How Do I Lose the Baby Weight?
Should you diet while nursing? Well, according to a report from the New England Journal of Medicine, a moderate diet along with an exercise program can help mothers lose the ‘baby weight’ without harming the child. Now, this seems like common sense, doesn’t it? Why study something so, well, basic. Good question. The study was comprised of 40 women who started trying to lose weight about a month after the baby was born.
Here’s the details of the study:
- Of the 40 women in the study half didn’t change their diet or being exercising. The other half did. Of those that being watching what they eat and working out, they decreased calories by 500 per day and perform exercise four times per week for about 45 minutes over a 10 week period.
- Those that dieted and exercises lost .5-1lb per week while those that did nothing lost nothing, they simply maintained (duh).
- The babies in both groups grew the same, gaining the expected amount of weight.
8 Steps To Lose Weight After Baby
- Don’t gorge during pregnancy. The goal should be in the 25-40lbs or as your doctor recommends. Those that gain more have a harder time losing it.
- It is good to weight a few weeks (3-4) to begin dieting and exercising. This gives your body a chance to heal and get back to normal at least a bit.
- Eat a balanced, moderate diet. Meaning, no fad type diets that completely eliminate one food group, of course no starvation type diets (HCG). Eat quality calories that provide micronutrients. I often talk about being able to eat ‘junk’ food and losing fat or losing weight because it satisfies my macronutrients. However, when you are nursing and recovering from a delivery your child, your body is thirsty for micronutrients. The key here is moderation. That means no fad diets, no eliminating entire food groups, no starvation plans. Of course good nutrition for you equals good nutrition for the baby as your food intake has a direct correlation with the quality of your breast milk.
- General ballpark for calories for weight loss after a pregnancy would be about 1800-2000 calories, nothing lower than that.
- Shoot for about 5lbs of weight loss per month.
- Drink plenty of water (8-12 glasses per day). Your body needs additional fluid to make the breastmilk, and of course it is just healthy for you.
- Slowly ease into your workout routine. Don’t go in the first day and start doing squats equal to your bodyweight. Start gradually by walking briskly, then take it up a notch, until you are finally at about 30-60 minute of full blown, all out workouts. Listen to your body.
- Remember it took 9 months to gain the weight, it is normal if it takes several months to get back to where you were.
So, think long term. Set little goals. Commit to following your diet program exactly today. Commit to eating perfect for the week. Commit to not missing any exercise sessions. Little things like that. As you are able to meet these committments, you’ll be able to lose the weight that you want to and get the body you want!