Our expert says:
Congratulations on the birth of your baby and the fact that you are breastfeeding despite having to go to work. I salute you.
To lose weight you need to reduce your energy intake and increase your energy output. You can try using an energy-reduced, low-fat, high-fibre diet (click on 'Diet & Nutrition' at the top of this page, then on 'Healthy Diets' and then on 'Slimming Diet' for a copy of such a diet) to reduce your energy intake, BUT please add 1-2 additional servings of low-fat milk or yoghurt or cottage cheese to the suggested foods every day. Breastfeeding women need up to 1300 mg of calcium a day to provide for the needs of the growing baby and to prevent negative effects such as brittle bones in the short term and osteoporosis in the long term. Low-fat milk and dairy products are our best source of highly available calcium in the diet and research indicates that diets high in low-fat milk and dairy actually promote weightloss. To increase your energy output it would help if you could do regular exercise. If possible take baby for a brisk walk every day (use a kangaroo pouch or a sling), because carrying the baby helps you burn more energy! You can also consider doing targeted exercises to start working on any problem areas like the tummy or the hips - ask Fitness Doc on this Website for info on such exercises.
It is possible to lose weight when you are breastfeeding, but do it slowly and don't use fad diets, slimming pills (the active ingredients may pass into your milk and harm the baby) or excessive exercise as this can reduce your milk production.
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