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Losing weight after a c-section may take a little more time than after a vaginal birth, as the recovery period is often longer. Fortunately, there are some habits that women can adopt even during the recovery phase that may result in weight loss. Though most women are not advised to work out strenuously for at least six weeks after surgery, they are typically encouraged to start walking soon after the operation, which can result in both faster recovery and healthy weight loss. Making the choice to breastfeed is another way to start losing weight while still healing, as women burn extra calories doing this. Of course, having a diet high in fruits and vegetables and low in fat can also help.
Most women find it difficult to move at all just after a c-section, much less exercise regularly, but it is important to start doing so soon after the operation. This is because some motions, such as standing and walking slowly, can help speed up recovery. Women working on losing weight after a c-section should start exercising gradually, starting with walking around the house a few times per day. As this becomes more comfortable, they can begin taking short walks around the neighborhood, which should become longer over time. Once the body has fully recovered, about six weeks postpartum, women are advised to check with a medical professional to make sure that they can begin more strenuous exercise routines.
One of the best ways of losing weight after a having a baby by any method is breastfeeding, as this act is known for burning about 500 calories per day. It is one method of weight loss that can be started during the hospital stay and typically requires no extra equipment or cost. It should be noted, however, that some women do not lose the weight until they wean their baby, so those who do not see immediate weight loss should not be discouraged. Additionally, it is often necessary to take in extra calories and fluids, as breastfeeding can result in significant hunger and thirst.
Of course, women who eat healthy will likely notice weight loss even after adding calories to their day due to breastfeeding. In fact, losing weight after a c-section often requires healthy eating in general, including plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables. While fiber is often good for losing weight, c-sections usually lead to excess trapped gas, which fiber tends to make worse; this means that women should keep their fiber intake low at first. Avoiding refined sugars, drinks that contain calories, and most desserts can also help.
@dfoster85 - Drinking lots of water is especially important if you are breastfeeding! You can't produce milk if you don't have enough fluid.
Taking care of yourself during the postpartum period will help your recovery, which ultimately will help you get back in shape. No point in exhausting yourself and making your recovery harder! Get all the rest you need. If you have other children at home, especially young ones, make sure that you have plenty of help with them so that you can get enough rest.
Once you are ready, you can start doing some very gentle stretches--things like neck rolls and arm circles lying on your back. I had a video by Erin O'Brien that I really liked for this period. The gentle movements helped loosen me up so that I was ready to start exercising once I got my doctor's OK.
If you're wondering how to lose weight after a c-section, the first step is to drink tons of water! The first fifteen or twenty pounds that you will lose are mostly water weight. Drinking a lot of water, counterintuitively, will help you to flush all that excess fluid out of your system.
If you had a c-section after being in labor for a long time, like me, you might find that you swell up terribly afterwards from the fluids you may have received. Again, drinking lots of water helps with that, and so does making sure you move around.
Don't be a martyr on your pain meds! If a second Percoset is what you need to get out of bed and move around, I personally think it's worthwhile. And they do say it is safe for breastfeeding. To me, it seems silly to try to shot yourself on pain meds if you wind up actually lengthening your recovery.
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