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That old chestnut - losing weight when breastfeeding (mum, not baby)

(33 Posts)
motomoto Wed 23-Sep-09 12:38:57

I have a big baby (over 98th centile) excl bf till just before 6 months, eating solids now, but I am still over pre-pregnancy weight and it just isn't shifting! especially round the waist! is it ok to knuckle down dietwise now bub on solids?

how did you lose weight when bf? thanks

mawbroon Wed 23-Sep-09 13:16:04

Mine came off in dribs and drabs as the amount of feeding reduced.

I had 2.5stones to lose and hadn't lost much by 6 months, then about half a stone vanished pretty quickly when he got well established on solids and started taking less milk.

Then I lost another chunk when he started sleeping through the night.

And another chunk as he got more active/distracted etc etc

I was hoping that when we stopped completely, I would turn into Twiggy wink but I'm now pg again and he's not stopped yet, but I did actually briefly get to my pre pregnancy weight before the cakes got a hold of me again. shock

I was starving the whole time when I was breastfeeding btw, to the point that eating sometimes felt like a chore, and this weight loss was without doing a single thing diet wise and not terribly much exercise wise either - just carrying ds in the sling.

motomoto Wed 23-Sep-09 13:22:45

I'm just amazed I am not like a stick - isn't the energy to breastfeed supposed to come from lard stores??

iwantitnow Wed 23-Sep-09 15:09:19

DS now 6 months, still have over a stone to lose, I run around like a madwoman after two children, don't eat that much and still don't lose any weight - maybe I should just eat cake all day and that would work. I remember last time it was around this stage the weight dropped off, but more weight to lose although put on far less, weird what BFing hormones does to us

mathanxiety Wed 23-Sep-09 17:00:20

I don't think you can expect to lose weight until you're getting a decent sleep every night. Plus, it's not really how much, but exactly what you're eating that counts. If your diet is healthy (high in fibre and protein) and doesn't have refined carbs as the major component, then you'll gradually lose weight. Also, doing actual exercise (if you can find any time at all smile) is probably more beneficial than all the running around because you're targeting specific areas like the belly or rear end or thighs. Lifting weights burns calories and is great for women as we move into 30s and 40s.

ShowOfHandsInEpistolaryForm Wed 23-Sep-09 17:04:42

You can diet when bfeeding, no reason why you shouldn't.

I am still bfeeding my 2.4yr old and despite eating healthily and walking/cycling everywhere it just didn't go. I took up running and though have lost 2 stones- I run 5/6 times a week, up to 10k a pop- I still have a half a stone to go. It won't shift and have heard many, many women have the same problem while still feeding. DD showing no signs of stopping though so I'm ignoring it and will worry about it when she weans.

mosschops30 Wed 23-Sep-09 17:09:40

The women who say 'oh I lost all the weight bu just breastfeeding' are lying!!
I dont know anyone who has lost all their baby weight from breast feeding alone.

The most important thing, whether breast feeding or not is to eat a healthy balanced diet and exercise regularly - thats the only way to lose weight and for it to stay off - FACT!

wellbalanced Wed 23-Sep-09 17:55:23

mosschops-I lost all my weight and a stone more by breastfeeding....
If it wasnt breastfeeding i dont know what it was as i put just over 2 stone on in pregnancy and lost it by 10-12 week and now at 22 wk am a stone even lighter, i eat a healthy well bananced diet and not much excercise (lots pram pushing, walking round house for hrs with bub's!) Sorry blush

mawbroon Wed 23-Sep-09 18:14:41

I definitely only lost mine through breastfeeding. No doubt about it.

motomoto Wed 23-Sep-09 18:34:28

so if I just stop eating treats and crap, I will lose weight even if breastfeeding? can someone spell out what a healthy diet I should be doing (have stuffed face for too long to remember blush)

I didn't lose a single lb and b/f for 16 months. My MIL reckoned that some women who b/f will find that their bodies store all calories to help breastfeeding.

mmrsceptic Wed 23-Sep-09 18:40:51

Yes, I lost the weight and more through feeding. When I stopped breastfeeding I put on weight as I continued to eat the amounts I had before (ie normal food plus doughnuts and stuff).

I don't think it's a case of reducing intake so much as getting more sleep, definitely, like maths says, and increasing exercise. If you have half an hour a day then try to do weight bearing exercise as this is the most effective -- and then you will use up more calories doing the normal "running around all day" than you would before.

MarkStretch Wed 23-Sep-09 18:43:15

Stripey you beat me too it.

I have a theory:

Your body will make milk as a priority, so say you get a sickness bug and don't eat for 5 days, you will still make milk, from fat stores.

Therefore I think your body holds on to some pregnancy lard in order to make milk and it's only when you stop b/f that you lose weight.

Anyone with me?

Debs75 Wed 23-Sep-09 18:46:02

Oh God I was hoping bf would help me lose weight as I lost a total of 40lbs when pregnant and was in a great frame of mind to keep it off.

1 year later and I have put about 15lbs(and the rest) on despite bf excl for 6 months and still bf now.

I can still fit in my pre-pregnancy jeans though and isn't that every mum's targetwink

Mmmmmmm, but I didn't lose the weight when I stopped either. My MIL had assured me I would but she was wrong on that. 9 years on I'm still waiting.

8oreighty Wed 23-Sep-09 19:17:57

I gained weight when bf, but had twins. I ate like never before. Had to really...it comes off just takes a while, they were 2 before I was happy with my size again. Not what you want to hear, seems an eternity at the time, but now looking back it feels like a blip.

mawbroon Wed 23-Sep-09 19:40:36

I would agree that it takes a long time to come off. I think it took about a year for me to get back to pre pg weight.

motomoto Wed 23-Sep-09 20:33:04

it's so weird that it doesn't come off fast -so bf makes you eat enough so it doesn't have to use up all your fat?

8oreighty Thu 24-Sep-09 11:11:43

think is different for everyone. A friend of mine got quite thin after she gave birth and her milk didn't really come in properly until she gained a stone...I definitely had the fat reserves to draw on! There are no rules to it. I just had to eat a lot, or I was ravenous anyway, and cared more about producing loads of milk than looking good, actually I didn't have time to think and I was starving all the time...I had to resort to doing weightwatchers online to get rid of hte last stone and a half...but partly because I was used to eating so much.

Habbibu Thu 24-Sep-09 11:21:47

I did lose stacks while breastfeeding, and I think I pretty much lived on chocolate muffins. BUT I did go for lots of long walks too as the damn child would only sleep when out for a walk.

WidowWadman Thu 24-Sep-09 11:40:21

Moschops - I must be a liar then.

Before pregnancy I was over 13 stone, my daughter is 9 months old and this morning I weighed just over 10.

I don't diet, but I don't eat half a tin of biscuits every day either. I eat normally without following weirdo green and red day rituals and don't use the car much. The majority of my weight came off because of the increased amount of calorie burning through breastfeeding.

To be honest, I don't think I would have physically been able to eat enough to stay fat.

WidowWadman Thu 24-Sep-09 11:42:45

(Btw my daughter is still not sleeping through, so sleep deprivation can't have anything to do with it).

Weight loss/gain is always based on burning more/less calories than you take in. Simple as that.

GwarchodwrPlant Thu 24-Sep-09 11:43:16

I lost all of my baby weight through breast-feeding, walking and doing Slimming World. I'm now half a stone lighter then I was before I got pregnant. DS is 1 year old now and I'm still feeding him so I can get away with eating more than I should! If you stick to a low-fat diet and include some good long walks then the weight should come off quite easily.

GwarchodwrPlant Thu 24-Sep-09 11:46:07

WidowWadman- I take offence at calling a very good weight-loss plan 'weirdo green and red day rituals'- it worked for me, if you weren't so ignorant then you would see it is a very good, healthy, nutritious plan that helps thousands of women reach their goal weight, none of which are 'weird'.

WidowWadman Thu 24-Sep-09 11:53:03

Sorry - if it works for you it's great. Whatever gets people to think about what they're eating (and there by reduce the amounts) is great, as long as it promotes a balanced diet. For me I don't need to follow a ritual, I guess I'm lucky.

I didn't call it "weirdow green and red days rituals" in order to claim that they don't help losing weight, I just said it to underline the point that I didn't/don't follow a diet at all.

'twas flippant use of language, but no offense was intended. I'm sorry that I upset you.

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