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Thread: Breastfeeding mom losing too much weight

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2008

    Default Breastfeeding mom losing too much weight

    Hello! I'm a breastfeeding mother of a lovely, active, and curious 10-month-old. I work full time, and my son takes pumped milk while I'm away. He's also having a wide variety of solids.
    I noticed after giving birth that my weight went back to pre-pregnancy levels fairly quickly and kept dropping after that. I just checked my scale and found that I am now five pounds below my prepregnancy weight. Now, 5-foot-3-inches and 117 lb. is not a scary weight by any means, but I know my body: my lightest adult weight ever was 114 after a bout of whooping cough, and I did not feel healthy until I'd gained a few more pounds.
    Thing is, I can't seem to stop the slide. There's just so much to do! In addition to my full-time day job, I write at nights. I do all the family cooking and most of the cleaning and childcare. I try to eat three meals and at least one significant snack (like a bagel and tuna fish...) every day, but can't always make it. Even when I do, I keep losing.
    I guess I'm looking for reassurance or advice on this. Are there high-calorie, healthy foods that could help me out here? Does this mean my son's taking too much milk/not enough solids? I intend to stop pumping when he turns one and start having his day care give him cow's milk and water when I'm not present--should I just hang on until then and assume I'll gain it back once I'm not breastfeeding full time?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2007

    Default Re: Breastfeeding mom losing too much weight

    I'm having a similar issue. I am 20 lbs less than prepregnancy weight and at 5'9 and 135 I had to pull out clothes that I haven't worn in 6 years. I've been trying to get my weight up to 140 but I eat alot and stay the same. I eat a healthy diet so I'm not going to worry about it and you shouldn't either. I think one factor is that I'm not eating junk food but that's a good thing. Avocado is a healthy high fat food. You could try eating an extra time in the evening if it is really important for you to gain weight. Adding a drink like ensure would also give extra calories. It's what they usually use in the hospital for people who are not getting enough nutrition.


  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2006

    Default Re: Breastfeeding mom losing too much weight

    I wouldn't worry about your son having too much milk, but you may want to add some more calories into your diet. Try to keep some kind of healthy snack with you (in your purse/diaper bag) all the time, so if you feel snacky when out and about you can have something. Keep snacks on hand when nursing or pumping. It doesn't have to be complicated- I dropped weight very quickly post-partum and felt I was loosing too much, so I'd have cheese and crackers and a piece of fruit when nursing. Another good option is to make yourself shakes with yogurt (whole milk), fruit, and whatever other additives (protein powder, peanut butter, etc.) that appeal to you.

    Mama to my precious girls, Abigail and Naomi

    "When we consider that women are treated as property, it is degrading to women that we should treat our children as property to be disposed of as we see fit." - Elizabeth Cady Stanton in a letter to Julia Ward Howe, October 16, 1873. Recorded in Howe's diary at Harvard University Library.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2006

    Default Re: Breastfeeding mom losing too much weight

    Hi, and

    I`m in the same boat. I know many mommies are struggling to lose weight, but there are a few of us with the opposite. My prepreggo weight is 127 and 5.4. Currently, I weight 118 lbs but the lowest was 114.

    I eat like a horse so your weight loss might not be connected to how much you`re eating. But be sure to eat healthy, high calorie foods. I second avocados. I also like oatmeal, bananas, yogurt, granola. Not sure if they are high calorie foods or not ( never count calories), but they are healthy and don`t need much preparation.

    If you are worried about your health, please call your doctor. They can help you figure out ways of getting you back to your desired weight.

    Mommy to a busy toddler

    "He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep in order to gain that which he cannot lose."
    Jim Elliot

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Maryland suburbs of DC

    Default Re: Breastfeeding mom losing too much weight

    Such great suggestions! I was going to say avocados and lots of cheese or yogurt, too.

    Also, if you don't have nut allergies in your family, nuts are another portable, good-fat laden food.

    My pre-preggo weight at the beginning of my 2nd pregnancy was the least I've weighed since high school! (even less than the winter I had pneumonia!), but I'm back at the same weight now that I was at this point in my first pregnancy, so your body will make up for it. Just make sure you're eating healthy foods, oh -- and keep taking those prenatal vitamins so you don't miss out on any other things your body needs (especially calcium!)
    My boys (both hypnobirths!):
    N 12/24/05 - birth center baby; nursed until Dec. 2007
    G 3/21/08 - we had a wonderful homebirth!!! - still nursing

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Sep 2007

    Default Re: Breastfeeding mom losing too much weight

    I'm going through the same thing too. I gained 40 lbs with this baby and lost that plus 10. Definitely the least I've weighed since high school (wish the body looked like I did in high school ) I get all the comments from parents and in laws abt how I need to eat and be healthy. I am trying! I am more healthy now that I think more abt what goes into my body. I know it's just what my body does when I bf bc I did with dd as well. And it all came back after dd weaned. I'm just choosing to enjoy eating this go round. I need to start exercising more so I feel better. I keep saying after ds is sleeping better... Hopefully soon!
    <a href=http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d189/sherllie/KateandOwenthumbnail.jpg target=_blank>http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d1...nthumbnail.jpg</a>

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2007

    Default Re: Breastfeeding mom losing too much weight

    Me too! I am now 12 lbs below my "normal" pre-pregnancy weight. It happened with DD also, who is now 3 years old. As we began solids and she began sleeping through the night-- therefore nursing less, it all came back on. I was exactly the same weight when I got pregnant with both girls. So, don't worry, just eat when you are hungry.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Dec 2007

    Default Re: Breastfeeding mom losing too much weight

    I wish I was in your shoes. I am a fitness guru so when I got pregnant I made sure to only gain what I needed to and stayed in the gym during the entire time. I didn't gain much baby weight, but I gained TONS of water weight. Now I lost the water weight, but I am having the hardest time loosing the last 15 pounds of baby weight. I work out. but still those last few pounds.
    Exclusively and every minute of it!!
    SAHM Magic Mama to Rowdy
    Born 10/13/07 ALL NATURAL
    9lbs 10 oz, 21" long

    Excited about becoming a LC!!!!!!

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    in flip-flops

    Default Re: Breastfeeding mom losing too much weight

    I think what you are doing sounds fine but it is important to get enough fat, protein and calories (as well as nutrients). I would suggest some dense foods like avocado, eggs, dairy products, nuts, coconut and meat to help you keep going strong. Cod liver oil would be a great supplement for you as well (vits A & D, EFAs/Omega 3s). One thing DH & I are doing that's working out great is mixing up smoothies with all the "good stuff" in them that we can sip on all morning. We use the Magic Bullet and fill up the mugs all the way so it's a lot of stuff. For example: 1/2 avocado, 1/2 banana, 4 strawberries, yogurt/kefir (I don't measure), milk, 2 eggs, coconut milk or oil, probiotics, and honey. HTH!

    L e i l a, married to hubby, loving our "bock-ee" kinda girl, 6.23.06
    Learn about the prepuce before you have a boy.
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  10. #10
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Where the Wind Comes Sweepin' Down the Plain

    Default Re: Breastfeeding mom losing too much weight

    Take snacks and a drink with you wherever you go. In my diaper bag, I keep granola bars (good ones like the ones made by Kashi without lots of sugar or corn syrup), nuts, whole grain crackers like Wheat Thins or Triscuit. We tend to get wrapped up in "Do I have the 10,000 things I need for baby?" in order to leave the house and not much else. I try to balance protein with carbs, which makes me feel good. The carbs give me energy and the protein sustains me.

    I also had to make a habit of having things to graze on available in and around the house such as yogurt, string cheese (which are also great for on-the-go), and Ensure shakes in the fridge for quick, nutritious extra calories. Sometimes, I go to the old stand-by of Saltines and peanut butter.

    Be good to yourself. (Are you still taking your pre-natal vitamins?) I lost weight quickly and not on purpose. Even though I was eating healthfully, I was eating only about a third of the calories my body needed and I was beginning to feel like passing out. It was to the point that for a while, I had to drink a shake when I was nursing my son in the middle of the night so that I wouldn't be so depleted of energy when I got up in the morning.
    **Margaret**(the artist formerly known as mommamags) Mom to red- and curly-headed, blue-eyed, chunky-thighed Michael Thomas, 24 May 2007, 9 lb/22 in. As an infant, he was my little suckling pig. Now he's a total ham!!!

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