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Top 5 expert tips to lose post pregnancy weight

Sensible tips by renowned experts to help shed the extra pounds.

Written by Kriti Saraswat |Updated : October 9, 2014 4:51 PM IST

Post pregnancy weight lossYou've welcomed your baby into this world after a patient wait of nine months and now you want to get back your pre-pregnancy figure and weight. It can be a daunting challenge as you have to take care of your newborn breastfeeding, having sleepless nights, pacifying the baby and much more. Amongst all this, finding time to exercise to shed pregnancy weight may slip out of your priority list. But with these expert tips, you can surely manage to do it easily. Here's a guide to get back in shape post pregnancy.

Don't let the calories pile on

If you eat smartly during your pregnancy, you will have lesser fat which means lesser time to get back in shape. The biggest misconception many women have is that you need to eat for two people when pregnant. According to leading lifestyle and obesity consultant Naini Setalvad, 'Pregnant women only need 300 more calories than their normal diet and they need to get them from all food groups and not just fat.' Eat responsibly and eat healthy to not pile on additional calories which will be difficult to get rid of after your delivery.

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Even little exercise can help

You've gone through a surge of physical, emotional and hormonal changes but you can't let go. Take a break of a few weeks but then get back on track by exercising. Exercise helps beat depression, it also helps cope with sleep disorders and in relieving stress. According to Dr Vijaya Manohar, consultant gynaecologist at Apollo Cradle, the ideal time to lose this weight is one month post your delivery.

'Finding the time to fit exercise into your daily life, now that you have a newborn, can be tricky as your priority would be to take care of the baby. If you find it hard to make some time to exercise because of the baby, include the baby in the routine. Take the baby for a daily walk in the stroller or baby carrier. Lay the baby next to you while doing stretches and crunches on the floor, or include the baby in strength training activities like lifting the baby above you while you lie on your back,' she suggests.

Breastfeeding burns calories

An excellent way to lose some of your pregnancy weight is to breastfeed! One of the reasons your body puts on weight during pregnancy is to help store the caloric energy it takes to breastfeed your baby - about 200 to 500 extra calories per day. Therefore take advantage of losing calories the way your body naturally intended by breastfeeding.

Make smart food choices

Celebrity food writer and chef Anjum Anand advises new mothers to keep their diet simple yet nutritious. She says, 'Try eating really simple and easy-to-digest foods like soups, stews, porridges, rice and lentil dishes. What a mother eats when she breastfeeds is also what the baby has to digest, so keep it simple and light. Also, try to avoid eating foods that are too spicy, especially if you are breastfeeding.'

Have patience

After giving birth, your joints will be loose because of the hormone relaxin which has allowed everything to stretch to accommodate your baby. Avoid excessive flexibility training for 16-20 weeks, high-impact activities and lifting heavy weights. Build your fitness gradually for both your body's safety and for sensible physiological progression. Start with some gentle exercises such as walking, pelvic floor exercises and stretching.

These expert tips will help you trim down and get back your pre-pregnancy figure in a few months. With the right diet and exercise, you will soon be able to fit into your old pair of jeans or flaunt your body in a figure-hugging dress.

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