Weight loss after birth : How long does it take ?

Mind & Health
Written by Mind & Health

Your body has just experienced an incredible upheaval that ended with a memorable moment: the birth and the long-awaited birth of your baby. And now, a question haunts you. How long does it take to lose all those pounds gained from the time you lived. Here are the things to know.

After childbirth: when will I regain my body shape ?

After childbirth when will I regain my body shape

When will I regain my weight before pregnancy? This is the question that all future and young moms ask themselves. Amandine was able to put her jeans back just two months after giving birth. Mathilde, despite an average weight gain of around 12 kilograms, struggling to get rid of his two little pounds, yet he had been told that we lose weight faster when we were breastfeeding. In terms of weight and pregnancy, it is impossible to establish rules as each woman is different from a physical, hormonal and genetic point of view.

Not more than 6 kilograms less on the day of childbirth

The loss of kilos begins first with birth, but do not expect miracles. Some women will always tell you that on her way home, the scale was ten pounds lighter. It can happen but it is very rare. On average, on the day of delivery, you will lose between 5 and 8 kilos which include: baby’s weight (on average 3.2 kilos), placenta (between 600 and 800 grams), amniotic fluid (between 800 and grams and 1 kilo) and water.

The weeks after childbirth, you eliminate again

The whole hormonal system changes at delivery, you go from a pregnancy where you make fat reserves to prepare for breastfeeding where you eliminate these fats since now they are used to feed the baby. So there is a natural process of fat reduction, even in case you are not breastfeeding. In addition, your uterus, greatly enlarged by pregnancy, will shrink gradually to the size of an orange. If you have had water retention during pregnancy, it is also likely that all this water will be removed easily and quickly.

Breastfeeding makes you lose weight only under certain conditions

Breastfeeding makes you lose weight

A breastfeeding woman burns more calories than a woman who does not breastfeed. It also restores its fat mass in milk, very rich in lipids. All these mechanisms help to promote weight loss, provided that she breastfeeds over time. Studies have shown that a young mother could lose between 1 and 2 kilograms per month and that, in general, breastfeeding women tended to regain their original weight a little faster than the others. But it can not be said that giving the breast makes you lose weight. You will not lose weight if your diet is not balanced.

Doing a diet after pregnancy is not advisable

After a pregnancy, the body is flat, you must rebuild reserves to be able to feed your baby. If you start a restrictive diet at this time then you risk not only not transmitting the right nutrients to your child, but also weaken your body even more. The best way to lose weight is to eat a balanced diet, that is to consume vegetables and starchy foods at each meal, sufficient protein and limit the sources of saturated fatty acids (cookies, chocolate bars, fried foods) and sugar. When your breastfeeding is finished, you can have a little more restrictive diet but be careful not to generate deficiencies.

Weight loss after birth : physical activity is essential

Weight loss after birth

Proper nutrition alone is not enough to find a toned body. It must be associated with physical activity to increase muscle mass. You may otherwise find your original weight after a few months, but have this ugly feeling of soft and distended body. As soon as your pelvic floor is finished and you have your doctor’s consent, you can start performing the proper exercises to strengthen your lap belt.

How stars lose the pounds of pregnancy in a short time

It’s annoying. Not a week goes by without a new, freshly-born celebrity exhibiting an almost perfect post-pregnancy body. No, people do not have a miracle cure for hunting pounds. They are highly followed and most of the time supervised by a coach during and after their pregnancy. They also have sports habits that allow them to find a toned body very quickly.

Better not to wait too long to lose the pounds of pregnancy

lose the pounds of pregnancy

It is certainly necessary to give oneself time, not to put pressure on oneself, to avoid losing weight too quickly so as not to endanger one’s health. However, it is well known, the longer we wait, the more we risk letting all these rebellious pounds settle permanently. Especially if we go on a second pregnancy. An American study published in 2013 showed that one in two women was 4.5 kg overweight one year after delivery.

Here is a 12-month post-pregnancy diet to get back in shape naturally

With birth, you have already lost 6 or 7kg (weight of the baby, placenta …). Then again 2 or 3kg, when the uterus returns to its normal weight. It only remains to eliminate the 4-5kg that cling. That’s ideal. If you have gained a lot of weight during your pregnancy, things can be more complicated but not impossible. Follow our plan of attack to slim down smoothly and in a lasting way.

Weight loss after birth: how to lose weight effectively

1st month: Reload your batteries after childbirth

“But for now, time is not on the diet,” warns Dr. Laurence Plumey *, nutritionist. First and foremost, you need to recover and adapt to your new young mom’s rhythm, by eating varied and healthy. Eat enough vegetables, they are rich in antioxidants that can better withstand fatigue and stress. And they have a satiating effect, ideal to stall big hunger. At each meal, choose proteins, starchy foods, preferably complete (rice, pasta, bread) that bring energy. And bet on three-four dairy products a day, especially if you are breastfeeding, because your calcium needs are increased by 30%. In case of breastfeeding, it is important to cover your nutritional needs to avoid deficiencies.

In case of insufficient nutrition, your body will draw on its reserves to ensure a good composition of breast milk. With for you, even more fatigue to the key. Also bet on omega 3s that help prevent emotional disorders. Eat one tablespoon of rapeseed oil a day and fatty fish (sardines, salmon, mackerel …) two or three times a week. Drink 2 liters of water a day. And in case of cravings, have a snack in the morning and / or in the afternoon (yoghurt, bread slightly buttered …).

2nd to 4th month: Postpartum weight loss

If you are still tired or continue breastfeeding, do not go on a diet, or you will be frankly exhausted. However, continue to treat your diet to reboost, eliminate a few pounds or at least not to take others. If you’re really motivated, you can start reviewing your diet, without going below 1,500 calories a day. And provided you consume each day starchy energy, 3 to 4 dairy products to not miss calcium and fat (rapeseed oil …) for omega 3.

To cheer you up, know that breastfeeding at least three months allows to tap into the fats that have been stored during pregnancy, including those located in the hips. If you stopped breastfeeding, it is better to wait until diapers return to start a diet, often two months after giving birth. As long as your metabolism is not back to normal, it is more difficult to lose weight.

In any case, before going on a diet, take the time to think. It’s important to know why you’re getting fatter and why you want to lose weight, to get better with the months. If you can not do it alone or have tried many diets before, check with a nutritionist. Then, set yourself an achievable goal. Finding your weight before pregnancy is quite possible unless you were too thin. But we must accept that it takes time. The right pace: lose 1 to 2kg per month.

Better avoid too restrictive or unbalanced diets, high protein type or fasting. You risk being tired and they are difficult to hold over time, with the risk of regrowing even more after. “Bet on a diet that suits you and that preserves your moments of pleasure,” says Laurence Plumey. It is the principle of the method that I developed: to make balanced and varied meals, so as not to be deficient or to be hungry between meals.

For example, in the morning, a 0% natural milk (yogurt or cottage cheese) with a fresh fruit cut into pieces for the sweet note, and 40g of wholemeal bread (2 slices) or 30g of muesli with half skim (first pour the milk into the bowl, then the cereals, it avoids putting too much). At noon, a piece of lean meat (chicken, roast beef, veal, ham …) or fish or eggs. Unlimited vegetables and starchy foods (no more than 70g, the equivalent of 2 tablespoons when cooked) or a slice of bread. For dessert, a dairy and a fruit. Afternoon snack: a dairy or a fruit or a handful of almonds. In the evening, if you wish, a little meat or fish or eggs with vegetables, but not starchy. “Eating light in the evening is the secret of thinness,” says Dr. Laurence Plumey. Take a fruit for dessert.

In total, it’s a 1,200-calorie diet. Add to one meal, a tablespoon of rapeseed oil or nuts, and very little butter on your bread (less than 10g) or a teaspoon of light cream on your vegetables. To raise the dishes, use spices and aromatic herbs, choose quality meat and fish, seasonal fruits and vegetables, homemade fruit cocktails …

Weight loss after birth

From the 5th to the 9th month: Mincir and hold your good resolutions

The results are slow in coming? Consult again a nutritionist, small adjustments are surely necessary. This may also be the signal for a medical check-up. If for example, your thyroid is out of order, you will not lose weight and you may even gain weight despite your efforts. It’s also time to get back to physical activity. The sport helps burn calories and firm up the figure. To keep your motivation, choose an activity that you really like: yoga, pilates, walking …

Good to know, you will regain some weight at first, it’s normal. In fact, you build muscles and they weigh heavier than fat. Do not demotivate and keep moving. “At the calorie level, you started with a 1,200-calorie diet,” says Dr. Laurence Plumey. If you lose weight, and want to eat more starchy foods, you can increase to 1,500 calories. So increase the amount of starchy foods to 100 or 150g at lunchtime. And if your motivation flickers at times and you make some gaps, no worries. Compensate for the following meals by eating lighter.

From the 10th to the 12th month: stabilize your weight

Your goal is reached? Congratulations. You can go up to 1,800 calories a day. Which is very close to the caloric need of a woman who is not on a diet. You can then add a chocolate cake in the afternoon, a cake for dessert, a glass of wine, a plate of French fries … Make yourself happy! Maintain good eating habits and regular physical activity. And react quickly if you make too many extras and the weight goes up. But even if you have found your pre-pregnancy weight, you have to accept that you do not have exactly the same shape. The body changes. The hips are often wider.

3 pro tips to slim down quickly

Making real meals is essential to avoid nibbling. And eat light in the evening!

Manage your emotions. Sweet foods are comforting? You have to relearn how to manage your emotions other than through food. Sophrology, meditation or acupuncture are good helpers.

Lighten the recipes. Do you love gratin Dauphinois? Continue to eat, but using fresh cream with 15% fat (it is five times less fat than butter). In your salads, lengthen the vinaigrettes with a little water. Make the oven fries with a little sunflower oil. In cakes, use low fat butter at 41% fat and reduce the amount of sugar.

About the author

Mind & Health

Mind & Health

Mind & Health's mission is to disseminate information in the field of health and well-being. The information provided in this magazine is intended to improve and not to replace the relationship between the reader of the magazine and his doctor. The use of plants for therapeutic purposes can in no way substitute or be added to medical treatment current without the advice of a doctor.