Things to keep in mind while planning to lose weight post-pregnancy

Increase in pregnancy age

A few days back when I was reading this newspaper article which talked about fertility rate in India in comparison to both, rural and urban populations. There were a few very interesting facts that came out: 

  • AFertility dropped after the age of 30 in the urban population whereas it increased in rural. 
  • A steady decline of fertility from 5 points to 1.7 points from 1975 to 2015
  • The mean age of childbirth is somewhere around 26 right now which is expected to rise with the coming time.

Issues with pregnancy these days 

  • Infertility rate is increasing year on year and data says, about 27.5 million couples in India are suffering from infertility.
  • Not knowing much about pregnancy – how to eat right or how to care more. 
  • Most of the urban females also worry about weight gain during pregnancy 
  • Stress is also a major factor in issues related to pregnancy.

How important it is to exercise during pregnancy.

Research says if you exercise about 20 mins daily during pregnancy then your baby is going to be fit and Healthy. Besides this, there are other health benefits as well. For example, exercises may help you undergo normal delivery too. 

During pregnancy, females with more belly fat and growing belly size also undergo Diastasis Recti, in which the central belly muscles split up and are not able to hold the joint positioning. Due to Diastasis recti, many pregnant females also end up having back pain too. 

This condition can also lead to post-pregnancy lost belly fat which many females do not appreciate. However, here I recommend exercising regularly a mild to moderate workout routine so that you are able to maintain strength, stamina, and endurance. 

Here is a list of exercises that can be followed during pregnancy: 

  1. Cat and Camel exercise: This exercise helps to stretch the entire length of erector Spinae muscles of the back as well the abdominal muscles. 
  2. Child Pose: This position relaxes your back muscles totally. This posture also helps you to position yourself in a comfortable position so that your back comes in a neutral spine position and helps you ease out the tension in your back. 
  3. Bird dog exercises: Bird dog exercise helps you to strengthen weekend glutes group, hamstrings muscles at the back of your thighs as well as your core muscles which include your belly, your back and your sides muscles. 
  4. Mild to moderate strength training workouts: Simple exercises like biceps curl, Tricep extension, Shoulder press, Front raise, Mild bent over rows and lats pull down with lighter weights can easily be performed during pregnancy. 

Eating right during pregnancy: 

Out of most of the macro and micronutrients, you need to increase your daily calcium and proteins intake to meet the need of growing fetus. Also, the right blend of macros and micros works just the best. Try to avoid having access to carbohydrates as that may lead to an increase in fat for both, the baby as well as the mother. 

Dairy Products: Dairy products contain two types of high-quality protein: casein and whey. Dairy is the best dietary source of calcium and provides high amounts of phosphorus, various B vitamins, magnesium and zinc.

Legumes: Legumes are rich in fibers and many different micronutrients such as Vit B9 and folate. Legumes are also rich in calcium so it will further help in providing good nutrition for baby’s better growth. 

Chicken and eggs: Both will serve as good sources of protein. As proteins are called building blocks of the body hence will help in facilitating the growth of the baby. 

Salmon fish: Salmon fish is rich in Omega – 3 fatty acids which have EPA and DHA. Both these components help in the development of the brain fo the child. 

Berries and Green leafy vegetables: These and sources of adequate amount of fiber in the diet and along with that also provide other micronutrients too. Should surely be included in the diet. 

Why do females gain weight during pregnancy:

The major reason why females end up gaining weight during pregnancy is overeating and eating the wrong proportions of food. During pregnancy, the requirement is increased by almost 25% as now the pregnant woman has to eat for the child as well as for herself. 

So, many times when females get hunger pangs, they end up munching on things that are easily available like cookies, chocolates, snacks, namkeens, etc. All of them are rich in carbohydrates and fat both and end up making them gain a lot of weight during pregnancy. 

In such cases ideally one should start with increasing protein intake in the diet and along with that start with increasing calcium-rich food like Dairy products, creamy soups, Green leafy vegetables, seafood, beans, etc

Whats is the issue with belly fat 

Generally belly fat is the most stubborn fat is what we say. However, there are many reasons why people find it tough to lose belly fat. 

Now, let us understand what basically happens during pregnancy. During pregnancy, the body has to make space for the fetus to grow. Therefore, the belly muscles, they over-expand because of which the center part of the belly, which composes of the 6 pack abs muscle known as Rectus Abdominis, it opens up. This opening up of rectus abdominis muscle is called Diastasis Recti. 

The gap that is created at the center further weakens the belly muscles, hence the belly becomes flabby post-pregnancy. So, therefore we need to train these muscles back into its previous strength so that the belly muscles tighten up and reduce fat from the belly. 

How to get rid of losing belly / post-pregnancy belly 

We can do alot more to reduce this belly fat. Firstly we work on getting in a regular exercise routine. Post-pregnancy if you had a normal delivery, you can always start working out immediately. In the case of c-section, ideally, we recommend first start with brisk walks and after 3 months can start with basic isometric exercises begin with. 

Here is a list of few exercises that can be done at home for losing weight post-pregnancy: 

  1. Cat and Camel exercise: This exercise helps to stretch the entire length of erector Spinae muscles of the back as well the abdominal muscles. 
  2. Child Pose: This position relaxes your back muscles totally. This posture also helps you to position yourself in a comfortable position so that your back comes in a neutral spine position and helps you ease out the tension in your back. 
  3. Bird dog exercises: Bird dog exercise helps you to strengthen weekend glutes group, hamstrings muscles at the back of your thighs as well as your core muscles which include your belly, your back and your sides muscles. 
  4. Mild to moderate strength training workouts: Simple exercises like biceps curl, Tricep extension, Shoulder press, Front raise, Mild bent over rows and lats pull down with lighter weights can easily be performed during pregnancy. 
  5. Basic Plank: Do not attempt Plank directly. Should first start with knee planks first. 
dr sneha chopra

Sneha is a passionate entrepreneur, who believes in frugality and minimalism. She holds her roots in spirituality. She is a fitness enthusiast, a marathon runner, holds a physiotherapy degree & nutrition is her second love after fitness. She is on a mission to help 1,00,000 people live longer, be healthier & lose weight using the ketogenic diet. She is a ketogenic diet expert and a health educator. She would like to help you in your journey of achieving great success, longevity & prosperity by improving both your internal game (mental wellness) as well as your external game (methods to achieve your weight loss goal.

To connect with her, take this body assessment test and we will schedule your free appointment: https://calendly.com/fitpiq/15min

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