New York: Women who quit smoking immediately before or after becoming pregnant gain more weight during and after pregnancy - but their babies are less likely to be born small than those born to smokers, a new study suggests.Researchers in Denmark found that women who quit smoking gained about six more pounds during their pregnancies than those who continued to smoke, and a similar amount in the year after giving birth.On the other hand, women who quit smoking early in pregnancy and nonsmokers gave birth to babies of similar birth weights, on average. Babies of women who kept smoking were more likely to be born at a low weight."The big thing to get out of this study is that quitting early in pregnancy is as helpful in respect to the birth weight of your baby as never having smoked while you were pregnant," Dr. Amber Samuel, a maternal-fetal medicine expert at Emory University School of Medicine in Atlanta, said."I think that can be an inspiration to moms who are looking to make a change in their lives."According to the American Cancer Society, between 10 and 15 percent of women smoke during pregnancy. Studies have linked smoking to premature birth and other complications, such as birth defects, low birth weight and stillbirth.
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