It is determined that 29% of women between the ages of 20 and 39 are obese. Overall the rate of obesity has reached 32% and continues to increase.

BMI (body mass index) which is calculated by taking the weight in kilograms and dividing it by the height in m2. BMI 25 kg/m2 is considered overweight and 30 kg/m2 is considered obese. Obesity predisposes to diabetes, hypertension, pregnancy loss and neural tube defect, spina bifida, heart defects, cleft palate, cleft lip and anal atresia.

There are also difficulties with delivery, including cesarean section and also with anesthesia. Following delivery there is an increased risk of thromboembolism. Nutritional help and vitamin and mineral supplementation is required. In most cases for overweight and obese individuals weight gain would need to be limited to below 25 lbs during pregnancy.