Healthy Weight Management for New Moms

Monday, June 22, 2015

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Some women love being pregnant; others have a really hard time with it. Either way, returning to a healthy weight after you deliver your baby may lower your chances of diabetes, heart disease, and other weight-related problems.

Wait until your six-week checkup before trying to slim down. If you are breastfeeding, wait until your baby is at least two months old. By cutting about 500 calories a day from your diet, you can lose about a pound and a half a week.

Breastfeeding may make it easier for you to lose weight because your body burns extra energy to produce milk. Your calorie needs when breastfeeding depend on how much body fat you have and how active you are.

Your healthcare provider can tell you how many calories you need each day, whether you are breastfeeding or not. Try not to drop below the minimum number of calories you need. Keep eating well, and eat foods from all of the food groups. With Daily Food Plan for Moms, you can create a personalized plan to help you stay healthy and fit.

Remember, your body has been through a lot in giving birth and needs time to recover. If you had gestational diabetes, you probably gained extra weight during pregnancy. Give your body time to adjust and return to a non-pregnant condition. Don't expect a flat belly after your delivery. Check out Body Image: Learning to Love the New You for more ways to adjust to your post-pregnancy body. 

When you’re ready to start becoming physically active, check with your health care provider and then slowly get used to a routine of regular, moderate-intensity physical activity, like a daily walk. 

Check out 3 Things to Keep in Mind When Setting Goals & Expectations, and for more information about healthy eating for new moms, see Your Nutritional Needs. Try to focus on being healthy, rather than cutting calories or eating less.

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