Once the new baby has arrived, many women look at their bodies with fear or discouragement. Suddenly, they have so much extra weight to lose, particularly on their abdomens. This weight was gained naturally during pregnancy but will take motivation and work to lose completely during the postpartum months. Consistently following these tips can help new mothers know how to lose weight while breastfeeding.
First, new moms should choose fresh, healthy foods over processed or sugary foods. Processed foods consistently have more calories than fruits, vegetables and other healthy snacks do. In addition, processed foods often have added chemicals, preservatives, sweeteners, flavorings and colors yet have lost any healthy nutrients that were once in them. New moms should gravitate toward basic foods in all of the food groups, such as whole grains, lean meats and fish, milk and yogurt, fresh fruits and vegetables and healthy fats, including olive oil and avocados. Protein is particularly important for these women to consume because it will give them lasting energy without packing on weight.
Second, moms learning how to lose weight while breastfeeding must be sure to consume enough calories each day to maintain a steady but healthy weight loss. Because breastfeeding burns around 850 calories each day, women should consume at least 1,800 calories daily and should aim for weight loss of one to no more than two pounds each week. One easy way to control hunger and decrease emotional eating is by eating several small meals throughout the day. New mothers should aim for five to six small meals each day, making sure to consume protein during each one.
Third, when learning how to lose weight while breastfeeding, new mothers should use a combination of cardiovascular exercises and strength training in their exercise routines. Cardiovascular workouts burn calories and work off fat while strength training defines the muscles. Increased muscle mass will increase the efficiency with which calories are burned. New moms have a variety of creative ways that they can work out even without going to the gym. Pushing the stroller around the neighborhood, walking with the baby and climbing the stairs are all great ways to burn calories. Home exercise DVDs can help moms work out on their own timetables.
Finally, mothers of new babies should be aware that losing their extra weight may take a number of months. Once again, weight loss should be slow and consistent in order for it to be healthy. If weight loss occurs too quickly, the mother may be starving herself and decreasing the nutrients in her breast milk. It may take up to six months to work off all the extra weight, and even then, moms may notice that their abdomens are not quite as firm as they once were.
Baby weight is not destined to stay forever around one’s midsection. With dedication, mindful eating and moderate exercising, new moms will quickly discover how to lose weight while breastfeeding. These women will then feel energized and confident about their bodies.