Breastfeeding and Diet – Can You Diet While Breastfeeding?

Every woman has a different relationship with her body and this is even more so after having children when our bodies change during and post birth.

And after we have our children some mums are ready and want to lose pregnancy weight a few months after the birth whilst many others don’t even think about losing weight for more than a year after their baby is born (and many don’t think about for many years later).

The point to note is that there is no right or wrong time to start thinking about losing weight – it is all about when it is feels right for each individually and when you feel 100% emotionally and physically ready to do so and no one should ever feel pressured to lose weight.

But what about if you are breastfeeding and want to start a losing pregnancy weight can you lose weight in a safe way?

The good news is that YES it is possible to lose weight when breastfeeding providing you follow a breastfeeding safe diet ” such as the Lose Baby Weight plans. This means following a diet plan that is based on healthy eating principles and light exercise and is free from caffeine and any weight loss accelerants.

It is also very important not to follow any extreme diets which advise cutting out food groups or eating too much of one group ” for example a diet that tells you to only eat protein each time you eat.

Top Tips For Breastfeeding & Losing Weight

1) Aim for a safe and sustainable 500g ” 1kg a week. Mum’s often want to lose their baby weight immediately after birth ” however a point that needs to be noted is that toxins are stored in our fat cells so if the weight is lost too quickly via dramatic weight loss diets (i.e losing 5kg in a wek) then those toxins are released into the body and can pass through the milk to the baby. So the message is to aim for slow and steady weight loss so there is no dramatic release of the toxins and so you and your baby stay healthy.

2) Do not restrict your calories. Your body uses approximately 500 calories a day to create milk so you do need extra calories when breastfeeding

3) It is also very important to note that focusing on being healthy is important at this time and we believe health and nutrition should come first when breastfeeding and weight loss is often then a by product of this. A point to note is that for mothers eating a normal Australian diet, the most common nutrients of concern are iodine, iron and calcium as the amounts recommended for pregnant and breastfeeding mothers are hard to obtain from a normal Australian diet.

4) There is no one size fits all calorie need each day ” it depends on your own individual needs and what your individual BMR is.

5) Consume lots of nutrients from all food groups to support your milk supply ” aim for lean proteins, dairy, vegetables, fruit, wholegrains, omega 3’s, eggs, water and eat regular snacks in between meals.

6) Avoid processed foods and sugary snacks which are devoid of nutrients and will send your blood sugar and cravings up and down.

7) Try light and gentle exercise and fit in what you can when you can. Don’t put pressure on yourself to do too much.

8) Avoid any kind of ‘diet pill’ as most contain products that could make your baby sick such as phentermine, aloe vera, caffeine, kelp, high doses of chromium and phenylpropanolamine.

 
Last Updated: February 21, 2015

CONTRIBUTOR

BellyBelly.com.au


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