Staying Healthy After Birth
Its important to keep eating well and doing moderate physical activity after the birth. This will give you more energy to care for your new baby.
There are a couple of other ways to get to a healthy weight.
BreastfeedBreastfeeding combined with a healthy diet can help with weight loss after birth because it burns extra calories. Breastmilk is all your baby needs up until around six months.
Plan for weight loss Its a good idea to plan for losing weight once youve recovered from birth.
In the early weeks after birth, you can begin by just walking with your baby in a pram, baby carrier or sling. You could also join a community-run or private weight loss group or use a gym that offers child care. Many early childhood centres run free walking or exercise groups for new mothers.
Your GP, dietitian or child and family health nurse could help with ideas and contacts, or you could look online for weight loss or exercise groups near you.
What’s Causing The Weight Gain
Much of the weight that you gain during pregnancy is not fat, but is related to the baby. Here is a breakdown of how 35 pounds adds up:
- Baby: 8 pounds
- Placenta: 2 to 3 pounds
- Amniotic fluid: 2 to 3 pounds
- Breast tissue: 2 to 3 pounds
- Blood supply: 4 pounds
- Fat stores: 5 to 9 pounds
- Uterus growth: 2 to 5 pounds
Eat Frequent But Small Meals
This could help you manage your weight, whether you are pregnant or not. Eating frequent but small meals helps you manage your portion size. This is especially useful during pregnancy when eating a full meal can make you feel sick. Experts advise eating three not-too-big main meals and two to three smaller meals per day .
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Helps The Child Feel Loved
How do you think a child feels knowing their parents want to spend time with themtalking, sharing experiences, playing games, listening to them? It will make them feel as though they are important, and a child that feels important is happier and more apt to thrive. Setting aside chores or work to spend time with your children demonstrates that theyre essentialthat they matter. What a gift to give your child!
If a child has your undivided attention, it signals that they are loved and important to you. This can be further nurtured by experiencing joyful activities together, as it demonstrates that you want to spend time with your children over and above all of the daily demands.
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Effective Ways To Lose Weight After Pregnancy
Once your baby is born, you might get entangled in a web of problems. You may think about several questions like how to take care of your baby when to feed him or her, or even how to could get rid of the extra weight that you picked up during pregnancy.
However, losing weight after delivery could be a daunting task. The process may become even more difficult If you had put on more weight as recommended by your doctor during your pregnancy.
The reduction of this weight could even take up to one year. On the other hand, if you had a normal weight during pregnancy as was recommended by your doctor, then it might be easily reduced.
You could lose the entire pregnancy weight in a couple of months. But this may be possible only if you follow the different tips that can help you to lose weight after delivery.
It is very crucial to lose weight after delivery because any such weight could stick with you for a longer time.Besides this, there are several other important reasons for pregnant ladies to lose weight after delivery. Let us have a look at them.
Setting Realistic Weight Loss Goals
Reaching a healthy weight after pregnancy reduces your risks in future pregnancies as well as improving your long-term health.
Crash or fad diets arent suitable during pregnancy or breastfeeding, as they dont contain all the nutrients you and your baby need.
Your body might look different after having children. Some women become frustrated and wonder how to lose belly fat. But whether you lose weight or not, enjoy a healthy lifestyle and be proud of what your body has achieved.
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Can You Lose Weight While Pregnant
Generally speaking, no mom-to-be should intentionally try to lose weight once she knows shes pregnant, even if shes overweight. Research shows that losing weight on purpose can increase the risk of complications for baby, and restricting calories and nutrients can be harmful to you and your developing child, says Pooja Shah, MD, an ob-gyn and regional medical director for Banner Medical Group AZ East.
If you are obese, your doctor will offer you advice on how to avoid possible complications. For weight gain during pregnancy, we base our recommendations on what moms pre-pregnancy BMI is, Kimberly Henderson, DO, an ob-gyn at Health Quest Medical Practice, with offices in Rhinebeck and Kingston, New York. Women who are very obesea BMI of over 40may not gain any weight in their pregnancy.
Still, its possible for you to find yourself losing weight while pregnant, even if its not intentional. Read on to learn what might be causing you to drop those pounds and what you should do about it.
Understand Your Calorie Requirement
As mentioned in the above table, all pregnant women dont need to gain the same amount of weight. So, you need to know your calorie requirements. Your calorie requirement increases in the second and third trimester.
For women with normal weight, the average caloric intake should increase by around 300kcal/ day during pregnancy. However, it varies depending on your BMI among other things. Therefore, talk to your doctor to understand your specific needs .
Dont follow low-calorie diets or rigorous weight loss regimes like intermittent fasting.
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Risks Of Gaining Too Much Weight
Women who gain extra weight during pregnancy are more likely to have
- Gestational diabetes and high blood pressure
- Backaches, leg pain and varicose veins
- A cesarean section or other problems with delivery due to a larger than normal baby
- Trouble returning to pre-pregnancy weight
- Long term health problems from obesity
Did You Know? Gaining too much weight during pregnancy increases your babys risk of being overweight during childhood?
Distribution Of Weight During Pregnancy
If you are wondering where does all that pregnancy weight go, then you are not alone asking this question. The amount of weight gained is fairly distributed. Heres a breakdown of the weight you gain during pregnancy.
- The baby weighs around 3 to 3.5 kg by the end of the pregnancy.
- The placenta and amniotic fluid make up about 1.5 kg.
- An enlarged uterus and engorged breasts can mean an additional 2 kg.
- Bodily fluids and blood can weigh up to 4 kgs, while fat and other nutrients constitute nearly 3 kgs. So the total weight gained could be anywhere between 10 to 15 kilos.
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Why Should I Exercise During Pregnancy
Staying active during pregnancy will help you to slow weight gain and have a healthier pregnancy and delivery. Exercise is safe for most pregnant women. Talk to your health care provider to find out what type of physical activity is safe for you.
- Benefits of exercise during pregnancy
- Slows weight gain
Did You Know? Women who exercise during pregnancy may have shorter labors and easier deliveries.
When Should I Worry About Weight Loss During Pregnancy
A small amount of weight loss probably isnt worrisome.
However, any significant amount of weight loss during pregnancy can be concerning and I would recommend speaking with your healthcare provider as soon as possible.
Your provider will have you do a growth ultrasound to measure how your baby is growing. If your baby is not growing appropriately, then you will need much closer follow-up.
In addition, if you begin to develop bloating accompanied with changes in your bowel movements, you may have a malabsorptive disease that will require a workup.
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Can You Follow A Weight
Pregnant women must not undertake crash diets or decrease their calorie intake in pregnancy. A weight-loss diet may cause cellular alterations in the unborn child and make him prone to obesity in future. A healthy diet, comprising fibre-rich foods and whole grains, is important during pregnancy. The doctor will advise the required dietary changes to lead a healthy lifestyle. Eat vegetables, fruits and lean proteins. Dont consume sugary or processed foods and liquid calories.
Effects Of Weight Loss On The Mother
Losing too much weight can prove counter-effective and can have a negative impact on the well-being of you and your child. Unhealthy weight loss, which mainly occurs due to morning sickness or loss of appetite can start in the first trimester of pregnancy and may last up until the end of the first trimester. Weight loss during pregnancy is not always healthy as it might affect the health of the pregnant woman and her baby. Mentioned below are some complications of weight loss during pregnancy:
- The baby may be born underweight because of lack of nutrition.
- There is an increased chance of a miscarriage in the first trimester due to anorexia.
- Lower levels of amniotic fluid.
- The baby will have a poor cognitive function.
- You might feel tired all the time and will be prone to infections.
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How Much Weight Can You Safely Lose During Pregnancy
There is no actual defined amount of weight loss that is safe to lose in pregnancy.
You must take into consideration how much you weighed prior to pregnancy and how much you currently weigh.
If your body mass index was normal or below normal, I would strongly advise against losing weight. In fact if your BMI was below normal you actually need to gain more weight .
If your BMI prior to pregnancy was greater than 30, a modest amount of weight loss, might not have negative consequences.
Be sure to follow with your healthcare provider closely if you do lose some weight.
According to the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology, if your BMI is > 30 you may not need to gain any weight during your pregnancy, however you will need to be closely followed by your doctor to monitor the growth and development of your baby via sonogram.
How Much Weight Should People Gain
The expected weight gain during pregnancy will depend on a womans weight before pregnancy and how many babies she is expecting. A woman who is pregnant with twins will gain more weight during pregnancy than she would if she were pregnant with one baby.
Women can use their starting body mass index to determine how much weight they should expect to gain. Use an online BMI calculator to work out your BMI here.
Below is a table of how much weight a woman should gain during pregnancy based on her pre-pregnancy BMI.
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Include Your Baby In Your Workouts
You can include your little one in many types of exercises after giving birth, which will help you bond and will make it easier for you to find the time to exercise. Try taking a walk along with their stroller or consider enrolling in mommy-and-me yoga, swimming, or aerobics classes.
These classes can also be a great place to meet other new moms who are also trying to lose baby fat!
Once your doctor gives you the green light, you can try these exercises after delivery for a flat stomach and overall weight loss:
- Pelvic tilts
If you were active before and during pregnancy, your doctor might recommend waiting a month before doing more intensive workouts, such as crossfit, cycling, running, and high intensity interval training . You can also try modified exercises that include holding your baby for a great post pregnancy ab workout.
What Exactly Is Overweight/’obesity’ During Pregnancy
Your BMI is a measure that uses your height and weight to work out if your weight is in a healthy range. For pregnant women your BMI calculation will be based on your weight before pregnancy.
Once you work out your BMI, this is the scale:
- Less than 18.5 = underweight
- 18.5 to 24.9 = healthy weight
- 25 to 29.9 = overweight
- 30 to 39.9 = obese
- 40 = severely obese
At your first antenatal visit, called the booking appointment, your midwife may measure your height and weigh you to work out your BMI.
Try not to be offended if anyone involved with your health care uses the words ‘overweight’ or ‘obese’ to describe your weight. A lot of women don’t like these terms, but nobody is judging you. The medical experts looking after you during pregnancy may need to use them so they can make sure you have the best advice and support to help you have a healthy pregnancy. Someone who is categorised as obese, for example, will get extra advice and care.
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Know How Much Weight You Need To Gain
Being overweight during pregnancy can sometimes change the focus to only losing weight. But the fact is, youll still gain some weight, and it is important to know how much a healthy amount of is. After all, there is a human growing inside of you!
Follow these pregnancy weight gain guidelines from the , based on your weight before you became pregnant:
- obese : gain 11 to 20 pounds
- BMI between 25 and 29.9: 15 to 25 pounds
- normal weight : can gain between 25 and 35 pounds
Does Breastfeeding Help You Lose Weight
Breastfeeding has been shown to help new mothers lose weight. In order to produce milk, your body spends around 300-500 extra calories each day.
As long as youre eating a healthy diet, this energy expense will help you create the calorie deficit that is necessary to lose weight after giving birth. While you breastfeed, youre also releasing hormones thatll help shrink your post-baby uterus, which can flatten your belly faster.
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What Happens If You Lose Weight During Pregnancy
So, are there any negative effects of losing weight during pregnancy?
The most common risks associated with weight loss in pregnancy include:
- a small for gestational age infant
- and possible preterm delivery
These findings occur in the second and third trimester.
With that said, unintentional weight loss during the first trimester is not uncommon.
This is due to morning sickness, which often happens at any time day during the first 13 weeks. It is accompanied by nausea and vomiting and sometimes weight loss due to the inability to eat or drink.
This weight loss doesnt usually lead to long term issue unless you develop a condition called hyperemesis gravidarum.
The good news is, morning sickness usually resolves by the 2nd trimester,
You Had A Baby Now What
After giving birth, the last thing that’s likely on a new mom’s mind is going on a diet. And according to Cheryl Lovelady, a professor of nutrition at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, that’s just fine.
“I tell moms, ‘The first month, don’t worry about your weight,'” Lovelady said.
Of course, a woman will immediately lose some of the pregnancy weight simply namely, the weight of the baby, the placenta and the amniotic fluid.
And over the next few weeks, a woman can also expect to lose the weight of the extra fluid in her body that built up during pregnancy. After the fluid is gone, what remains is the extra fat that the woman added during pregnancy.
Women should be able to lose their extra weight by six months after they give birth, Lovelady said.
“We recommend a weight loss of approximately 1 pound per week,” Lovelady told Live Science. However, in reality, women will likely lose more weight at the beginning, and the weight loss will slow as they get closer to their goals, she said. By the end, it may be only 1 pound per month, but that weight loss will be a pound of fat, as opposed to fluid, she added.
Nicklas added that the current research suggests that women who don’t lose their weight within this time period are at greater risk of retaining the weight for the long term.
It’s also important for a woman to lose the weight before getting pregnant again, experts say.
“But the research shows us that it is possible,” she added.
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Managing Your Weight Gain During Pregnancy
Most women should gain somewhere between 25 and 35 pounds during pregnancy. Most will gain 2 to 4 pounds during the first trimester, and then 1 pound a week for the rest of the pregnancy. The amount of weight gain depends on your situation.
- Overweight women need to gain less .
- Underweight women will need to gain more .
- You should gain more weight if you are having more than 1 baby. Women having twins need to gain 37 to 54 pounds .
A balanced, nutrient-rich diet, along with exercise, is the basis for a healthy pregnancy. For most pregnant women, the right amount of calories is:
- 1,800 calories per day in the 1st trimester
- 2,200 calories per day in the 2nd trimester
- 2,400 calories per day in the 3rd trimester