Thursday, April 12, 2018

5 Essential Tips for Getting Rid of Post-Pregnancy Weight

Pregnant at age 38 with Samuel, my fifth child and third son
The average woman gains 30 to 40 pounds while pregnant, and many struggle to shed the extra pounds after. While losing weight after pregnancy can be a challenge, there are few easy and safe ways any new mother can burn excess fat. Here are five essential tips for getting rid of postpartum weight.

Hydration


When you’re dehydrated, you’re more likely to be tired and weak. This is a particular problem for breastfeeding mothers who fail to drink the extra liter or two they need to make up for their baby’s daily intake. The solution is to drink a cup of water or two every time you breastfeed. If you’re not breastfeeding, you still probably need to drink more water and other hydrating drinks. And you’ll need to drink more water and juice to offset dehydrating beverages like coffee many parents use to get going in the morning, especially if you’re up all night. If you’re drinking milk to get enough calcium, choose low-fat dairy over whole milk.

Breastfeeding


Breastfeeding will actually help you lose weight, but this is only if you’re consuming the right number of calories. If you try to lose weight too quickly, your body will shut off your milk supply. Eat too many calories on the theory that you’re eating for two, and you’ll gain weight. Instead, find out how many calories you should be consuming given your weight and child’s demands and stay in that ballpark. Note that even if you aren’t breastfeeding, you still shouldn’t go on a crash diet or fad diet.

Get Enough Sleep


When you’re sleep deprived, your body tries to make up for it by craving fat, sugar, and carbohydrates. If you went to bed at 10 and got up at six before you had kids, you received around eight hours of sleep. Throw in a couple of late night feedings, and you’ve had close to six or seven hours of highly interrupted sleep. Your body will try to maintain your energy level by making you want high-calorie foods, and you’ll be less able and willing to exercise, too. The solution for parents is to go to bed an hour earlier at a minimum so that you’re getting enough sleep.

Medication


While exercise, proper nutrition, and healthy sleep habits can help, there are cases when you need a little help. If you aren’t breastfeeding, then weight loss medications become a safe solution.

For example, an article that was published on Capital OTC featured a story on Contrave, a drug similar to Osymia, which was approved by the FDA. What separates Contrave is the fact that it doesn’t pose the same risks for heart problems as other diet drugs. Weight loss pills work in a variety of ways, and some may be more appropriate for postpartum women than others, so you should consult a doctor and see what option is the best for you.

Conclusion


While the same advice for losing weight in general typically still applies after you’ve had a baby, there are some limitations, especially if you’re breastfeeding. So, make sure you follow the tips in this article and consult a physician to make sure that your body is ready.

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