Written by Lisa Allen, MD
Losing weight is one of the biggest hurdles anyone has to face. Moreover, if you have recently had a baby or you are about to have a baby, the weight loss process can even be more tricky.
Every woman’s most dreaded time of their life is when they get pregnant and get fat. However, with enough advice, keeping weight gained during pregnancy to a minimum as well as losing any extra fat after pregnancy can be done with little effort.
The first thing that women who intend to get pregnant (or are already pregnant) need to understand is: Pregnancy weight is not gained in one night and it will never be lost in one night either. With healthy eating habits and exercise routines, the amount gained during pregnancy can be monitored properly and controlled to a minimum level.
The Body Before Pregnancy
Before pregnancy, different women might have different ways of storing body fat. Even their metabolism works in completely different ways. The body works hard to be able to maintain its different organs and keep you alive. The smallest threat sets off the alarm system in the body and it quickly goes into the motion of doing everything possible to help in keeping your entire body alive even as it tries to save enough food nutrients to keep the whole system going.
The Body During Pregnancy
Come pregnancy, and women can almost feel their body go against them from day 1. Every single thing that the body did to protect and sustain itself is now directed to do the same for the growing fetus as well. The woman’s body is no longer given any priority compared to the fetus.
Even if the mother-to-be is not eating in a healthy way, the body grabs every bit of nutrition it can from stored nutrients that are available and provide those to the baby. It is then up to the would-be mother to feed herself well to keep those stored nutrients stacked up for the baby.
Nutrient-rich foods should be consumed to feed the body with enough energy to sustain the pregnancy. There is constantly a need to feed the body with food because of the depleting resources in the woman’s body. During this time, healthy and nutritious food should be administered to be able to feed both mother and child. Drinking plenty of water helps in keeping the calories at check. Women who are pregnant should not diet and follow any fad diets without consulting a doctor.
Women who are pregnant take the chance to eat whatever they like in the hope of feeding the baby well. However, this can only have adverse effects on the woman’s body and does not help the baby in anyway.Fatty foods are a big no for pregnant women. These fatty foods only get stored as more fat in the body which, after pregnancy, will be used for lactation. If the fat is not completely used up during lactation, it then gets stored as permanent fat which becomes very difficult to lose.
Doing mild exercises during pregnancy can help in keeping the body fit and prepare it for the birth of the child. Giving birth to a baby is a very exhausting and risky process that the woman’s body is built for. There are cases where women become completely worn out after the whole delivery process and are not able to cope up with having a small child and feeding schedules as well. However, with regular and proper exercise undertaken before childbirth, this is entirely avoided as the excises render a woman’s body well-equipped to handle the strains of delivery and cope faster with life after a baby.
The Body After Pregnancy
The body, soon after pregnancy, slowly recovers from the whole strain of taking care of a baby for 9 months and, during the initial months after pregnancy, starts to repair itself. The body, while slowly healing itself, supplies the newborn baby with milk by lactation.
After three months or so of lactating, the body slowly begins to lose the weight that it has gained during the period of pregnancy through continued lactation or through any workout regimes that have been undertaken by the new mother.
A dietician will be able to provide a lactating woman with an appropriate diet that will help her provide nutrition to the baby as well as to her own body without necessarily gaining weight.When a good nutritious diet is followed along with some exercises, the body begins to slowly lose all body fat. However, every woman should remember that a diet which a pregnant woman needs is a whole lot different to that which one who is not pregnant needs.
If a woman continues the same diet pattern she followed when she was pregnant even after she has given birth, it can certainly have direct implications on her waistline. Exercises would need to become more extensive and rigid three months following the birth of a child for the new mother to be able to reduce any excess fat as quickly and effectively as possible.
Another tip for a woman to lose her weight easily after pregnancy is to continue breastfeeding the baby for a longer time which is a very easy and natural way for her to lose weight fast.