Losing weight after pregnancy – The ten best tips
It is natural and also very important to gain weight during pregnancy. The first few kilos disappear automatically when you give birth, and what then remains of excess weight often bothers new mothers.
This article will get the best tips for losing weight after pregnancy. You will find out which weight-loss strategies you can easily integrate into the stressful everyday life of babies. We’ll also look at how you shouldn’t lose weight.
You don’t have to have the perfect body again a few weeks after birth. Take your time; your body has just done a lot after all. With our tips, you can certainly lose the baby pounds again – without any stress.
1) Drink enough
You lose a lot of fluids, especially when you are breastfeeding. So make sure you always drink enough. Sufficient fluid intake is also very beneficial for weight loss. Thirst is often mistaken for hunger, which in turn causes you to consume unnecessary calories.
You should drink at least around 30 milliliters per kilogram of ideal weight. At 70 kilograms, that would be around 2.1 liters. But after the pregnancy, it can be more. This is especially true if you’re breastfeeding, exercising a lot, or being hot outside. An additional requirement of around 0.5 liters of liquid per day is recommended.
Suitable drinks are water, mineral water, and unsweetened herbal and fruit teas. There are also special nursing teas, and however, their effectiveness has not been scientifically proven. Coffee and black, green, and white tea are not suitable for breastfeeding, and this is due to the caffeine it contains.
If you can’t manage to drink enough, try the following tips:
Drink a glass of water each time you breastfeed:
Always have a glass of water ready before breastfeeding and drink it afterward. So don’t forget to drink.
- Set a drinking goal:
It is best to prepare a thermos flask of tea or a large bottle of water first thing in the morning and set yourself the goal of having drunk it by midday. Then prepare something to drink for the second half of the day. So you can see how much you’ve already drunk. In addition, the drink is always available quickly.
- Always take a water bottle with you:
You spend a lot of time outdoors with the baby. So get in the habit of always having a water bottle in the stroller. First, you see them there and are reminded to drink. Second, there’s always something there when you’re thirsty.
2) Eat high fiber foods
When losing weight, it is essential that you can eat until you are full. If you are less hungry, you automatically eat less and take in fewer calories.
Dietary fiber fills you up nicely and lasts a long time. In addition, they also promote digestion. But always drink enough if you eat a lot of fiber.
Fiber-rich foods that you should have in your diet:
- Vegetables: Most vegetables are nutrient-dense and fiber-dense but don’t have many calories. So they are incredibly cheap when it comes to losing weight.
- Fruit: Fruit also contains dietary fiber and fills you up nicely, and it’s also full of essential vitamins.
- Whole Grains: Whole grain cereals are very high in fiber. So include whole grain bread, pasta, rice, and oatmeal in your diet.
- Flea seed husks: The husks of psyllium are incredibly high in fiber. Read more about the intake and use it here.
- Legumes: Lentils, chickpeas, beans, and peas contain fiber and essential vitamins and minerals.
3) Silence if possible
Breast milk is the needs-based and best food for your baby. It also has numerous other advantages:
- Breastfeeding strengthens the child’s immune system.
- Breastfeeding promotes regression
- Breastfeeding reduces the risk of postnatal depression.
- Breastfeeding reduces the risk of obesity, sudden infant death, diabetes, and other diseases.
If possible, you should breastfeed. If that doesn’t work for some reason or you don’t want it, that’s fine, and your decision.
However, breastfeeding can also help with weight loss. By breastfeeding, you consume around 500 more calories per day. This means that even if you continue to eat normally, breastfeeding may result in a calorie deficit and automatically losing weight.
This study showed that breastfeeding mothers lost more weight after pregnancy than non-breastfeeding mothers. After six months, the breastfeeding women lost around 1.7 kilograms more. Some other studies showed similar results.
4) Avoid certain foods
Of course, you don’t have to give up everything when you lose weight. However, certain foods are not particularly conducive to weight loss, and these are mainly highly processed foods such as sweets, baked goods, or ready meals.
In addition to a lot of fat, sugar, and salt, such foods also provide many calories. An American cookie from the bakery can easily contain around 400 calories. However, you don’t notice these calories.
Apart from the high-calorie content, the problem with these foods is that they don’t fill you up. If you eat a ready-made pizza with around 800 calories, you will most likely be complete for a much shorter time than with a homemade whole-grain pizza with lots of vegetables. This means that you will soon need food again, and you will be consuming too many calories.
In summary: Heavily processed foods often only provide empty calories, and they can also trigger cravings and binge eating. Therefore, they are among the foods you should avoid when losing weight.
Try to follow the 80/20 rule. You get 80 percent of your calories from unprocessed, fresh, and quality foods, and twenty percent may also be highly processed foods such as sweets. So you don’t run the risk of taking in too many calories in the long run, but you still don’t have to do without everything.
5) Get enough exercise
In addition to a healthy diet, sport or exercise is a cornerstone of sensible weight loss. On the one hand, practice is good for the body and mind, and on the other hand, it increases your calorie consumption.
After the birth, you should give your body time and rest to recover. Excessive exercise is not recommended for the first 8 to 12 weeks. Always discuss your training with your gynecologist and he. He will be able to tell you when your body is ready for more sport again.
Of course, that doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t move after birth; you should. Light pelvic floor training and postnatal gymnastics are generally beneficial, and walks in the fresh air are also suitable for you and the baby.
Give your body the time it needs. Especially after difficult births or cesarean sections, it can sometimes take longer before you can do sports to the full extent again. However, gentle movement is possible at any time. Don’t despair; you can also lose weight by going for a walk.
Tips for exercising after pregnancy:
- See sport as time for yourself:
Sometimes you need a break from being a mom. You may have the option of having your partner, parents, or friends watch your baby while you exercise. This gives you some time for yourself, and you can concentrate on your body. Then you will also be much calmer and more resilient in everyday life.
- Include your baby in training:
If you don’t have the opportunity to give your baby away for a short time, include it in your training. There are numerous mom-baby workouts online that are effective for moms but can also be fun for babies. Besides, it’s like that with you all the time. Jogging or brisk walks with the stroller is also an option for an effective workout with a baby. However, always make sure that the exercises are not dangerous for you or your child.
- Pay attention to suitable clothing:
A good sports bra is worth its weight in gold after pregnancy. Especially when you are breastfeeding, you need a sports bra with a lot of support.
- Take good care of your body :
If you feel pain during exercises, it is better to stop immediately. Feel into your body what is already possible and what is not yet.
6) No crash diet
Many mothers feel that they need to shed excess pounds as soon as possible after pregnancy. But that’s neither true nor particularly good for your body. Especially if you are breastfeeding your baby, you should avoid a crash diet.
With crash diets, you lose weight quickly, but you are undersupplied with nutrients and energy. When breastfeeding, you should give your baby plenty of nutrients. If you don’t eat enough yourself, the baby will also lack essential nutrients.
But even if you are not breastfeeding, you should refrain from highly low-calorie diets. You will not primarily lose fat with them but valuable muscle mass. But that’s precisely what makes you look tight. In addition, you will be weak and tired due to the low energy supply, which is certainly not the best combination in your new everyday life.
So it’s best to stay away from all diets that promise rapid weight loss in just a few weeks. This can only be achieved through an extreme calorie deficit, which is generally harmful to the body, especially after pregnancy.
7) Count calories
Counting calories often seems to be a somewhat tedious and time-consuming method. However, hardly anything is that precise. In addition, nowadays, with various apps, it is not too much effort anymore.
In general, counting calories for a while is a good strategy for losing weight. In this way, you get to know your personal needs and feel for food. Once you’ve counted calories for a certain amount of time, you’ll see that it’ll be easier for you to lose weight later without counting them exactly. You can then estimate the food quantities much better.
Once you know your calorie needs, you can easily calculate how many calories you can eat to lose weight healthily. So that the baby gets all the nutrients and enough energy when breastfeeding, your calorie deficit should not be too high. After all, you want to be fit, too, so your daily deficit shouldn’t be more than 500 calories.
You will lose half a kilogram of body fat per week without restricting yourself too much. In addition, you remain fit and efficient.
8) Stock up on healthy snacks
In the stressful everyday life of babies, there is sometimes no time for regular meals. It is all the more important to have snacks at home that you can eat quickly when you need them. These should, of course, be low in calories and healthy if you want to lose weight.
These snack ideas are perfect:
- Vegetable sticks with herb quark
- Cottage Cheese/cottage cheese with herbs
- Crispbread or corn waffles
- Skyr or low-fat quark with berries
- Homemade fruit yoghurt (without sugar)
- Wholemeal bread with low-calorie and healthy spreads
- Healthy Low Carb Protein Banana Bread
- Quinoa bars
Here you will find other snacks in between, which are quickly prepared and fill you up for a long time.
9) Eat enough protein
Protein is an important building material for the body, and it is generally necessary to consume enough protein. However, when it comes to losing weight, a needs-based intake of protein is particularly advantageous.
Protein fills you up very well, which means you eat fewer calories on average. If you eat enough protein, you also prevent valuable muscle mass from being lost during the diet. This will keep you more robust and tighter.
Try to consume around 1.5 grams of protein per kilogram of ideal weight every day. This value is not difficult to achieve with a balanced diet. If you’re not sure which foods are high in protein, this list of high-protein foods may help.
10) Be patient with yourself
Nobody expects you to be rid of all your pregnancy kilos just a few weeks after the birth, and you don’t have to have a perfect body again in no time as specific models and actresses do. They can only achieve this through intense training and a very low-calorie diet – which is anything but healthy.
Remember that you didn’t gain the weight all at once, but over nine months. So it is logical that you will also need to get rid of the kilos about this time. So please don’t set your goals too high, but celebrate small advances and reward yourself for them.
The motto is: Don’t stress! Enjoy the first few weeks and months with your baby, give your body the time it needs, and take good care of yourself.
You lose weight quickly after pregnancy is not suitable for your body or your baby. So really avoid any kind of crash diet and take it slow.
With a balanced diet and sufficient exercise, you will reach your desired weight even without a strict diet. The additional pressure and stress only put you in a bad mood, and it doesn’t have to be.
Take a relaxed approach and use our tips as a guide, and then the pregnancy pounds will also tumble.
Have you already successfully lost weight after pregnancy? If so, do you have any other tips that helped you? Feel free to share them with us and everyone else in the comments.
Of course, if you have any questions, leave a comment!
Kind regards, Nazmul