Lose Baby Weight
Does Breastfeeding Help Weight Loss?
For every mum who tells me that they lost weight whilst breastfeeding there is another mum who tells me that they gained weight whilst breastfeeding. But I find a common experience seems to be that breastfeeding helps to lose some initial weight (as well as shrinking the uterus) for the first few weeks/months then the weight loss stops.
The point which is clear is that every woman is different and every mum's experience with how their body reacts to breastfeeding is different.
When we are breastfeeding the average woman burns around 500 calories a day when breastfeeding but because of the extra energy used by the body to create the breast milk it means we are often hungrier and we need to consume an extra 300-500 calories a day.
Personally I didn't find breastfeeding help me lose my own baby weight and my appetite was pretty high most of the time - especially during the night time feeds!
So for all the mums who find they are gaining weight during breastfeeding but are wanting to try and lose some weight, here are some tips on the best foods to eat for your milk supply, your health and weight loss - just remember to take it really slow and steady and aim for 500g a week and don't put too much pressure on yourself and only focus on weight loss if you feel 100% ready.
Great foods for nutrients when breastfeeding
• Salmon – this is packed full of Omega 3, iodine, vitamin D, protein and B12
• Eggs – eggs are the highest quality protein in our food supply and are full of vitamins and minerals
• Chickpeas – these are a great lean protein and full of iron and fibre
• Avocado – this is high in folate, potassium, vitamin E and magnesium
• Berries – full of vitamin C, folate and fibre and are a great snack or to add into smoothies
• Spinach – full of anti oxidants, vitamins and minerals and is great for yours and your baby’s immune system
• Yoghurt – high in calcium and full of good bacteria.
• Water – drink at least 1.5 – 2 litres of water per day as your body needs it to make the milk so make sure you keep hydrated as you can use up to 1 litre a day just for feeding.
Plus what I found really helpful was having a plate full of veggies and fruit in the fridge cut up into finger foods for me to snack on during the night feed. You can also watch our video below with a leading Australian nutritionist talking about the best foods to eat when breastfeeding
Rhian Allen is Founder of Lose Baby Weight. For more motivation, advice, recipes and exercise plans visit http://www.losebabyweight.com.au and for daily motivation join the Lose Baby Weight Facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/losebabyweight.com.au