How Can I Lose My Pregnancy Weight?
It’s normal to want your pre-baby body back after you give birth. However, this is something that takes time. Besides, it is already a lot taking care of a newborn, adjusting to a new routine, and recovering from childbirth. While you might have heard of women who lose their postpartum weight in weeks and look like nothing happened just remember that for most people, losing weight after your baby doesn’t happen this way.
What’s pregnancy weight?
Weight gain is expected during pregnancy. In fact, many medical experts recommend that women within a healthy weight range who are carrying one baby gain (11.5 to 16 kg) during pregnancy. However, your doctor may also have a different recommendation based on your own needs. Aside from the baby, pregnancy weight consists of the placenta, amniotic fluid, breast tissue, blood, uterus enlargement and extra fat stores. The extra fat acts as an energy reserve for birth and breastfeeding. However, excess weight gain can result in too much fat. This is what people generally refer to as “baby weight,” and it’s very common.
What are tips I could try to lose the baby weight?
Breastfeed your baby if you can
Breastfeeding your baby during the first 6 months of life (or much longer) has many benefits for both you and your baby. It’s not just healthy but also great for your waistline as when you breastfeed you burn several hundred calories a day.
Avoid crash diets
Do not go on a crash diet (not eating enough) or a fad diet (popular diets that limit certain types of foods and nutrients). After delivering a baby, your body needs good nutrition to heal and recover. Using Crash diets probably makes you drop kgs at first, but those first few kgs you lose are fluid and will come back. Instead decreasing your calorie intake by about 500 calories per day will stimulate safe weight loss of about 0.5 kg per week.
Eat fibre-rich foods
Eating foods that are high in fibre has been shown to help with weight loss. Soluble fibre foods like; beans, avocados, sweet potatoes, apples, and oats (just to name a few) may also help you feel fuller for longer by slowing down digestion and reducing hunger hormone levels.
It can be hard to tell the difference between being thirsty and being hungry. If you drink some water first, you might feel full and won't want to snack later. Plus, if you’re dehydrated, your body won’t burn as many calories. Try to have a glass of water at least every time you nurse.
Cardio, such as walking, jogging, running, cycling, and interval training, helps you burn calories and has numerous health benefits. Although exercise alone may not help you lose weight, if combined with good nutrition it is much more effective. Oh, and you don’t have to hit the gym! Put the baby in the stroller and take a brisk walk in the fresh air. Start slowly, working your way up to 30 minutes five times a week.
Get enough sleep
Try your best to get at least 7 hours of sleep every day (even if it’s not all at once). We know just how hard it can be adjusting now that the baby is here. However, when you don't get enough sleep, there's a chance you'll gain weight. Set up your baby’s bedtime routine with activities like a bath, reading, and singing. Stick to the routine every night, and they’ll soon learn that bedtime means sleep.
Avoid unhealthy foods
As tempting as they may be, highly processed food, sugar and refined carbs are high in calories and usually low in nutrients. All of which can counteract your weight loss efforts. It’s easy to reduce your sugar intake by avoiding processed foods and sticking to whole foods such as vegetables, legumes, fruits, meats, fish, eggs, nuts, and yoghurt.
Ask for help
There’s no shame in asking for help! Being a new parent can be a daunting role and a lot of work. Sleep deprivation and stress can be overwhelming, and 1 in 9 new mothers also experience postpartum depression. A healthy weight after pregnancy is important, it shouldn’t add undue stress and anxiety. Your doctor or a dietitian can help you find support if you’re having a hard time losing the extra pounds. You don't have to do it alone.
The bottom line
Gaining some extra weight after pregnancy is very common and nothing to beat yourself up about. You just brought life onto this earth! Having a healthy weight is important and beneficial but should never be something you stress or obsess about. Enjoy the season you are in and spend time with your newborn. The most effective ways to lose weight are through a healthy diet, breastfeeding, and exercise. Talk to your doctor for advice and support.
Stay informed, stay in control Are there some tips here that you are looking to try?