Losing the post baby kilo’s-the healthy way!
Getting back into your pre pregnancy clothes is something every mum is eager to achieve but in reality it’s not quite as easy for everyday mums as it is for the so many gorgeous celebrities as mums we can get caught up unfairly comparing ourselves too.The average mum doesn’t have a nanny, house cleaner, personal dietician, assistant to run their errands, personal trainer and home yoga teacher visits to help us lose the weight in a scarily short amount of time-nor do we have the extreme media scrutiny which I am sure is a huge amount of pressure for celebrity mums to look good very quickly.
There are plenty of quick fix’s and unhealthy ways to shed weight fast but they nearly always are expensive, leave you feeling hungry, can affect your health and result n you putting the weight back on again!
So keeping this in mind and taking a real life approach we can lose that baby weight in a healthy way as real life mums it is just a matter of making healthy choices, getting active, having a creative outlook, seeking positive support networks and most of all seeing ourselves as important too; something that can be very hard for many mums to do. The best bit about taking care of our own health though is the wonderful role model we become for our children and the energized, vibrant version of ourselves we will be giving our family.
Ten things a new mum can do to lose weight after a baby
(Please note it is essential that all mums discuss with their doctor any and all exercise and diet plans before undertaking them)
- Drink more water. Isn’t this something you always hear? Well it’s for very good reason, staying properly hydrated is so important for good health and drinking plenty of water is great for reducing snacking urges, helping keep bowel movements regular and maintaining a good breast milk supply. Many times when we snack we could actually be just thirsty and drinking things like cordial, soft drinks, milk shakes and iced coffee’s all add so many extra calories into your daily intake along with being generally unhealthy options. If your not a big water fan become one, invest in a water filter jug or device for your tap, carry a water bottle with you everywhere and try and get that recommended 2 litres in each day.
- Increase fibre. Fibre is so important and often an overlooked element in our diets, luckily now though as people are becoming more fibre aware, more and more products and fibre rich foods are becoming available. It is extra important for new mums to have a good fibre intake especially if they have had any trouble ‘down there’ or ‘going’ during pregnancy or after birth. A good fibre intake really helps you body clean itself and boosts weight loss! Look for fibre rich foods when you grocery shop-think wholegrain pasta, brown rice, whole grain bread, spelt flour products and all sorts of healthy grains and pulses you can find at health food stores, whole grain cereals, fresh fruit and vegetables.
- Eat fresh. Try to include as much fresh fruits and vegetables in your diet as possible. For mums on a budget buy what’s in season to keep costs down, source local farmers produce markets and even consider growing some organic fresh edibles at home-it truly is easier than you think!
- Eat natural. Make a conscious effort to steer away from pre-packaged and processed foods. Source some good, easy yet healthy recipes and incorporate these into the family menu. It can be very surprising just how easy and quick and great tasting some healthy meals and snacks are to make at home.
- Change your plate size. It can be too easy to overeat when we are eating off large dinner plates and from deep bowls. Something as simple as adjusting your dinner plate sizing can actually have a big impact on weight loss. By shrinking your portion sizes your calorie and fat intake can drop dramatically and you are still eating the same meals as the rest of the family.
- Avoid heavy dinners. Remember the saying, “Eat like a king for breakfast, prince for lunch and pauper for dinner?” If your planning a heavy meal like lasagne, spaghetti bolognaise or a roast try and have your serve as lunch that day or keep it aside for lunch the following day. Eating something light for dinner or even a small portion is actually good for your body; late night snacking and heavy dinner meals can leave you waking up feeling heavy, slugglish even bloated.
Light dinners can be things like like salad, homemade soup, steamed vegetables, steamed fish or chicken with vegetables, tofu and vegetable even occasionally something like fresh fruit and low fat yogurt.
- Snack healthy. There’s a good chance most of us will snack at some point during the day, When your breastfeeding especially you can feel like your starving constantly so it’s a really good idea to be prepared and when you get a chance put together some ‘grab & go’ snacks because as all mums know sometimes and some days you just don’t have that time or opportunity to make yourself lots of healthy snacks.
Things like pre cut up containers in the fridge with watermelon, rockmelon and grapes or carrots, celery, cucumber and low fat cheese. Small portions of dry trail mix like unsalted walnuts, dried apricots, unflavoured popcorn, and sunflower seeds. Low fat rice crackers and healthy hummus dip or salsa, a tub of low fat yogurt, frozen berries and grapes for hot weather.
- Push that pram! Get out into the lovely fresh air and go for a walk with your baby. Prams are a fantastic exercise tool. Push them through grass verges, up hills and across parks for a real resistance workout. Find some scenic walks in your area, walk to the library, post office, shop or the park.
- Get some social exercise. Join a pram walking group, or do a regular pram walk with another mum, it’s a great way to get out in the fresh air and socialize for bothyou and your baby, plus dong it with someone else can help keep you motivated. There are even now many specifically targeted to mums with babies exercise groups, classes and trainers where you can bring your baby along.
- Relax more. Stress and worry are bad for your health plus when your feeling anxious or stressed you are much more likely to emotional eat which usually leads to weight gain. So what to do? Try to always look at the bigger picture, look for the positives every day, remind yourself about the good things and blessings in your life, don’t stress the small stuff as they say or worry about things you cannot change or might never happen and always tell a good support person how your feeling and about what’s worrying you.
Author of The Pram Diet book, available in bookstores or online through Amazon.