Producing a child and carrying it for nine months can be a wonderful and life changing experience. It is something that you will remember for the rest of your life.
That being said...
...it probably doesn’t come as a surprise that pregnancy will impact your weight. In fact, most woman gain anywhere from 5 to 7kgs of what is known as baby weight during pregnancy and struggle to lose it after giving birth. This doesn’t have to be you. With a little knowledge and know-how, you can shed that baby weight and start fitting back into your old clothes.
Know What Baby Weight Is
When most women hear the term baby weight, they just think of it as extra weight. Sure, it is extra weight, but it is important to understand where this extra weight comes from. When you are pregnant, your uterus will enlarge and your body will also fill with more blood. In addition to this, your body will be full of placenta, amniotic fluid, breast tissue and extra fat.
This extra fat acts as an energy source for the birth and breastfeeding. This extra weight is what is usually referred to as baby weight and it is necessary to ensure a healthy child, but most women actually gain more than the recommended amount of weight during pregnancy.
Not shedding this weight after pregnancy can have negative consequences, which usually include:
- A greater risk of complications during other pregnancies
- An increased risk of heart disease and diabetes
- Even higher health risks if you are already diagnosed with diabetes
- Increased risk of becoming overweight
Don’t fret just yet, because you can lose that weight with the following tips.
Know The Facts
You can read any woman’s magazine or listen to any celebrity story you want, but the truth of the matter is that losing this baby weight after pregnancy is going to take some time and work on your part. It will not just magically disappear after the pregnancy. In fact, a recent published study showed that most women held onto anywhere from 0.5 to 3kgs of their pregnancy weight for a time period of twelve months.
Another study was conducted with 831 women. This study showed that of the 831 women 40.3 percent of them retained more than 2.5kgs of this baby weight. Along with this, 14 to 20 percent of the women involved in the study actually retained more than 5kgs.
The World Health Organization found that it could take anywhere from two weeks to two years post birth for some women to shed this extra weight. This study involved 1,743 participants from all around the world. Regardless, of how much weight you gained during pregnancy, you can probably except to shed right around 5kgs in a one or two year time period. However, with the right diet and exercise routine, you shouldn’t have a problem getting back to your desired weight.
TIP 01. Stay Away From Low Calorie Diets
For most women, low calorie diets are extremely tempting because they offer the most weight loss in the shortest amount of time. Unfortunately, this is not the way to go because your body really needs good nutrition to heal and recover from what it just went through. This will be especially true if you are breastfeeding. Breastfeeding mothers will need more than the normal amount of calories.
What is even more troubling is that a low-calorie diet will lack in the important nutrients that you need. This will just leave you feeling drained and lacking in energy. You will already likely be sleep deprived for the first couple of months and a lack of energy is something that you do not need when you are trying to properly care for your newborn baby.
A recent study showed that women at a stable weight lost about 0.5kgs a week when they decreased their calorie intake by 500 calories a day. So, if you are consuming 2,000 calories a day, you could cut out 300 calories and burn the other 200 with daily exercise.
This would make a total of 500 calories a day. Even if you were breastfeeding losing 0.5kgs a week would not have a negative effect on your milk production or the baby’s growth.
TIP 02. Breastfeeding Is More Important Than You Think
Breastfeeding is not only beneficial for your baby, but it can provide the mother with many benefits as well. Here are all of the benefits that you and your child will receive when breastfeeding:
- For The Mother – Recent studies show that women who breastfeed have a reduced risk of developing type II diabetes, breast cancer, ovarian cancer and postnatal depression. Breastfeeding also helps the uterus return to its normal size faster.
- For The Child – Breast milk will contain every single nutrient that your child needs during the first six months of its life. It also reduces the risk of certain diseases that are common in infants. These diseases are lung conditions, skin conditions, obesity, diabetes, leukemia and sudden infant death syndrome. Breast milk will also help support the baby’s immune system.
*DO NOT use CheetaThin Appetite Suppressant while breast-feeding.
It has also been scientifically proven that breastfeeding can aid in weight loss as well. In fact, a study involving 4,922 women found that breastfeeding mothers lost around 1.7kgs in just six months after pregnancy. Just keep in mind that during the first three months of breastfeeding it is highly likely that you will actually put on weight. And, this is because of the extra calorie intake and lactation require a reduction in physical activity.
TIP 03. Always Keep Track Of What You Are Eating
Keeping track of your calories can be extremely important after giving birth. This technique will not only prevent you from over eating, but it will ensure you with 100 percent certainty that you are consuming the proper amount. A food diary is probably one of the best ways to tackle this problem and keep accurate recordings.
With all of the technology available, there are now a number of calorie tracking apps available that can assist you tracking your calories as well. Counting calories will be extremely important when it comes to reducing your portion sizes.
TIP 04. Take Advantage Of Fiber
Fiber will be crucial when it comes to getting back to your ideal weight. Fiber has the ability to reduce your hunger hormone levels and slow down digestion by making you feel fuller for longer periods of time. One recent study showed that just ten grams of fiber could account for a 3.7 percent reduction in belly fat over a period of five years.
TIP 05. Don’t Forget The Proteins
You probably already know that protein is important for nutrition, but it will also be critical when it comes to weight loss. Increasing your protein intake will help speed up your metabolism, decrease appetite and reduce your overall calorie intake. Protein has the ability to suppress the appetite by increasing the fullness hormones in the body. It also reduces the level of hunger hormones in the body as well. This will all be key when you are trying to lose weight.
Adding just 30 percent of protein could help you consume 441 fewer calories a day. There are a number of healthy sources that can provide you with the protein that you need. Some of these sources include eggs, fish, legumes, buts, seeds, dairy products, and meats.
TIP 06. Restock The Kitchen
Caring for a newborn is going to require you to be cooped up in the home for lengthy periods of time. This can sometimes lead to boredom, which will lead to snacking. There is nothing wrong with snacking, but unhealthy snacking will have a negative effect on your weight. This is why it is more important than ever to clean out those cabinets. If you have a delicious chocolate bar sitting in the fridge tempting you or a cabinet full of cookies these are probably going to be your go-to snacking option.
Your best option is just to get rid of them altogether and stock the kitchen with some healthier snacking options. Go for nuts, fruits, vegetables, and sugar free yogurts. One study showed that just keeping a bowl of fruit on the counter has the ability to reduce body mass index just like keeping unhealthy on the counter has the ability to increase the body mass index.
TIP 07. Regulate Your Leptin Levels
Leptin, a hormone that is produced by fat cells, helps regulate hunger. In fact, it is often referred to as the “hunger hormone”. Leptin works by signally the brain that the stomach is full. There are several factors that interfere with the balance of this hormone.
These factors include disruptions in serotonin and insulin, hormones responsible for regulating appetite. Another factor that causes in imbalance in leptin levels is weight gain. When an individual gains weight, their leptin levels increase, resulting in the brain sending out false hunger signals, resulting in overeating.
There are several things that you can do to balance your leptin levels. One of the first things that you will be challenged with is limiting your caloric intake. Doing this will in turn help you lose weight, which will also help balance your leptin levels.
A daily intake of 2,000 calories is recommended for this purpose.
The key to regulating leptin levels is consuming adequate complex carbohydrates, which have shown to help sustain energy for longer periods of time. Complex carbohydrates sustain energy longer than simple sugars, like potato chips, cakes and candy bars.