Now that you have had your baby your probably caught up in nappy changing and feeding times etc., but also what to do about that extra baby weight you put on during pregnancy, here is a handy little guide with some tips on how to lose that extra weight easily and healthily.
If you packed on the normal 25 – 30 pounds of weight during pregnancy then it should only take you a couple of months to lose that extra weight with the right diet and exercise.
If you were overweight before the pregnancy or put on more than the average amount then it may take longer to shift naturally as you would expect, the problem is if you don’t do anything about it, it could stick around for longer.
Remember the most important thing to bear in mind when losing weight is to be patient, losing weight too quickly can be very bad for you body, i’m sure you have read of many celebrities who have lost all the weight in what seems like no time at all, but this is usually done with very, very strict diets and getting back into hard exercise before there body is ready for it, as I said this can be bad long term.
So without further ado here are some top tips for getting back into shape, remember, it took 9 months to make the baby, you should look for it to take that long to get back to your normal weight.
Do Not Diet
This will sound counter-productive, but going on a diet could ruin your post-pregnancy weight loss plans, depriving your body of nice foods could stress you out more than being a new mum does!, actually causing weight gain.
You will find that eating for hunger and eating healthily will strip the weight off much more naturally, cashew nuts, apple slices, carrot sticks and wheat crackers are all good for snacking on, so instead of dieting, aim to eat a good variety of foods, these healthy snack foods will keep your hunger at bay and give you a good energy boost.
If you are serious about losing weight then try not to go below 1,800 calories per day especially if breast feeding.
Eat Super Foods
When you are feeding a new baby, your body needs maximum nutrition, choose foods high in good nutrients and low in excess fat and calories.
Fish is a great super food packed with DHA, an essential fatty omega-3 acid that will help your newborn develop a healthy brain and nervous system, cold water fish such as salmon, tuna and sardines are the best sources of DHA.
Milk and yogurt are also great super foods as they veyr high in calcium and will help make strong bones, let’s not forget protein like lean meat like chicken and beans, being low in fat and high in protein they will keep you fuller for longer.
Whether breastfeeding actually helps you lose weight or not is still up for debate really, studies have shown that breastfeeding helps people return to there pre-baby weight much faster, some have found no difference between women who breast feed and those that bottle feed.
One thing is a fact however, and that is that breastfeeding is great for your baby’s immune system and provides fantastic health benefits for your baby, breast feeding also allows around 300 calories extra per day, more if you have a big eater or twins, don’t use this as an excuse to eat whatever you want though.
Keeping your body hydrated throughout the day is important, drinking plenty fills you up and can actually speed up your metabolism.
The exact amount you need each day is unknown but eight glasses is recommended, the color of your urine is a good indicator of whether you have enough fluids going into your body each day, if it is quite clear then this is fine and going to the bathroom about every 3 to 4 hours.
Whilst diet is important this is only one part of your weight loss plan, You also need to incorporate cardio and strength training exercises into your routine to keep your body and bones healthy. Exercise can help in many ways, when you exercise you release endorphins which relieve stress and depression, it also helps you sleep.
You don’t always need a gym either to get in shape, a brisk walk with your child can do wonders, if you can fit in at least 2 hours a week, this will be most beneficial, obviously finding time with a new baby will be difficult, but try to break it up into 10 minute increments and slowly work your way upto 20 – 30 minute workouts.
If you’ve had a C-section then get your doctors approval before starting any exercise routine, dealing with your baby is a workout in itself but try to incorporate some light weights into your routine to offer resistance and build strength.
It may seem an impossible task getting a decent night’s sleep with a baby to deal with regularly but a lack of sleep can ruin your weight loss goals and make it very hard to lose weight, when your tired your body releases a chemical called Cortisol which can promote weight gain. When your tired, your less likely to exercise, eat healthily or cook, favouring the drive-thru.
It is a good idea to sleep when your baby does, get in as many naps as you can during the day and goto bed early until your baby starts to sleep through the night.
Get Some Help
If you are still struggling to lose weight, get the help of a doctor or dietitian, they can help you design an eating plan making weight loss much more effective. The doctor will advise you when you can start exercising and how much weight you need to lose.
If you follow these few steps above i’m sure you can lose that extra baby weight without a problem.