A lot of women experience problems shedding extra baby weight, and some women put on many times the weight of their unborn infant during pregnancy. This is perfectly natural, but it can be a real pain to get rid of it!
If you decided to breast feed, however, you already have a good head start. Breastfeeding is literally the fastest way to shed calories – they’re flowing right out of your body in the form of fatty milk! However, it is important to maintain a proper diet, and make sure that you don’t treat breastfeeding itself as a weight-loss cure, but rather take it as a bonus added to your healthy diet and exercise plan. Here are five things you need to know about how to lose weight while breastfeeding:
- Take it slow. You won’t establish a good milk supply until your baby is at least 2 months old, so trying to lose weight by cutting calories will only hinder your body’s ability to produce milk. You may lose weight fast in the beginning, but your health and your baby’s health may suffer in the long run. Until you reach the two month mark get into a ight exercise routine or yoga three to five times a week to keep your activity levels up.
- Breastfeed for as long as you can. Conventional wisdom gives you all kinds of different advice as to when to stop, but research has shown that women who breastfeed for longer than six months lose more weight. Breastfeed on demand for as long as your doctor deems healthy.
- Do not eat less than 1,500 calories a day if you are breastfeeding. This will severely impact your milk supply. At the same time, try not to consume more than 1,800 calories a day, as this will mean that you’re taking in more calories than you’re burning, and you’ll put on weight.
- After your baby is 2 months old, aim to lose 1.5 pounds per week, and no more. If you’re losing more than this then you’ll be impacting your milk supply, and among other things this will cause your weight loss to slow down.
- Join a post-natal fitness class, or Weight Watchers (who have a special program for new mothers). The exercise is specially tailored to help you lose weight while breastfeeding, and you will also have more of a chance of sticking with it if you are part of a group.
Texas Children’s Hospital : Breastfeeding