Immediately after delivery, young mothers dream of returning to the original size of clothing as soon as possible. But this is not as simple as it seems. Cares for the child leave time neither for physical exercises nor for the pool and a visit to the gym. Therefore, most women not only have troubles with losing weight after childbirth but also, on the contrary, during the first year of the baby’s life keep on gaining excess weight. That’s why the problem of weight loss after pregnancy is one of the most urgent for young mothers.
Where Does Excess Weight Come From?
In general, there are several reasons why future mothers gain far more pounds during pregnancy than they should.
The first and the most basic reason is the stereotype that a pregnant woman should “eat for two.” Her own over-eating future mother justifies by the fact that this kid wants to eat a grilled chicken at three o’clock in the morning. In fact, during pregnancy, you do not need to increase the daily amount of food. Moreover, it is even dangerous for the health of both the woman and the fetus, as it can provoke problems such as gestational diabetes or heart disease. The diet of a pregnant woman should become healthier: a maximum of vegetables and fruit, a minimum of fatty, roast, smoked food.
Let’s not forget about the fact that the future mother often limits herself in physical activities. A restriction of movement means that the energy received from food is wasted slower. Therefore, during pregnancy, the fat accumulates more intensively than usual.
The hereditary inclination to stoutness also plays a huge role. If one of the parents of a future mother is obese, then the likelihood that she will gain more pounds sharply increases. However, heredity only means that a woman will need to monitor her own diet and weight more carefully.
Finally, weight gain during pregnancy can provoke fluid retention and a number of obstetric problems in which the process of removing fluid from the body slows down. Gestosis is one example of such a disease.
Is It Easy To Lose Weight After Birth?
Of course, every woman wants to regain her former shape after giving birth. However, this can be not so easy. In the first months after the birth of a child, the whole life of a young mother is devoted to the care of the baby. A new mom forgets about the gym, and a tough diet is impossible as the mother needs to breastfeed. All this leads to the fact that more and more annoying pounds appear.
Unfortunately, a pill for instant weight loss after pregnancy has not yet been invented. Still, there are several basic rules that will help a woman adjust her weight and cope with the annoying extra pounds.
10 Rules About Weight Loss After Pregnancy
Rule 1 . Have Patience
Weight loss after pregnancy cannot and should not be fast. Pregnancy is a huge stress for the body associated with a lack of vitamins and minerals, a change in the hormonal background, and a decrease in physical activity. Thus, the recovery period can take from 6 months to a year.
Rule 2 . The Regime of the Day
Almost 24 hours a day a mom is busy caring for the baby. Mothers usually don’t have time for thinking about themselves and their health. However, let’s look at the problem from a different angle: the well-being of the child depends on the well-being of the mother. Being overweight is not just a problem of external appeal. It is, first of all, health problems that will not fail to “stick” to the young exhausted woman. A sick mother is unlikely to be able to provide the child with good care. In addition, internal dissatisfaction with her own appearance provokes stress which the kid will definitely feel.
Therefore, despite your occupation, organize your day in such a way that the diet is balanced. A young mother should eat 4-5 times a day. When the baby is older, it is better to do it with the child. Give up the habit of eating the rest of the food after the baby.
Rule 3 . Healthy Diet
Do not go on a diet immediately after the birth of the child. First, it is absolutely useless at this time. And secondly, during breastfeeding, you need a proper diet. It is enough just to monitor your meals. Food should not only be tasty but also as useful and as varied as possible. It’s not a secret that childbirth is a huge stress for the whole body. And in critical periods the body experiences a severe deficit of three basic elements – proteins, iron, and calcium. They must necessarily be present daily in your diet. The richest in calcium are dairy products, cheese, and fish. Proteins are also necessary – vegetables (nuts, soybeans, beans) and animal ones (meat, fish, poultry, cheese).
Rule 4 . Breastfeeding
Nutritionists say that women who breastfeed the baby get back to their former shape much faster. This is due to the fact that breastfeeding contributes to a faster reduction of the uterus and its return to the prenatal state. Although, many women during breastfeeding, on the contrary, gain weight. This is due to the fact that they consume a lot of milk products in huge quantities, and choose the fatter ones, believing that they will improve breast milk.
In fact, you do not need to eat much more food, following the well-known expression “I eat for two.” However, food should be twice as useful and richer in vitamins. After all, the babies do not need extra calories. They need specific elements and vitamins. What’s more, doctors believe that breastfeeding burns around 500-600 calories a day which also contributes to a faster weight loss after pregnancy.
Rule 5 . Walking
In general, you need to walk with the baby 2-3 times a day. During this period, a young mother can burn as many calories as in a fitness room. Try to think about daily walks with a stroller as about an opportunity to spare some time to yourself, your body. By the way, it is proved that fresh air contributes to the better production of mother’s milk.
A sling for the baby can become a good workout as well. The child is gaining weight gradually, so the load on the muscles will also increase gradually. The main thing is to choose the right sling.
Rule 6 . Psychological Training
Postpartum depression, fatigue, the same routine every day, which young mother experiences – all this leads to a lot of stress. And then the figure on the scales also upsets a woman. And at the same time, life seems not so dull if you sweeten it with a chocolate bar. Still, the effect of the “sugar” antidepressant is short-lived.
Train your willpower. In fact, it’s not difficult to say goodbye to being overweight, but for this, you have to work a little on yourself: make up a diet, identify suitable foods, and follow the chosen course.
Rule 7 . Trust A Specialist
It is worth finding the strength and turning to a competent nutritionist who will help, without waiting for the termination of breastfeeding, to begin to work on weight loss after pregnancy.
The optimal weight loss rate is 0.5-1 lb. per week. The process, as experts emphasize, also needs to be correct. Excessive weight loss is fraught with health problems, no less than obesity. Weight loss after pregnancy should not be sharp. This is a long-term systematic work with the care of breastfeeding and the mother’s own health.
Rule 8 . Consult Doctors
During the first year after childbirth, be sure to visit your doctor. 6 months after the birth of the child, take a complete blood test and hormone tests. It is necessary to make sure that the hormonal background has stabilized.
If you cannot lose weight for a long time, consult the endocrinologist and nutritionist. Perhaps after labor, the work of the endocrine system or metabolism has been disrupted. In addition, you should go to the doctor if, within 2-3 months after childbirth, you do not restore the function of the ovaries and the menstruation does not begin.
Rule 9 . Have Sex
Doctors recommend abstaining from sexual intercourse for 6-8 weeks after the birth of the child. But there are no strict limitations in this issue. You can resume sexual life when you feel that you are emotionally and physically ready for it. Intimate gymnastics can help with physical recovery.
Rule 10 . Don’t Forget To Enjoy Motherhood
Weight loss after pregnancy may seem long and painful if you concentrate too much on the problems of shape and excess weight. Do not forget about the main thing, now you’re a mom. This is the reason for joy and pride. Later, looking back, you will understand how wonderful the first months of your baby’s life were. You can get your body shape back, but these wonderful moments – never.
Born in Belarus, 1985, a pedagogue and family psychologist, mother. Taking part in procedures of social adaptation of the foster children in new families. Since 2015 is a chief editor of the motherhow.com project, selecting the best and up-to-date material for those, who are planning, expecting, and already having babies.