Written on 1 August 2022
The HCG levels are checked by a doctor when a woman is unsure if she is pregnant. However, the absence of HCG in her blood does not always imply that she is not pregnant. For instance, she might be too early in her pregnancy for HCG levels to rise.
Every aspiring and would-be mom knows how important HCG is but do they understand what causes low HCG levels in early pregnancy? Here are all the details starting from the basics of HCG and then the causes of low Hcg and how to increase HCG levels during pregnancy by food.
Human Chorionic Gonadotropin (HCG) is often referred to as the pregnancy hormone because it is produced by cells created in the placenta, which provides nourishment to the egg after it has been fertilised and attached to the uterine wall. A blood test may identify levels approximately 11 days after pregnancy, while a urine test can reveal levels 12-14 days after conception. HCG levels typically double every 72 hours for the first 8-11 weeks of pregnancy, then gradually fall and level out for the rest of the pregnancy.
HCG levels of more than five million (mIU/mL) international units per millilitre often suggest pregnancy. The first test score is considered to be the baseline level, which may range from 20 mIU/mL or even lower to 2,500 mIU/mL. Because of a medical practice known as "doubling time", the baseline level is crucial. During the first four weeks of a healthy pregnancy, HCG levels normally increase every two to three days. The levels will almost double every 96 hours after six weeks. Whether a woman's baseline level is more than 5 mIU/mL, her doctor may order a follow-up test to see if the number doubles.
HCG injections are administered to pregnant women unless they are essential because the body of a pregnant woman needs high quantities of HCG to help sustain the pregnancy. Therefore, women with low HCG levels are given HCG injections during pregnancy.
"Low HCG levels may indicate a very early pregnancy or a pregnancy that ends in loss," Dr Lang, who is an Ob-Gyn at Baylor Obstetrics and Gynaecology at Children Pavillion for women in Texas, explains. Here are some other reasons for low HCG levels -
Miscalculated gestational age - Low HCG levels usually indicate a pregnancy that was considered to be between 6 and 12 weeks is not actually in that time period. Ultrasound and other HCG tests may be utilised to measure gestational age accurately.
Miscarriage - Low HCG levels might sometimes suggest that the woman has had or will have a miscarriage. If the pregnancy fails to produce a placenta, the levels may initially be normal but fail to increase.
Blighted egg - When an egg is fertilised, it adheres to the uterine wall but does not grow further. The gestational sac may produce HCG hormone, but the amount does not grow since the egg does not mature.
Ectopic conception - Ectopic pregnancy occurs when the fertilised egg stays in the fallopian tube and develops there, which is fatal. Low HCG levels may be indicative of an ectopic pregnancy.
Although sometimes it's not possible for a woman to increase her HCG levels naturally, a few things can be considered to sustain normal pregnancy.
HCG increases naturally in the body; however, if a woman's HCG is critically low, her doctor may prescribe medications or injections. A study claims that the HCG diet helps store energy for would-be mothers for the first trimester. Here's all about it-
The HCG diet severely restricts calories, generally to 500 per day but occasionally up to 1,500, according to Weinandy, an RD at Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center in Columbus. The HCG diet significantly decreases fat because of this stringent limitation, she says.
Here is a list of allowed foods, according to the HCG diet website:
Oranges, apples, strawberries, and red grapefruit are among the fruits available.
Vegetables that aren't starchy celery, Lettuce, onions, cabbage, cucumbers, and tomatoes are all options.
Chicken breast, shrimp, lean ground beef, white fish and lobster are all examples of lean meat.
The diet prohibits the following:
Fatty foods include fatty fish, nuts, and anything containing oil.
Potatoes, for example, are starchy vegetables.
Sugar of any form should not be included in the diet.
Although it is important to know what causes low HCG levels in early pregnancy, It is equally important to remember that It is normal for HCG to progress slowly during early pregnancy. Also, some women have a healthy pregnancy throughout with not very high levels of HCG. Also, what works for one might not work for another. Food plays an important role in keeping a woman's hormones in balance, ensuring a healthy pregnancy. Follow the doctor's advice and make diet plans accordingly. Women should watch their symptoms, eat healthily and work as per their doctor's suggestions.
Beth W. Orenstein. https://www.everydayhealth.com/diet-nutrition/the-hcg-diet.aspx .www.everydayhealth.com
Becky Young on November 3, 2017.https://www.healthline.com/health/pregnancy/low-hcg#causes .www.healthline.com
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