Continuing with our quest to lose baby weight, let’s consider nutrition. Dieting isn’t actually all that technical. I think most of us know that, it’s the ability to stick with a diet and maintain the motivation we had in the beginning. For this reason its important to have a vision for yourself, have goals, and really step into the good feelings you will have at the end if you stick to your guns and pull it off.
Dieting to lose baby weight is a gradual process. Yes there’s that G word I used in the previous post. Initially, as I have already noted, your job should not necessarily be to limit calories straight off the bat, but rather become accustomed to eating healthy foods again. Chuck out all the junk and just enjoy whole foods for a while.
After a few weeks of adhering to this regime you can begin to further lose baby weight. The easiest means of doing this is taking your maintenance calories and eating about 3-500 calories under that number. That will definitely produce weight loss. The easiest way to approximate what kind of calories are your maintenance is to refer to the numerous calculators online. The best in my opinion is the Harris-Benedict formula (for women):
BMR = 447.593 + (9.247 x weight in kg) + (3.098 x height in cm) – (4.330 x age in years)
‘BMR’ here refers to your basal metaolic rate, which is pretty much the calories to maintain your body at your given weight, height and age. We then adjust THAT number by the level of activity that you do on a daily basis:
Little to no exercise Daily kilocalories needed = BMR x 1.2
Light exercise (1–3 days per week) Daily kilocalories needed = BMR x 1.375
Moderate exercise (3–5 days per week) Daily kilocalories needed = BMR x 1.55
Heavy exercise (6–7 days per week) Daily kilocalories needed = BMR x 1.725
Very heavy exercise (twice per day) Daily kilocalories needed = BMR x 1.9
Once you know what your calorie level is, you can subtract 3-500 calories from that, depending upon your weight loss goals.
You would then seek to tailor your carbs, fat and protein intake. I could diet breakup would be 40% of your calories from carbs, 30% from fat, and 30% from protein. Keep your carb sources clean, with slow burning low glycemic carbs such as oatmeal, brown rice, wholegrains, quinoa, and rye. Avoid sugar at all costs, there is no benefit whatsoever.
Similarly, opt for mostly healthy fats such as peanut butter, almonds, avocado, olive oil, salmon, and other fatty fish. Having said that, ensure you are getting a good amount of chicken, and red meat to meet your vitamin and protein needs. On that topic you should get most of your protein from whole food sources such as the meats suggested. You can supplement now and again with a protein shake or bar if need be.
That’s a quick fire guide to tailoring your diet to lose baby weight. In the future I plan to do a series of posts that will go in depth on the kind of diet I would follow whilst losing baby weight. Until then take care and stay healthy.