June 1, 2007, Newsletter Issue #132: Breastfeeding and Weight Loss

Tip of the Week

While many newer moms are eager to get their body back, remember that it took nine months to gain the weight, so realize it should take at least that long to lose it all. To help the weight loss process progress, consider these tips:

- Eating regular meals and limiting high calorie snacks and beverages.

Breastfeeding requires 500 calories a day for a typical baby. If a woman went to the gym and worked out for 45 minutes, she still would have trouble burning 500 calories. When eating reasonable amounts, these additional calories burn from the fat stores in the woman's body.

- Avoid crash dieting, as rapid weight loss will decrease the milk supply.

Vigorous dieting also produces other negative effects as the body stores toxic substances in fat. Therefore, rapid fat burning will release a large amount of toxins into the women's body and too many toxins at one time for a small infant body is potentially harmful.

- In order to maintain health while nursing, an average sized woman should consume at least 1800 calories a day.

For the average woman two pounds of weight loss each month is reasonable; but for an overweight woman, up to four pounds a month is acceptable weight loss.

- Moderate exercise while breastfeeding will boost energy and encourage weight loss.

Be sure to wear supportive bras or tops to protect your breasts as bouncing can cause the milk ducts to leak creating potential damage to the cells - leading to an increase in the risk of developing breast infections.

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