All the attention has been on your baby bump. People talk to it, strangers have an uncontrollable need to rub it, photos are snapped regularly, and you are allowed to use any bathroom, anywhere..just by laying a hand on it and giving a small smile. It’s awesome. And then you get the most wonderful, the most beautiful baby in the WHOLE world. And a belly that still looks pregnant…very, very, pregnant. Luckily, most of this belly weight will pass rather quickly as fluids leave your body and your uterus shrinks back down to size. But not all of it..not even close.
Have faith MomMes, all hope is not lost! There are many things you can do before and after labor to fit into your pre-baby jeans!
First of all, let’s remember one thing. Your baby took 9 months to make. Your body slowly expanded, and you should give it the respect of giving it time to slim down again. Lasting change takes time.
So what can you do before labor? Eat well, exercise, rest. No surprise here. The less unnecessary weight you gain, the less you have to lose. Eat whole foods and incorporate a healthy exercise routine.
From the moment you deliver, your body begins its shrinking process. This could take a few weeks. Don’t worry about exercising for the first 6 weeks, 8 if you delivered by c-section (get an ok from your dr. first!) However, do take walks. Enjoy them. Breathe some fresh air and let your body move daily. You and your babe need time to establish your milk supply, so no cutting calories. Losing weight too quickly can also release toxins into your breastmilk and harm your baby. Eat plenty of whole, healthy food.
Breastfeed. It can burn 500-800 calories a day and signals your uterus to contract and shrink. And it’s the ultimate source of nutrition for your little one.
Drink plenty of water. It will keep your milk supply and metabolism up. Also, keeping hydrated fills you up so you don’t over eat. Do you forget to drink up? Set aside a time when you will have a glass of water. On the hour, every hour or before every feeding.
Fiber is crucial. High fiber foods prevent insulin spikes. Why is this good? When insulin spikes, it tells our bodies that there is a bunch of energy to be burned off and to not burn any fat, so the fat gets stored. Then comes the insulin drop which makes us feel groggy and tired (food coma, anyone?) and usually craving more sugar (maybe just a little desert?) which takes us back to the insulin spike….seeing a cycle here?
Now let’s get into the actual food. What food is the absolute BEST in losing that pregnancy weight? Here is a list of foods that are easy to prepare, easy to eat (especially with one hand while holding/rocking/nursing baby), and easy to store. And while some moms are used to a whole food diet full of kale and quinoa, the reality is that most moms are not. This list is full of foods that are super healthy, but maybe a little more practical for the average mom.
Love yourself some mayo? Try hummus or smashing some avocado instead. Sour cream? Try Greek yogurt instead.
I’m a sucker for wraps. Try having a tortilla with hummus, chicken, cucumber, tomato OR a pita with spinach, brown rice, salmon and Greek yogurt OR a tortilla with smashed avocado, spinach, carrots, egg, bell pepper, and tomato. Load whatever you eat with veggies. Eat well, be well, feel well!
Allya Orlov is a Certified Health Coach, providing fitness, diet, wellness and nutrition counseling, bringing harmony and balance to both mother and child. All Club MomMe fans get a FREE initial consultation! Find out more atwww.OrganicLifeWellness.com