It took 9 months for you to gain the weight and it will take some time for it to come off. The fastest weight loss occurs in the first 6 months after your baby’s birth, but for most women it takes a full year to return to their normal weight. A healthy weight loss of 1-2 pounds per week.
For most women, breastfeeding helps you lose pregnancy wight faster. Why? Breastfeeding burns 400-600 extra calories per day. The longer you breastfeed, the less likely your baby will be overweight as an adult.
Having babies close together does not give your body the time it needs to recover and return to your pre-pregnancy weight. Try to weight at least 18 months before getting pregnant again.
How to lose weight and keep it off:
- Avoid fad diets
- Stock your cupboards with healthy foods
- Eat small frequent meals
- Reduce portion size by using a smaller plate at each meal. You are not “eating for two” adults. Your baby is small, so you only need to eat a little more than before you were pregnant. Your doctor will tell you how much weight gain is right for you.
- Choose low-fate dairy product, lean meats
- Broil, bake, or grill (limit fried and processed foods)
- Eat lots of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains
- Weigh yourself weekly (and at the same time of day)
- Eat only when you are hungry and stop when you are full
- Drink water instead of sugary drinks like soda
- Avoid skipping meals
- Keep a food diary. Use tools found on the Choose My Plate website, such as SuperTracker to help track your diet and physical activity or MyPlate Daily Checklist to choose the right amount of food.
Working out and eating healthy are both important for weight loss. Talk to your health care provider about how soon after delivery you can start exercising. For the best results, work out on all or most days of the week and limit sedentary time.
- Begin with light activity such as walking or swimming
- Breastfeed before you exercise
- Wear a supportive bra
- Include your baby (ex. go on a walk with the baby in a sling or stroller)
- Try to fit exercise into your daily routine. Take the stairs, park further away from the store, walk the kids to school or to the park or run in place while watching TV. Stop exercising if you feel pain, dizzy, have blurred vision or an increase in vaginal bleeding.
Other Weight Loss Tips
Studies have found that women who limit trans fats, watch less than 2 hours of TV a day and exercise for 30 minutes or more a day lose more weight after having a baby than those who do not.