Your body went through some pretty big changes during pregnancy. It grew a whole new organ, created a baby from scratch and stretched to accommodate that growing baby. If you’ve started to dream about getting your pre-pregnancy body back, you may be wondering whether it’s safe to lose weight when breastfeeding.
As long as you lose weight healthily, and don’t restrict the healthy foods you eat, it’s perfectly safe to lose weight and get fit whilst breastfeeding. In fact, the healthier you are, the better this will be for your baby. You should wait until your baby is, at least, two months old, however, because this will allow your body enough time to build up a good milk supply.
How can I lose weight when breastfeeding?
In order to stay healthy, maintain your supply and lose some weight, you should:
- eat healthy – don’t restrict the number of calories you eat. As a breastfeeding mother, you should continue to eat at least 1500 to 1800 calories each day, you may even need more than that. You might be surprised at just how much energy it takes to breastfeed a growing baby! Instead of restricting calories, focus instead on eating healthy foods. Cut out the junk, processed and sugary foods from your diet. Instead, reach for the fresh fruits, vegetables, and nuts.
- take up exercise – exercising is one of the best ways to lose weight. If you’re a new mama, going for a brisk daily walk with your baby in a sling could be all you need to shift those stubborn pounds. Or perhaps you’d prefer to try a mother and baby yoga class at your local gym? Some mamas find (slow) running, or a fast walk, to be a stress-relieving and enjoyable exercise, and you can go whenever you like so you won’t need to worry about being late for class.
- do it gradually – losing weight too quickly could actually have a negative impact on your milk supply. It’s important to lose weight gradually whilst breastfeeding. Remember, this isn’t a quick fix. This is about getting your health back to where you want it to be, and encouraging your body back to its pre-pregnancy shape. It’s not about overnight results or unsustainable lifestyle changes.
- do it together – invite your new mama friends to join you for a brisk walk round the park, or a pleasant afternoon stroll while your babies nap in the carrier or pram. Exercise doesn’t have to be a solitary thing. You can get your mom friends involved too.
What steps are you taking to try and lose weight when breastfeeding?
Written by Fiona (@Fiona_Peacock), mother, writer and lover of all things baby related.
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a trained medical doctor. Health & Parenting Ltd disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information, which is provided to you on a general information basis only and not as a substitute for personalized medical advice. All contents copyright © Health & Parenting Ltd 2016. All rights reserved.