Pregnancy weight loss has been discouraged in the past. In fact, doctors became very concerned when women registered a stable weight during pregnancy and a weight loss was cause for real concern.
The 1990 guidelines from the Institute of Medicine suggested that obese women should gain between 15 and 25 pounds over the course of their pregnancy. But retrospective research has shown that babies born to obese women had an increased risk of neural tube defects, congenital heart defects and other serious problems.
Researchers have also found that women who already struggle with their weight dont lose those baby pounds after the child is born which only adds to the already increased health risks they face.
Dr. Raul Artal, professor from the Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology and Womens Health from St. Louis University School of Medicine finalized a study using 96 obese or morbidly obese women with gestational diabetes. The study, published in the June issue of Applied Physiology, Nutrition, and Metabolism found that nearly half of the women who followed a reduced calorie diet and exercise lost weight or remained stable during the pregnancy. Their babies were born without complications and were normal size.
Although this study about pregnancy weight loss in obese women was encouraging the study group was too small to generalize the results of their study. Other physicians did weigh in on the topic and reported that obese women in their practices who either maintained their weight or lost a small amount delivered normal size babies and could more adequately control their diabetes.
Pregnancy weight loss is also a concern of women who carry a normal amount of weight prior to pregnancy as well. In either case, women are often anxious to get back to their pre-pregnancy weight and clothes. But remember it took 9 months to get into the shape you are today getting back wont happen over night.
Another wrench in your pregnancy weight loss plans is the little baby you delivered, the late nights and a whole new set of daily activities and tasks that may cause you to lose weight more slowly than you anticipate.
There are a few tricks to getting back into shape that will help you. First you should know that it will take your body another six months to get back to what you might consider normal. You just got finished growing a new little life, went through the trauma of delivery whether vaginal or c-section and now have to deal with the stresses of night feedings and caring for another human being. Have patience with yourself. Eat well balanced meals with plenty of good nutrition to help your body cope with the stress. Leave out the extra carbohydrates, sweets, sugars, diet drinks and caffeine.
When you feel up to it you can begin exercising again. A great way to exercise is to put the baby in the stroller and go out for a nice long walk. Pushing the stroller and walking up hills will give your quadriceps, hamstrings, calf muscles and heart a great workout.
Dont start exercising too vigorously too though. Check in with your doctor about exercise and when he feels it will be ok to return. Begin too soon or too hard and you damage your own health and delay your return to normal.
Are you breast feeding? Then pregnancy weight loss might be a little easier or so you might think. A new mom who is breast feeding exclusively will produce about 25-29 ounces of breast milk every day. A woman needs to eat an extra 500 calories each day to produce this milk. Dont skimp on these calories or the nutrition because it will be the baby that suffers the consequences. The old wives tale is that the extra calories needed for lactation makes pregnancy weight loss easier. You may lose some weight but youll find that youll maintain some extra fat stores around the back and your middle. This is the extra storage your body needs to produce the milk that is so important to the health of your baby.
The most appropriate time to begin a real effort toward pregnancy weight loss is when the baby is about 3 months old, when your period has returned and the doctor has cleared you for more vigorous exercise. Remember to focus on eating a healthy nutritious diet, get moderate exercise, and lots of rest.Free PDF Health Ebook...