(This page may contain affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases Read my full disclosure.)
Wondering what is the best way to lose weight after pregnancy or how to lose baby weight after pregnancy?
Weight gain is probably the most dreaded thing during pregnancy. Even though you lose quite a bit right off the bat due to the literal baby weight, placenta, and fluid loss, the journey to postpartum weight loss can be a long one.
Every woman goes through it and every woman wants to know how to boost her weight loss after she gives birth. Here you will find some common tips used by moms everywhere to give you a little guidance and encouragement.
About Weight Gain During Pregnancy
Gaining weight during pregnancy is inevitable; there is no way you can avoid it even if you are the tiniest person before pregnancy.
On average, you should only gain about 3-4 pounds during the first trimester and then a pound per week until the baby is born. Of course, this number will look different depending on your body type and pregnancy diet.
Overall, most women SHOULD gain 25-35 pounds, less if you are overweight and more if you are underweight. These numbers are based on a healthy and balanced diet that is followed throughout the entire 40 weeks of pregnancy.
However, we all know that this is not the case. More often than not, women gain more weight than necessary. Even the strictest eater will binge on ice cream and chocolate every once in a while, thanks to raging hormones.
Regardless of your overall weight gain, it is important to know that gaining weight is necessary for healthy baby growth. Poor nutrition can affect the baby’s birth weight and can even cause more medical issues in the future.
Tips for Weight Loss
With that being said, what can you do to try and boost the post-baby weight loss? Try following some of these tips.
1. Prep Your Meals and Snacks
Your baby will keep you very busy. It can be easy to forget to feed yourself in the chaos or to reach for the easiest (and likely unhealthy) thing you can find instead of making yourself something.
One way to avoid this and make healthier choices is to prep your meals and snacks ahead of time.
Use your baby’s feeding times or naps to browse Pinterest and look for some easy meal prep ideas. Then take some time on the weekend, when dad is home to watch the baby, to do some cooking for the week. Package your meals up and put them in the fridge so all you have to do is throw them in the microwave when you need to eat.
Have some cut fruits and veggies handy and pre-portion some healthy nuts – almonds are great! – to have for snacks. You are more likely to eat healthy if you have things that are easy to grab in a hurry.
2. Eat Frequently
Eating frequent small meals per day is better for someone looking to lose weight for a few reasons.
First, it keeps your blood glucose levels more stable. This helps you to avoid energy slumps, keeps you feeling full, and minimizes sugar cravings.
Second, it helps to maintain your metabolism since digestion burns calories.
And of course, eating more frequently just means you avoid becoming hungry. If you are too hungry, you will once again be reaching for that bread or prepackaged snack that is easy rather than taking the time to fix yourself something healthier.
3. Eat Your Fruits and Veggies
In order to lose weight, you need to eat less calories. However, you can’t just cut calories by eating less; that will just leave you constantly feeling hungry.
Instead, you should eat more fruits and veggies. Not only are they rich in vitamins and minerals – including fiber which is essential for digestive health – but they are also very low in calories. You can snack on carrots, tomatoes, and celery sticks all day and still boost your weight loss.
4. Drink Plenty of Water
Sometimes when we feel hungry, we really aren’t. Hunger can often be the body’s way of telling us that we need to drink more water.
Water is essential for every one of the body’s functions and even its survival. You can go much longer without food than you can without water – not saying you should try. Drinking water can also help you to feel full and curb your appetite.
Whenever you feel hungry, try drinking a glass of water first and waiting a few minutes to see if the hunger subsides before reaching for a snack.
What better way is there to boost your calorie burn than exercise?
In order to lose weight, there needs to be a calorie deficit somewhere. This means that the number of calories consumed should be less than the number of calories burned.
Our bodies burn calories naturally through digestion and other bodily functions, but exercise really boosts that number. This is why coupling diet and exercise together gives you the best results when it comes to weight loss.
Breastfeeding is hard work; it sends your body’s calorie burning capabilities into overdrive.
In order to produce milk, your body uses the calories from your food. Many sources claim that the average woman burns an extra 300-500 calories per day while she is breastfeeding.
All of those calories burned can really help you jumpstart your weight loss after the birth of your child.
I can personally attest to this. With my third child, I found that breastfeeding was the easiest way to lose some of that weight quickly.
It wasn’t as quick or easy with my first two children. I struggled a lot with the new experience of breastfeeding and ended up switching to formula due to pain. However, after exclusively breastfeeding my third child for the first six months, I saw over 30 pounds drop off my body.
I still have some toning to do and recently started going to the gym, but I’m excited to see some progress and achieve my goal.
7. Get Your Rest
As a new mother, you may be thinking of getting enough sleep is easier said than done. But there is a lot to be said for a good night’s sleep and your body’s ability to lose weight.
Not getting enough sleep can leave you feeling hungrier than usual due to an imbalance in hormones that help to regulate appetite. Sleep loss also increases fat storage. Your body’s ability to burn carbs decreases which results in the overproduction of insulin and weight gain.
How can you get more sleep as a new mom when you are waking up for feedings multiple times per night?
First, you can enlist the help of your partner for nighttime feedings and diaper changes. If you are breastfeeding, consider pumping some milk for bottle feedings.
You should also take advantage of your baby’s naps, sleeping when they sleep to get a few extra minutes of shuteye throughout the day.
8. Watch Your Calories and Fat Intake
While breastfeeding does burn a lot of calories, you do still need to watch your intake if you want to see progress with weight loss.
Now, you also don’t want to starve your body as that can negatively affect your milk supply. About an extra 200 calories per day will suffice – which is about 1-2 healthy snacks.
You need to be conscious of calorie content as well. You can’t just eat whatever you want to meet your calorie requirement. If you want to lose weight, you need to watch the saturated fats; healthy fats found in foods like eggs and avocados are recommended.
9. Go Easy on Yourself
Weight loss is not easy regardless of whether or not you just had a baby, but postpartum weight loss can be particularly difficult.
With a baby keeping you busy, constantly feeling tired, and the fact that you have to wait at least 6 weeks before getting into an exercise routine, you may begin to feel defeated by your lack of progress.
Don’t be too hard on yourself. You have another little person you need to take care of in addition to yourself. And be patient. It took 9 months for that weight to appear; it’s going to take some time for it to go away.
Ease into your routine and find little things that you can do to help yourself make healthier choices.
How did you end up losing weight after giving birth?