the fetus accumulated in the womb. The findings are published in the "Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism."