Scientists at the German Institute for Quality and Efficiency in Health Care in Cologne advise women to not allow the fear of weight gain to keep them putting off the decision to use pills.
The researchers assessed the research on issues concerning contraception and weight gain posted on their Web site -- informedhealthonline.org.
The scientists say hormonal methods of contraception such as the pPill and intrauterine devices -- known as IUDs -- are the most effective long-term ways to avoid pregnancy. The researchers said that in studies women using the pill, both weight gain and weight loss were reported.
"Trials which systematically assessed what happens to women when they use the pill have not proven any substantial link between hormonal contraception and weight gain," Peter Sawicki, director of the institute, said in a statement. "Many women gain some weight as they get older, whether or not they use the pill. Limiting contraceptive choices will not help women keep their weight under control."