The 14 Best Nutrition Tips: How To Not Gain Weight During Pregnancy?
Every new mom knows the struggle. Sleepless nights, a crying baby, overwhelming hormones, and…the body. Formerly pregnant and newly vacated, it’s not what it once was. Many women find this hard to reconcile. However, losing that pregnancy weight actually starts long before conception. Maintaining a healthy diet and regular exercise before, during, and after pregnancy is vital for the health- and figure- of mom and baby.
Before we go any further it is imperative to understand that pregnancy is not the time for extreme fluctuation in weight. Your OB/GYN will advise you regarding appropriate weight gain and diet. Pregnancy should be continuing the health already established prior to seeing the plus sign.
Here are tips for weight loss before and after pregnancy:
1. Lose excess weight
According to WebMd: “Studies link being overweight to a list of pregnancy complications, including miscarriage, stillbirth, and birth defects such as spina bifida. Too many pounds also makes it harder for you to conceive in the first place. You’re also more likely to develop problems during your pregnancy, including high blood pressure (preeclampsia) and gestational diabetes.” Save yourself the unnecessary risk by maintaining a healthy weight before you commence the pregnancy journey.
2. Make substitutions
Dieting does not involve restrictions and fads, but a lifelong food transformation. Start this process with substitutions. Replace the white bread on your sandwich with whole grain. If you’re craving French fries slice some sweet potatoes and bake them in the oven. Add fruit to flavor water in lieu of a carbonated beverage.
3. Increase fruits and veggies
The advantages of a plant-based diet are well documented. Even if you aren’t ready to take the vegetarian plunge, incorporate more of the good stuff into your diet. Add less meat and more vegetables to your sandwiches. Have a fruit smoothie for dessert instead of cookies. Aim for a plate filled with color.
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4. Take a prenatal vitamin
Even if you aren’t currently pregnant taking a vitamin ensures you have the vital nutrients necessary to sustain a healthy pregnancy, such as folic acid.
RELATED ARTICLE: Top 5 Pregnancy Exercise Mistakes And How To Avoid Them
5. Make workouts feasible
Don’t sign up for a 5 am boot camp because Suzy Smith swears by it. Find classes that interest you or you won’t want to attend. Make sure whatever you do is close to your house or office or you won’t be attending that one either. Or bypass the group thing altogether and watch TV while you run on the treadmill. Whatever appeals to you, make it as interesting and easy as possible.
6. But remember a gym is not necessary
Not everyone can afford pricey gym memberships or squeeze Zumba classes into their routine. Buy a few basics- such as a yoga mat, free weights, jump rope, resistance band, etc. and bring your workout to your house. Browse YouTube for fitness videos.
7. No excuses
With all of the free apps available for smartphones, there is no excuse to not know exactly where you stand in terms of what you’re eating and how much you’re moving. If you are an outdoor walker and it’s raining, do a workout DVD. If you binge one day, eat clean for the next three.
[[Congratulations! You’ve had a baby. Now we’ll discuss how to lose weight after that life changing event.]]
8. Be realistic about your expectations
Don’t anticipate sweating it out at Crossfit one week after you leave labor and delivery. Ease your way back into your workout routine. This is especially true if you’ve had a C-section. Clear any strenuous exercise with your OB/GYN.
9. Breastfeed your baby
One of the numerous benefits of keeping it natural includes weight loss.
10. Make fitness a family activity
Take walks with your baby snuggled to your chest. Bring your husband along for some quality time or grab a girlfriend to hold you accountable. If you have other children facilitate a family event such as kickball or tag.
11. Plan meals in advance
As if reducing your grocery budget, saving time, and eliminating food waste wasn’t glorious enough…knowing what you’ll consume in advance makes it easier to eat smarter. Staring at a pantry full of food when you’re ravenous rarely leads to healthy food choices.
12. Keep healthy, convenient snacks on hand
Zapping a TV dinner in the microwave becomes a common post-pregnancy pitfall. Stock your kitchen with healthy alternatives [or skip buying freezer meals altogether] that you can grab and go. Think nuts, sunflower seeds, fresh fruit, carrot sticks, etc.
13. Watch portion sizes
Labels are there for a reason. Use them accordingly. Measure out serving sizes. Food should be eaten from plates or bowls as opposed to the container in which they are purchased.
14. Eliminate fast food
Your wallet will thank you. So will your waistline.