Sadly, for most mothers caring for a new baby, they realize they aren’t going to magically lose baby weight and regain their former figure immediately. So it can be tempting – particularly when there’s little time to prepare healthy meals – to skip mealtimes altogether in the hope of losing some weight fast.
But after all the demands that pregnancy has placed on your body, it’s vital to make sure that you get enough nutrients to stay healthy and have enough energy to look after yourself and your baby.
Now is NOT the time to embark on a crash diet!
If you are breastfeeding, it’s better to wait until your baby is at least two months old before you even think about cutting calories. You need to make sure that baby is getting the vitamins and nutrients needed from breast milk and drastically decreasing your calorie intake can also decrease your milk supply.
The following diets are NOT recommended while breast feeding – or immediately after giving birth:
o Low carb diets
o Weight loss tablets
o Liquid diets
And strict diets such as fruit and veg only’ are out because your body needs protein and lean meat to supply you with lots of energy for the tiring months ahead. So how is a new mum supposed to lose baby weight and get her body back to normal when she needs to eat well and can’t hit the gym for at least 6-10 weeks?
Firstly – and most importantly – you need to set realistic targets. Often, new mums complain that diets aren’t working when in reality they are just expecting too much too soon!
Okay, we all know how difficult it is when you’re trying to lose weight and nothing seems to work. Yes, this can be very discouraging, especially if you feel uncomfortable and can’t wait to lose your baby pouch. But you need to eat sensibly so that you can look after your baby properly.
Most dietitians agree that to regain your pre-pregnancy state, you need to give yourself around a year. But many new mothers are so anxious to get their figure back that they embark on strict calorie controlled diets. These are very difficult to stick to – and often result in binge eating later in the day to satisfy their appetite. There are many reasons why celebrity or fad diets fail – but often, the blame doesn’t lie with the diet itself. So you need to be prepared for this type of problem – and you need to accept that there will always be the occasional “bad day” when you are so exhausted that you NEED to curl up on the sofa with a bar of your favorite chocolate.
But you’ll find it much easier to avoid putting on even more extra weight by keeping danger foods out of the house and asking friends to support you by bringing healthy snacks – or different treats such as a favorite magazine or some relaxing bath oil!