The UK based weight management organisation is working in partnership with the RCM to raise awareness of the importance of healthy weight management in pregnancy to improve the health of women and their babies. Slimming World is the only national weight management organisation to support women through every stage of their pregnancy – from pre-conception to post-natal care. For pregnant women, the focus is not on weight loss, but on healthy lifestyle changes, always with the support of their midwife or healthcare team. Our priority is a happy, healthy mum-to be.
Slimming World and the RCM
Providing support to women throughout all stages of life is something Slimming World is proud to offer. Many members join Slimming World after gaining weight during a pregnancy. They can then be worried about falling back into less healthy eating habits and regaining excess weight during subsequent pregnancies. More than 20 years ago, knowing how excess gestational weight gain can increase the risks to mum and baby, Slimming World opened their doors to pregnant members to offer support. Since then, we have worked closely with the RCM to develop our pregnancy policy and ensure we can safely support members throughout their pregnancies, with a focus on developing healthy behaviours and preventing excess weight gain, rather than weight loss.
Advantages to behaviour change in pregnancy
Eating a healthy, balanced diet and preventing excess weight gain is important for health at any time in life. During pregnancy, when the benefits can extend to the unborn baby and the wider family, this can feel even more valuable. Taking small steps in becoming more active also has significant benefits for both physical and mental wellbeing during pregnancy, birth and post-natally. Pregnancy can be a key time to offer support as mums-to-be can often be more open to making behaviour changes.
An evidence-based approach
Slimming World invests in ongoing evaluation and development of our programme to ensure we continue to stay up to date with the latest evidence and national guidelines. We also publish research to add to the scientific literature in key areas. Our Nutrition, Research & Health function is comprised of registered nutritionists and dietitians, plus experts in psychology, food data and research. In addition, we are supported by a specialist advisor panel, including experts in the fields of nutrition, activity, psychology and behaviour change.
Visit slimmingworld.co.uk/health for more information about our approach and the underlying science, and our factsheet contains information on how Slimming World supports pregnant and breastfeeding members, including our policy.
Scroll down for an overview of resources/projects developed through the Alliance to date:
The Slimming World and RCM website
Together Slimming World and the RCM have created a website to help women successfully manage their weight before, during and after pregnancy.
It includes valuable advice for women who are trying for a baby, are already pregnant or mums who have a newborn, including information about eating well, staying active, living a healthier lifestyle and managing weight.
To access the website, visit www.slimmingworld.co.uk/mums/
Website cards for mums
Midwives can order Slimming World cards, which include a link to the Slimming World/RCM website (mentioned above), to give to women who are interested in accessing information on a healthy lifestyle before, during and after pregnancy.
To order the cards, please email [email protected]
Combined due date & BMI calculator
We’ve developed this two-in-one BMI and gestational weeks calculator for midwives, to help you calculate a woman’s due date and Body Mass Index at booking.
The wheel uses sensitive and pregnancy-specific wording relating to weight management in pregnancy, to help midwives have supportive conversations with mums-to-be.
Discussing weight during pregnancy booklet
Discussing weight can be difficult. The Discussing weight during pregnancy booklet, created through the partnership between Slimming World and the RCM, is designed to help midwives discuss a woman’s weight in the context of possible weight-related risks during her pregnancy.
It contains a chart which can be used to show pregnant women what their weight at booking means. The wording next to the chart has been carefully written to provide helpful pointers for discussion and is specifically designed to enable a positive, sensitive and productive conversation. Printed copies of the resource can be requested by emailing [email protected].
Following feedback from some midwives working with women whose BMI lies outside the existing chart, we have also created an extended version of the chart.
Discussing Weight During PregnancyDownload
i-learn module, Obesity – supporting women
Slimming World has worked with the RCM to develop an online course to help midwives and midwifery support workers to support pregnant women with healthy weight management. The module, which takes approximately 90 minutes to complete, includes information, practical tips and audio examples to enhance the learning experience. RCM members can click here to access the course free of charge.
Supporting RCM members to lead a healthy lifestyle
Slimming World is delighted to support the RCM’s Caring for You Campaign through our bespoke resources on healthy eating and staying active for RCM members. These include:
- Top tips for eating healthily and keeping active
- Ideas for healthy eating
- Food and mood
- Preparing healthy food for work
- Healthy and filling microwaveable meals in minutes
- Keeping healthy and active during the menopause
- Ways to improve sleep quality and manage changing sleep patterns to support a healthier lifestyle
- Alcohol and health
For any further information, please contact Slimming World by emailing [email protected]