What is the Best Diet to Lose Baby Weight?

You’ve just delivered your wonderful bouncing bundle of joy. You feel lighter, literally, but would still be like to be lighter still, by losing that baby weight. You may be wondering what diet all those celebrities used to lose the baby weight – after all, within weeks it seems like the pregnancy pounds are gone and there they are, looking stunning on the red carpet.

Well, in truth, those celebrity mommies have a huge incentive to get back to their per-pregnancy weight by losing pounds quickly  – big movie paycheck. Unfortunately (or fortunately) many of us do not have such an incentive, or pressure, to lose our baby weight. Nor the time or money to spend 3-4 hours in the gym, eating specially prepared meals and rationing our calorie intake  especially if you decide to breastfeed.

So what is the best diet to lose baby weight? Well in truth, the best way for a regular mom to lose her pregnancy weight is really not a diet at all, but to follow an organized plan for getting fit after baby. The following tips will help you to safely get rid of that baby weight

1. Breastfeed – New moms swear by breast feeding as the ideal way to lose weight. Nursing burns calories because you’re passing those (about 200-500 a day) along to the baby – on the other hand, you will need to consume more calories (up to 300 extra) to make up for the ones you’re sharing. If you’re breastfeeding, you still need to follow a sensible diet for to ensure you’re both getting the proper nutrients. And if you’re not breastfeeding, don’t worry; you can still work on losing the baby weight by following an exercise and eating plan.

2. Exercise – There is no way than getting around this – the key to achieving a healthy weight, whether you’re trying to lose baby weight or just trying to lose weight in general , is exercise. You need to get out and move. The formula is pretty simple – burn more calories than you consume and you’ll lose weight. This doesn’t mean you have to exercise like a celebrity or an aerobics instructor. And should you always check with your doctor before staring any post-pregnancy fitness routine. You need to commit to getting some physical exercise on a regular basis. The good news is that studies show three 15 minute sessions of activity can burn as many calories as one extended block of time – good news for moms who might find themselves with only a few minutes between naps and feedings. 

Some easy exercises to help shed those baby pounds

Power stroller walk – If you can’t easily take a stroller walk where you live, then head over to a local park. As long as the weather is reasonable you should be able to bundle you and baby up and get outside. Some new fitness centers even have indoor tracks where a certain time of the day is set aside for strollers. Malls – mall walking isn’t just for seniors anymore. Call your local mall and see if they allow fitness walking in the pre-opening hours.

Invest in a piece of home exercise equipment – It doesn’t have to be super fancy; even something as simple as a recumbent exercise bike can provide you with an at-home-exercise option. These bikes make it easy to read or watch TV while cycling. Get creative about where you put it – you’ll want it close enough so you can check on baby easily.

Strength training – lifting weight turns fat into muscles, and don’t worry, unless you’re working out a lot, strength training won’t make you look bulky. You don’t have to hit the barbells either. Try the classic push-up or even install a pull-up bar. Do leg lunges while walking with the stroller, or when the baby is a bit bigger, try lying on the floor and lifting her up above your chest – she’ll think she’s super girl and you’ll get a work out.

3. Diet – Uh-oh – the dreaded word. But don’t think of it as deprivation. Especially if you’re breastfeeding you can’t cut your calories too drastically in an effort to lose weight. And don’t try the newest fad diets. With these, pounds go and then come right back.  For steady and permanent baby weight loss, focus on eating a diet filled with healthy foods – fruits and vegetables, lean meats and proteins, whole grains and beans. Cut out junk food (the pregnancy ice cream sundaes need to go) and stay away from drinking your calories – from sodas to wine, these liquid calories contain a lot of calories  and won’t fill you up – or prevent you from eating your regular quantity of food.

And here are a few things not to do when attempting to start a post-baby weight loss program. 

1. Be too Strict – you just had a baby, a true miracle. Don’t beat yourself up for still having a few pounds. There’s an old adage about baby weight loss – “Nine months up, nine months down,” meaning it took you nine months to make a baby – and gain the weight, so allow yourself the same amount of time for the weight to go away.

2. Start a Diet Right Away – Again, especially if you’re breast feeding, don’t start cutting calories right away. Sometimes the excitement and yes, work, of a new baby can be overwhelming. The last thing you need in those first few weeks is to have one other thing to worry about or beat yourself about, i.e. cheating on some diet.

Remember, you’re a new mom and you have to take care of yourself and your baby. Keep everything in perspective and commit to making healthy choices. Your pre-pregnancy body can be yours again.

BOLA TANGKAS