Nicotine Replacement in Pregnancy Linked to Unborn Obesity

Nicotine Replacement in Pregnancy Linked to Unborn Obesity

Is all nicotine bad

We all know that smoking is bad, and that smoking is REALLY bad if you are pregnant. So, pregnant women should quit smoking, right? Not so fast. New studies are indicating that pregnant women could also be causing problems for their unborn babies if they are trying to quit using cigarettes by turning to nicotine gum or patches. Claim Your 20 Free Pregnancy Tests – Click Here

This completely changes what doctors have previously told their patients about trying to quit smoking, no matter how they did it: nicotine gum, patches, sprays, lozenges, etc.. Now, doctors are having to change their ways of dealing with pregnant patients who smoke.

Nicotine equals obesity?

New studies are showing that pregnant women who are exposed to nicotine, whether it be in cigarettes or in something like a stop smoking aid, can have a higher risk of having an obsese unborn baby .Nicotine tricks the liver into producing more triglycerides, and that leads to obesity, even in unborn babies.

Some studies have shown that babies born to mothers who smoke (or use nicotine products) have almost a 50 percent higher chance of becoming overweight.

What the studies show

There have been animal based studies that are actually very disturbing in showcasing the effects of nicotine on unborn babies. In a study showing lab rats who had been exposed to nicotine, the same amount as a human is exposed to in one cigarette. (Keep in mind that nicotine replacements contain MUCH more nicotine than one cigarette.) The rats that were born were normal size at birth, but six months later, they were beginning to show signs of obesity.

What this means

Of course, if the choice is between cigarettes and nicotine replacement, it is still advisable that pregnant moms choose nicotine replacement, as it is the “lesser of two evils”. Of course, the first choice is to go cold turkey if you are trying to quit smoking, but we all know that is much, much easier said than done.

It’s not easy for anyone to quit smoking, much less a pregnant woman, who is already going through and having difficulty with stress management and all sorts of hormones. It’s not easy, so if you are pregnant and you are a smoker, talk to your doctor to see what is going to be the best way for you to either quit or at least cut back on your nicotine intake.

It’s always better to quit, but cutting back is better than nothing. Of course, more research is still needed on this topic, and will be sure to be coming soon.

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Dr. Prabha Sahgal, MD
Dr. Prabha Sahgal, MD | ConceiveEasy
Dr. Prabha Sahgal MD, is board certified in obstetrics and gynecology and subspecialty board certified in reproductive endocrinology and infertility. Dr. Sahgal holds a B.S. degree from MIT in molecular biology and currently serves on the ConceiveEasy board of directors.