Just because you had dreams of getting into your favorite jeans right after you delivered doesn’t mean it’s going to happen. Sure, you may know a neighbor or read about some celebrity who is walking around in her pre-pregnancy bod in just a mere two or four weeks, but that is not the norm. Gradual weight loss is. In fact, it might not be good for your baby if you lose weight too fast.
When the celebrities lose weight quickly after giving birth, it’s usually because they have a personal trainer, a personal chef and super motivation and self-control so that they can look good on the red carpet. Most regular moms don’t have all those luxuries or that lifestyle.
Not Losing Weight
Carrying around an extra 30 lbs or so is normal, although it can be difficult to come to terms with. If you are not losing, or if you are even gaining weight after you deliver, it may be because you are breastfeeding and are hungrier. And if you are breastfeeding, you should not be on a diet anyway because you could deprive your baby of her nutrition. On the plus side for breastfeeding, it can actually help you lose weight because making breast milk burns calories. Your weight gain may also be because it takes some women a few years to lose all the weight they gained during their pregnancy.
Maybe you had complications with your pregnancy, making you feel weak after delivery. Sometimes a common disease, postpartum inflammation of the thyroid gland, which can occur soon after delivery, causes weight struggles. Also, some medications you take may make it difficult for you to shed pounds. Talk to your doctor if you think a complication applies to you. She may recommend a dietitian that can help you lose weight and keep it off.
The choices you make in the first six months after delivery are critical for your ultimate weight loss, according to Dr. Judith Reichman of the “Today” show. If you are unhappy with your weight gain post-pregnancy, shoot for losing 1 to 2 lbs a week, not any more. This is not a good time to go on some fad diet, depriving yourself of proper nutrients. The most effective way to lose weight after pregnancy, besides eating healthy foods, is to exercise. You may be tired from caring for your baby, but if you want to shed pounds, you should exercise every day, even if it’s just walking. Most babies find it great fun to be included in your exercise program, whether it’s a walk in the stroller, a jog in a jogging stroller or a ride in a bike trailer. You should be able to resume exercise a few days after delivery, especially if you exercised during your pregnancy. If you had a C-section, discuss when you can exercise again with your doctor.
Foods you should eat after pregnancy are fruits, vegetables, whole grains, low-fat dairy products, beans and lean meats. Keep junk food out of the house. Many people have success by switching from three large meals a day to five or six smaller ones. This keeps your energy level up throughout the day and keeps the hunger pangs at bay. The worst thing you can do is to skip meals in an effort to lose weight because you will probably be starving when you do eat and, subsequently, overeat.