Did I gain fat cells during my pregnancies?
Asked by on Apr 23, 2009
in Family & Pregnancy
I am 28 and I have had 5 pregnancies. (I have 6 children - one pregnancy was twins!) I am about 10 pounds overweight, but I have a lot of fat on my hips and thighs. I was told a long time ago that there are only two way to get more fat cells, and one of them was to be pregnant. Is that true?
During the third trimester of pregnancy, the fetus (not the mother) begins to develop fat cells. If Mom gains excess weight, the fetus produces lots of fat cells and increases the capacity to store fat for life. Puberty is the other critical time for fat cell production, when the sex hormones kick in. And so, yes, there are two times to generate fat cells: in utero and at puberty. After puberty, the number of fat cells remains the same, but each fat cell can get bigger; however, in some cases, bodies might produce more fat cells if an adult gains a significant amount of weight.