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Losing Weight While Breastfeeding/ Nursing

Updated on October 30, 2012

Losing weight while breast feeding poses a number of concerns for new mothers. On the one hand, you're used to your pre-pregnancy weight and don't feel comfortable with the extra pounds that have remained on your body since the delivery. On the other hand, you want to make sure that you engage in proper weight loss since everything that's going in to your body can be transferred to the baby show is breast-feeding from you. Although these are definitely concerns that you need to keep in mind while losing weight after a pregnancy, you should know that as long as you engage in a healthy weight loss program using common sense, your baby should be fine. You can get back to your normal weight and your baby will still get the needed nutrients form your breast milk.

Here are some things that you should know about losing weight while breast feeding:

  • Give yourself a little bit of time after the delivery. Your body just went through a really traumatic experience and it needs time to just chill out and heal before you start trying to diet. Eat normally and with a mind towards your health, but don't worry too much about your diet in the first month or two after the delivery. Just enjoy that new baby and get your body back to a good place!
  • Plan on gradual weight loss. There's nothing healthy about losing weight quickly so don't try to do it. Even though you want instant gratification with your diet, it's more important to be sensible and lose the weight slowly but steadily.
  • Pay attention to when you are hungry. New mothers sometimes eat mindlessly, grabbing bites when they can. Don't do this. Instead, eat normal meals at times when you are actually hungry.
  • Don't mistake a need for sleep for a need for food. You don't sleep much with a newborn in the house. Sometimes your body thinks it needs food when it really needs rest, so make sure that you're managing to get what you need instead of eating to make up for it.
  • Incorporate the baby into exercise. Talk the baby out in the stroller every day - or even better, twice per day - for a nice walk. It's good for both of you to get outside and it gets you on the exercise path! You can even put the baby in a sling and carry him or her to gain extra strength from the exercise.
  • Avoid all diet pills. This should be obvious but it bears saying. They're bad for you and they're terrible for your baby so be sensible about them.
  • Be kind to yourself. You are going to spend the rest of your life setting an example for this newborn and now is the time to start. Treat yourself like you would treat your child if she was all grown up and trying to lose weight.

Losing weight while breastfeeding isn't bad for your baby. In fact, done properly, it can improve your health and therefore make you a more capable parent. Just make sure that you have realistic expectations, make common sense choices about your diet and exercise routine and avoid anything rash.


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  • Americannj profile image

    Americannj 7 years ago

    Our baby hated the stroller. He cried everytime he went into the stroller right from the beginning. After about two months of struggling to get him to like the stroller, we went changed from the "bed" type stroller to the "seat" type stroller. We had to prop him and make sure he was well supported and comfortable. But after that, he loved his stroller. Why the difference? Our baby wanted to see!

  • Polly C profile image

    Polly C 8 years ago from UK

    Also, I believe breastfeeding itself helps you to get back to your pre-pregnancy weight more quickly, as opposed to bottle feeding.

  • Silverlining profile image

    Tracy Behr 8 years ago from Port Elizabeth

    Great hub! Good info… 5 *

    My hub is on which a good diet for breastfeeding, which foods to avoid etc.

  • nadejshda profile image

    nadejshda 8 years ago

    Thanks for your advice. I've always been discouraged about losing weight while I'm nursing & I love to nurse. This gives me some hope. Thanks!

  • belief713 profile image

    belief713 9 years ago from NJ

    Thanks for sharing. Our baby is almost 3 months old and I'm ready to get rid of these baby pounds! But I want to do it safely. Your hub gives a lot of good info and encouragement and links to great sites. Thanks!