For many women, the joy of motherhood often comes with its special challenges. From nursing your sore body to waking up at night to feed the baby and staying sane while managing the home front and career, the struggle is very real for every new mother. The biggest challenge of them all is the extra weight that comes with the arrival of your baby. At first, it feels good because your clothes look better and your hips no longer tell lies when you swing them. After a while, you begin to hear the whispers that can make life miserable for anyone. “You are becoming too fat o, you need to watch it” “Hian, na you go first born pikin? Biko do make your body dey smart o”. This can make some women despise the whole process and slip into depression.
The good news is you can actually get rid of the fat that threatens your peace of mind with the following steps.
This is a system that demands that mothers feed their children with only breast milk for the first few months of the baby’s life. This will make you lose weight as the food you eat is converted into breast milk by your body. As easy as it sounds, it takes a lot of courage, dedication and planning to make this happen. In order to ensure that you have enough milk to go on this journey, you may want to use a breast pump to get the milk out and measure the amount of breast milk you are able to provide. This way you can ascertain whether the baby is well-fed or not. It is important to know when to supplement with baby food or introduce baby to solids so as to have a healthy baby and avoid malnutrition. Note that you must put baby’s health before your weight as the proper execution of this is supposed to meet both your need and the baby’s.
Many new mothers are usually too tired to do any physically challenging work which may leave room for additional body fat to rest. If you are really keen on losing weight and keeping your body active, you may want to consider taking walks and doing simple exercises around the house. Also, the power of group support is very essential. If there is a gym around the house, you may want to sign up for it and go at the time that is very convenient for you after expressing breast milk for the baby.
Motherhood comes with the challenge of feeling hungry every time especially at night (after dinner time). The need to refill after breastfeeding is a big one as the body will demand its own due to get the milk production back on track. Many women use this chance to eat sweets in a bid to bring the sugar level up. If you are tempted to do this, don’t give in. Instead go for edibles like a boiled egg, fruits (e.g. tiger nuts) and high-liquid content meals like pap, custard which will help the body produce more milk and quench your hunger without adding an additional kg to your frame.
The act of lovemaking was what brought about the conception of the baby in the first place and it is a way of getting your body to wake up after the hard work of childbirth. For women who had their babies naturally, the act of lovemaking can be re-introduced after 6 weeks of abstinence. This will get the body back to the pre-pregnancy state and help you become more active as a woman. This should only be explored after you have gotten some form of contraceptive to avoid getting pregnant few months after the birth of your little one.
Contraceptives are measures that help women keep pregnancy at bay. After childbirth, you will be advised to choose a contraceptive that is suitable for you. The options range from hormonal to non-hormonal. Hormonal contraceptives have the tendency to tamper with the chemical balance in your body and set you up for weight gain. If you do not want to struggle with that in addition to the already existing baby fat, you may want to explore options like condoms & IUD which prevents the fertilization in the ovaries. and do not tamper with your hormones.
You may be overwhelmed by your urge to lose weight but you must take it easy and give yourself time. Going through childbirth is a lot of work that took 9 long months, it will pass. Please speak with a doctor to be sure that you are in the right form and frame of mind to embark on this journey. Don’t stop being a diva!