Are you worried you won’t be able to lose the weight you gain during pregnancy? The following steps can help you lose the baby weight, fast!
It may sound glorious to be able to eat whatever and whenever, but be aware, you will regret it if you do. Appropriate weight gain for pregnancy differs for everyone, depending on your health status prior to baby. For those who begin their pregnancy at a healthy weight, the recommended gain is 25-35 pounds. (Shorter women should strive to stay on the lower end and taller women on the upper.) Overweight women should aim to gain between 15-25 pounds and underweight women may gain up to 40. Please discuss your weight gain goals with your healthcare provider.
Breastfeed for as long as you can
On average, it costs the body 500 calories to produce milk for a 0-6 month old baby and even more as the babe gets older. For someone 120 pounds, that is equivalent to running 5.5mph for an hour a day! Would you rather run an hour a day, every day or breastfeed? (Think that’s a no brainer!) That means you either get to eat more food or bank those burned calories to earn a whole lot of weight loss.
Muscle makes up about 20% of your daily energy expenditure vs. fat at 5%. Though not a significant portion of calories burned come from muscle (the majority comes from your brain, heart, liver and kidneys), each little bit counts! Not to mention, muscle looks divine on just about anyone! Not enough time to go to the gym? Get a great workout at home! Do a workout video; 30 minutes a couple times a week (in conjunction with breastfeeding) will make the pounds melt off.
Eat on a schedule
This is especially important if you are breastfeeding. Babies thrive on predictability; this one little secret helps in getting your baby to sleep through the night. Adults are no different than babes! Our bodies love structure and the confidence that it will receive what it needs to thrive. Hormones have a large play in this game, and Dr. Oz actually painted a great picture when he said, “When you eat meals at different times rather than on a regular schedule, your body goes into stress mode. For example, when you eat breakfast at 7 a.m. one morning and 11 a.m. the next, your body becomes confused about where its next meal is coming from. This causes the secretion of the stress hormone cortisol. High levels of cortisol lead to spikes in insulin, which causes inflammation and can increase the risk of many cancers.” And in addition to cancer and a multitude of other morbidities, the hormone cortisol is directly linked to abdominal obesity…exactly what you are trying to combat.
Eat 6 small meals a day
Everyone has heard the advice to eat 6 small meals a day, and for most, this is true.
Avoiding overeating allows the body to use what it needs at that particular moment to fuel cells and not store the excess as fat.
Stop eating before you feel “sooo full”, by then, its already too late… that food, whether it be carbohydrate, protein or fat will be metabolized and stored for later use. Now, 6 isn’t a magic number, it just works well…breakfast, snack. Lunch, snack. Dinner snack. And don’t believe the adage to avoid eating after 6pm, it won’t cause weight gain. Just remember, small is the key word here, no overeating!
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