Quick poll - did you lose or gain weight when breastfeeding?

(47 Posts)
MayimBialik Sun 09-Dec-12 13:18:11

I'm not sure if I should post this here or the weightloss topic. Sorry if it's wrong.

I'm currently BFing DS who is 3 weeks old. He's thriving despite the fact that I find it very difficult. Still painful, have had my latch looked at several times and apparently it's right, and am struggling with the fact that the job can't be shared so I am chained to the sofa for much if the day. At night times are difficult too - sleep deprivation is a killer.

Anyway I am persevering for his sake and he's a healthy little chubster so it must be doing him good which is a real boost for me. But other reasons that give me motivation to carry on are the convenience over making up a formula bottle and the fact that it may help me lose my baby weight. (I know incredibly superficial!)

Just wondering though - is it a given that you'll lose weight (if eating healthily too!) because I've read about people unable to lose weight until after they've stopped BFing?

What was your experience of this?

MamaMary Sun 09-Dec-12 13:19:35

I was unable to lose weight until I stopped BFing. Until then I kept a healthy layer of fat!

Sorry if it's not what you want to hear. Still resent the lies I was told about the weight dropping off!

YouOldTinsellySlag Sun 09-Dec-12 13:20:25

I BFed round the clock due to a massive baby and a heatwave and yes, I did lose weight. I was the slimmest I'd been in years.

Unfortunately when I stopped- wallop- Michelin woman was back!

puffylovett Sun 09-Dec-12 13:22:21

I lost weight initially with both, then by 6 months had put weight back on. I'm currently weaning 3 yr ds and the weight is starting to finally trickle off. Sorry sad

I lost loads, becoming thinner than I'd ever been despite huge cake consumption.

GwennieF Sun 09-Dec-12 13:25:59

I lost all my pregnancy weight in the first six months of breastfeeding (4 stone with DS and 2.5 with DD) it stayed off both times....

I didn't watch what I ate either - if anything, at times I was eating more.

WhatDoesTheDogSay Sun 09-Dec-12 13:29:39

Lost weight, and more dramatically than I would have chosen. And then lost my boobs after stopping breastfeeding sad. Boobs slowly making a comeback around 6 months later though!

Jahan Sun 09-Dec-12 13:31:48

I stay the same if I eat what I want - lots of cake and choc
If I watch what I eat then I lose weight quite easily. Im feeding 7 week old dd at the moment and have lost about 4lbs from watching what I eat for about 4 days in the past 2 weeks.

cassell Sun 09-Dec-12 13:35:32

Lost weight, bf ds1 til 18mo, was back at Pre preg weight by 3mths without doing anything other than bfing and eating my body weight in chocolate blush grin. Been a bit slower weight loss this time round, ds2 is 7mo (still ebf) been back at Pre preg weight for a couple of months but do have to think a bit more about how much choc/cake/biscuits I eat.

I stayed the same throughout. I cut down BF quite gradually, now down to one feed every couple of days, and haven't noticed any more weight loss or gain.

I'm still about half a stone heavier than I was pre-pregnancy, but I'm not really that fussed about shifting it until after Christmas!!

ATouchOfStuffing Sun 09-Dec-12 13:42:04

I put on 3.5st when pg (went up to 12.5st) and 6 months after she was born I had lost nearly 5st. It was really unhealthy and you could see my vertebrae. Was eating huge amounts and loads of cheese and cake but didn't get back to a healthy weight for me until I stopped bfing at 11months. Now about .5st lighter than when I got pg, so all good smile

ATouchOfStuffing Sun 09-Dec-12 13:43:18

She was 10.1Ib's though and placenta was apparently the biggest they ever saw...so a few st's may have been accounted for there...

Lost weight, especially when tandem feeding. Got to below my pre-pregnancy weight quite quickly despite the epic amounts of cake and chocolate. There was a point at the beginning where I was worried about losing weight too quickly but I ate very sensibly (not just cake and chocolate!) and the weight loss has evened out.

I also found that my stomach went back to its pre-pregnancy shape (nearly flat <runs away> ) pretty quickly. BF does help your uterus shrink back to normal size so that's probably why. My thighs took a bit longer to shrink grin and I'm still 2 cup sizes bigger even though DD2 will be 2yo soon.

Spiritedwolf Sun 09-Dec-12 17:18:12

It totally depends on what you eat, what your activity levels were before and after etc. You can totally lose weight whilst breastfeeding, but you might find your appetite is higher than before and that you are less active, so its not a given.

People who are good at eating the right amount to maintain their pre-pregnancy weight probably do find that they lose the last couple of pounds once they finish breastfeeding, because of losing the milk and perhaps associated fat stores etc. However, breastfeeding alone stop them from losing most of the weight before, iyswim?

Personally, I am about a stone lighter than my (very overweight) pre pregnancy weight at 4 months but I lost most of the weight in the first 2 months (had been careful not to overeat in pregnancy) and have stagnated. If I cut out the chocolate that I'm overeating, I'd be losing weight though.

But I was over weight and relatively inactive before, if you were really active, you might find it takes a while to build back up to that if you are spending a long time feeding on the sofa.

I intend to get back to eating healthily, especially after Christmas, hopefully to make use of breastfeeding to lose some weight, but also to set a good example in terms of weaning foods. I've got about 5 stone to lose, but I lost 6 before becoming pregnant and another since, so I know what I'm doing and its a long term life change not a crash diet. smile

ThoughtsPlease Sun 09-Dec-12 17:55:36

I am petite anyway but with all 3 EBF children I have been back to previous weight within a few months. I don't diet in any way and eat plenty of crap too! I would think that as long as you haven't put on excess weight in pregnancy and have a stable weight normally, breastfeeding and listening to your body about what you really need to eat, then yes the weight should still be able to be lost while breastfeeding.

materrules Sun 09-Dec-12 18:15:58

I lost all baby weight and more by 6 week check feeding a hungry little man and eating lots of cake! However i am aware from friends this doesnt happen to everyone. Went back to normal size -about 3 months after stopping and boobs went back to normal size about 6 months after stopping

ISpyDingDongMerrilyOnHigh Sun 09-Dec-12 18:31:18

With DS1, despite eating far more cake, crisps and biscuits than would ever be recommended for human consumption I ended up having to buy size 8 clothes for the first time since I left school (usually a 10).

Only a week in with DS2, but already got a reasonable stomach (will need toning at some point - not expecting bf to work that much of a miracle grin) and something resembling a waist. Fx that it'll continue this way although from a general health pov I really need to sort diet out.

Didn't lose a bean, was eating 1200 cals
For a week to check! Lost nada.
Stopped feeding around 10m and weight jus falls off slowly.

mmmmsleep Sun 09-Dec-12 18:37:29

Gained weight but in truth how i ever expected to lose it on a steady diet of chocolate, hot chocolate, cakes and sweets and sitting on sofa / coffee shops with friends i don"t know. Ds was diagnosed with dairy egg and wheat allergy at 6m so i had to exclude those things from my diet as well (with calcium supplements) . Wow the weight fell off then!

MyLastDuchess Sun 09-Dec-12 18:41:36

I lost the weight within a matter of weeks.

My friend didn't lose hers until she stopped BFing.

It just depends on your genes really; a lot of women hang on to weight while BFing and some don't. I just couldn't keep it on!

I was almost straight back into the pre-pg jeans, but then I didn't put much weight on. I took a lot of weight off really quickly during summer when I could walk everywhere with the pram, and I was getting a reasonable amount of sleep. Then the four month sleep regression hit at three months angry and hasn't ended so I have zero energy to walk and require obscene amounts of biscuits to get through the day. Plus BFing has made me hungrier than I've ever been in my life. Despite this, my weight is staying stable, although I'd like to lose a bit, and I suspect that's down to the fairly continuous day and night feeding I'm doing.

Bunbaker Sun 09-Dec-12 18:46:13

I ate crate-loads of cake when breastfeeding and the weight dropped off me. I was back in my pre-pregnancy jeans after three weeks.

ArthurandGeorge Sun 09-Dec-12 18:46:19

I lost weight really quickly whilst bf, pre-pregnancy weight within 6 weeks.

Longdistance Sun 09-Dec-12 18:55:30

I seemed to put the weight on. Although, was mega tired and thirsty all the time. With dd1 she fed almost constantly, she would feed and feed. But, then not gain masses of weight or sleep so I just gave up after 8/9 months after mixed feeding at 6 months.

Dd2 fed very little, gained lots of weight, and still didn't lose weight then either.

Was massively disappointed by all this losing weight myth I'd heard of. Well, it was a myth to me!

BumgrapesofWrath Sun 09-Dec-12 18:56:13

I gained weight. Probably because I craved sweet things all the time (and I don't have a sweet tooth), and I was sleep deprived. I looked loads fatter 6 months after the birth than I did straight after.

PollyIndia Sun 09-Dec-12 18:57:00

Same as Arthur and George and I have been mainlining cake and chocolate. I couldn't believe it when the doc weighed me and I was back to 53 kgs. A nice side effect of breastfeeding!

Beamur Sun 09-Dec-12 18:57:58

I lost loads of weight while bf. Sadly put it all back (and maybe a few more pounds) when DD weaned - she was still bf obviously not taking as many calories from me, but I didn't cut down on the cake!!

CuriouslyChristmassyColaHam Sun 09-Dec-12 19:00:07

I lost loads. I had to make a conscious effort to eat more to maintain my weight. Never had a sweet tooth before, but couldn't get enough of it.

scrumpkin Sun 09-Dec-12 19:03:50

I cannot lose weight whilst bf. envy

SleighbellsRingInYourLife Sun 09-Dec-12 19:20:52

I hold onto fat when bfing.

I'm constantly starving and crave sweet things even more than usual.

CandyPop Mon 10-Dec-12 05:20:40

My LO is 4 weeks and I only have 5lbs to go to get to pre pregnancy weight. Weight has been steadily dropping off. I'm not eating crazy but definitely having more fair share if not more of chocolate and biscuits!

I've done no exercise either or been out for walks much so hopefully when I start doing that it will also help!

GirlWithTheMouseyHair Mon 10-Dec-12 05:27:52

With DC1 I was below pre-pregnancy weight within a month of his birth, DC2 I held onto most of the weight but it fell off (mainly thanks to appetite massively decreasing,I ate for 10 while ebf 2nd time around) when she weaned

CandyPop Mon 10-Dec-12 05:28:16

Also to add... I but on 3.5stones from my pregnancy so the weight loss has been pretty dramatic !

I lost and put all my prebaby weight back on within months of stopping

TheReturnOfBridezilla Mon 10-Dec-12 06:00:25

Kept the weight on til I stopped. Lots of people say you lose weight if you are bigger to start with but I wasn't. Sob. Lost it quickly afterwards though.

Maximilimum Mon 10-Dec-12 06:14:16

I lost weight v quickly, not really trying and eating whatever I liked. I haven't weighed myself for a while but I'm almost back to pre-pregnancy weight at 6 months.

jaggythistle Mon 10-Dec-12 06:31:39

i put on 3-4 stones with both pregnancies and lost weight very quickly, despite eating far more sweet stuff than usual.

this time round i was back to pre-pg weight by 8 week check. shock

i am now about 6-7 kilos lighter after 8 months.

i was fairly overweight before and could still do with losing about a stone.

I'm going to have to watch though, with DS1 the weight loss stopped when he was around a year old but i didn't stop eating extra food. i went back to being overweight fairly quickly, although this was partly due to grumpy comfort eating while ttc.

i have one friend who has lost weight in a similar way to me, but know other people who struggled to lose until they stopped feeding.

SuiGeneris Mon 10-Dec-12 07:40:25

Lost weight steadily both times despite not watching my diet and eating all I wanted.

With DS1 I had lost about 15 kgs of pregnancy weight within the first 9 months of breastfeeding and was below pre-pregnancy weight by the time he was 1. Continued breastfeeding him until 23 months and 5 months pregnant with DC2.

DC2 is 7 months and again, I have lost 15 kgs of pregnancy weight (had gained 17kgs in both pregnancies). I am hoping to be at pre-pregnancy weight by the time he is 9 months but am not dieting, just eating sensibly (including chocolate after lunch and dinner and 2/3 biscuits at breakfast).

To put this in context for you, my weight is usually very stable and, bar pregnancies, I have been within 2 kgs of my pre-pregnancy weight for the last 6/7 years.

Well done for keeping breastfeeding through the pain. Do get the issues sorted as it does get easier and it is wonderful once it works.

NervousAt20 Mon 10-Dec-12 07:49:09

I lost a stone and a half then it stopped there and I'm still half a stone away from my pre pregnancy weight

3plus2 Mon 10-Dec-12 18:01:14

I've I'm back at Pre preg weight 4 months on but I'm big anyway (size 18)

ComradeJing Mon 10-Dec-12 18:09:38

With dd and ds I was in my pre pg jeans and pre pg weight leaving the hospital but gained a lot after.

It was a combination of being starving all the time, boredom, huge sugar cravings, sleep deprivation and bfing I think.

mamaonion Mon 10-Dec-12 19:04:28

Lost it in 3 months except for last few pounds which lingered until I stopped feeding with first 2, this time I'm still feeding but dropped last half a stone with a horrendous tummy bug!!! Hasn't gone back on, so I think the last few pounds are a good safety net if you're bf and naturally very slim! I never tried to lose weight bf, gradual and natural process.

Op hope it's all better soon well done for persevering you'll be really chuffed you stuck with it when you look back

mamaonion Mon 10-Dec-12 19:05:04

Lost it in 3 months except for last few pounds which lingered until I stopped feeding with first 2. This time I'm still feeding but dropped last half a stone with a horrendous tummy bug!!! Hasn't gone back on, so I think the last few pounds are a good safety net if you're bf and naturally very slim! I never tried to lose weight bf, gradual and natural process.

Op hope it's all better soon well done for persevering you'll be really chuffed you stuck with it when you look back

DeckTheHallsWithBoughsOfJolly Mon 10-Dec-12 19:07:37

Lost loads in the first year. Have put some back on again since Ds turned 1. That's my lack of exercise and overeating though rather than the BFing causing me to gain weight.

AngelOne Mon 10-Dec-12 19:36:37

I lost all pregnancy weight very quickly, and then a little bit more.

But then I put some of it back on when I stopped breastfeeding sad

JiltedJohnsJulie Mon 10-Dec-12 20:25:51

Couldn't keep my weight on and HAD to eat vast quantities of cake, but I think DS had undiagnosed tongue tie and I'm wondering from your symptoms if that's what your lovely new Lo has too?

MrsNPattz Mon 10-Dec-12 21:03:37

I am not losing any weight whatsoever! Of course I only have myself to blame because of the amount of sweet stuff I eat! But I really believed the weight would drop off after everything I heard. I do look at my spare tyre and think yuk, but I'm really not motivated to do anything about it at the moment!

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