How to Lose Weight While Nursing

After carrying around extra weight while pregnant, most women are desperate to lose the weight once the baby arrives. If you're nursing, however, it's very important to understand how to take care of your body and how to provide enough nutrients for your growing baby. You can certainly lose weight while breastfeeding, but you need to make sure to do it the right way.

Have Perspective

First of all, while women want to lose weight and fit back into their clothes after having a baby, it's very important to have perspective. This is a crazy time in a woman's life and she may have a lot of hormonal changes and other adjustments to make. If you find yourself eating more chocolate, or you can't seem to make yourself eat well at first, give yourself time. It took nine months to put the weight on, and it's going to take awhile to take it off. Diets are not recommended for nursing moms, but there are some other ways that nursing women can lose weight.

Nursing and Losing

Nursing, itself, is a great way to lose weight. Nursing burns about five hundred calories a day. You can also start to enjoy light exercise between four and six weeks postpartum. You need to get a doctor's permission before beginning any exercise, but once you've gotten this permission, you can enjoy activities with your baby.

Exercise with Your Baby

There are many great ways to exercise while enjoying your baby. You can begin to take a walk each day and to put the baby in the stroller. Bring along a sling or baby carrier, as young babies tend to want to be held a lot. There are many post partum yoga classes, pilates classes and other exercise classes that you can do with your baby. See if there are classes of this sort in your area - or purchase a video for use in the home.


Make sure that you focus on your diet and try to eat well during this time. You want to eat many fruits and vegetables, have moderate proteins and avoid too much fat. In general, breastfeeding moms do lose weight faster than do those who bottle feed. Keep in mind, when you weigh yourself, that you'll have about three extra pounds due to your nursing. This is weight that will stay with you until you finish nursing, as your breasts are larger and full of milk. You'll want to eat about 1800 calories a day. Try not to go under 1500 and remember to drink a great deal of water throughout the day.

Enjoy this time in your life and enjoy your shape. You are helping another human being to develop and are nourishing the future! That's an incredible accomplishment, even if you keep a few extra pounds on your body while doing so. The weight will, eventually, come off and you'll have a beautiful, healthy baby to show for this time in your life.

Chat with other moms about the benefits of breastfeeding by going to our forum.