5 Things Moms Should Know to Help Lose Baby Weight
Almost every woman who has given birth has faced the dilemma of coping with "baby weight" - the extra pounds still remaining on your body days, weeks, months, or even years after you've had a child. For some women, shedding the baby weight is easy. For others, the pounds packed on during pregnancy may stick around for life. We've all been told that we can lose postpartum pounds by dieting, exercising, and breastfeeding, but several unlikely tips can also prove useful. Here are some surprising ways that you can help yourself lose the baby-weight.
In addition to losing fluid (and an eight-pound baby) during childbirth, You also burn off several pounds of fat during labor. Vaginal childbirth, especially when unmedicated, forces the body to work hard and is roughly equivalent to running a marathon. Calories burned during labor and recovery help to burn your body's extra fat reserves.
Next up: Catch More Zzzzzzzz
If only it were that easy! Moms with newborns rarely get anywhere near the amount of sleep they need, especially if they also have other children. However, a good amount of sleep is - like food and fresh air - absolutely essential for your health in every way. Sufficient sleep is associated with much healthier eating patterns, more exercise, and improved weight loss. Shed the pounds by taking a nap every time you get a chance.
Next up: Don't Worry, Be Happy
One surprising tip for losing baby weight is to effectively treat and prevent postpartum mental health disorders. Postpartum depression is extremely common and tends to prevent the loss of baby-weight (or even to add on extra pounds), since depression can cause significant changes in appetite. Exercise, eat right, sleep well, and maintain a good support network to prevent postpartum depression. If those measures aren't cutting it, seek professional help. Your mind and body will both benefit.
Next Up: Drink Water.
After losing massive amounts of fluid during childbirth, then producing large amounts of breast milk, your postpartum body requires all the water it can possibly get. In the first few weeks after having my daughter, I was constantly thirsty and had to drink a gallon and a half per day to meet my body's needs. This not only prevents dehydration, but can also significantly help with postpartum weight loss. Many studies have shown that overweight women benefit from drinking more water; it suppresses the appetite and promotes fat-burning.
Next Up: Classic Advice.
For more information on Tanya, check out Tanya's website or tweet her @tanya4fitness.
For more weight loss tips, check out:
Get-in-shape secrets from around the world.
How to lose weight by standing still.
Dr. Oz's 20-minute, no-dumbbell workout.