Postpartum Weight Loss: Things You Need to Know
New mothers are often eager to put away their maternity clothes, lose that pregnancy weight gain, and slip back into their old clothes as fast as possible. This anxiety to get back to their pre pregnancy weight, combined with juggling a new born baby with recovering from labour, it can get very stressful.
In today’s blog, we are going to discuss some tips and things to pay attention in the postpartum weight loss journey.
Tips to Help You During your Postpartum Weight Loss
We would all love to lose weight rapidly after giving birth. However, after taking 10 months of time to grow a baby inside the womb, it’ll also take some time to lose postpartum weight. A recent study has found that 80% of women take more than 3 months to return pre-pregnancy weight.
Setting realistic weight loss goals
Including the weight of the baby, amniotic fluid and placenta, most women lose roughly 5.9 kilograms right after childbirth. Depending on how much weight you gained during pregnancy, it’s reasonable to expect to lose around half a kilogram per week.
Take breastfeeding into account
World Health Organization (WHO) has proven that breastfeeding provides many benefits for both mothers and babies, in terms of nutrition, immune system, and so on. Additionally, research has shown that breastfeeding can support your postpartum weight loss.
Include your baby
Exercise is difficult for busy people especially new mothers, so consider including your baby in your routine. Take your baby for a walk with you in a stroller or baby carrier.
Things to pay attention to during postpartum weight loss
Urinating during exercise is common, but not normal
New mothers often experience urination when they sneeze, jump rope, or laugh. This is called stress urinary incontinence (SUI). While a lot of mothers accept this as their “new normal”, they really should not because SUI is not normal and can be treated.
If you experience leakage, see your doctor or find a pelvic floor physiotherapist to learn how to treat your symptoms.
Mommy pooch that stay steadily
The mommy pooch is caused by stretching and weakening of the rectus abdominis muscles (six-pack muscles), and the linea alba (connective tissue holding the muscles together). This is a condition called Diastasis Recti and can also be treated.
If you notice a bulging or a gap in your abdomen when performing a crunch, you should stop the further core exercise and make an appointment with your doctor to check for diastasis recti. Watch this short video to check if you have diastasis recti.
We have posted a checklist for new monthers to check before their exercises on instagram. Here’s a video to teach you on checking if you have diastasis recti before you start your abdominal exercises. Click here to watch.
Shi Qi graduated with Bachelor of Physiotherapy (Hons), awarded by Anglia Ruskin University, UK. Certified Kinesio Taping Practitioner (CKTP®). She practiced as a physiotherapist in a Malaysian private physiotherapy center with a special interest in musculoskeletal and neurological rehabilitation. Her previous experience inspired her to combine active approach along with patients’ education to optimize the rehabilitation outcome in sports related injuries and postural pain.
In her spare time, she enjoys swimming, singing, and playing piano.