Everybody knows that exercise is important when maintaining a healthy lifestyle and following a healthy eating diet plan. Regular exercise can reduce many illnesses such as cardiovascular disease and can promote psychological well-being of mothers.
On the Lose Baby Weight forums many women have asked when is it safe to start exercising after having a baby and is it safe to do so whilst breast feeding? Women fear that their babies won’t get enough milk because exercise can potentially alter the supply of milk. This is a myth.
breastfeeding_and_weight_lossMany studies over the past 20 years have examined the effects of exercise on the breast milk supply. Not only did they find that it does not affect the supply but it also improves the mother’s well-being on many levels. A breast feeding review by Lovelady (2011) suggested performing 45 mins of exercise a day, 5 days a week improved the women’s fitness levels.
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However she found that if women restricted their calorie intake whilst breastfeeding, their bodies went into starvation mode and the women did not lose weight and had decreased energy levels. This is why the Lose Baby Weight healthy eating plans recommend adding calories (500 per day) for breast feeding mothers. Exercise also increases bone strength which is reduced during lactation.
Studies on breast milk composition pre and post exercise have showed that babies prefer the breast milk pre exercise rather than post exercise. The post exercise milk had an increased lactic acid in it. Lactic acid is naturally produced during exercise. Lactic acid is not harmful to babies. Overall babies still breastfeed normally post exercise and a baby’s weight is not affected. Also exercise does not affect the immune factors, vitamins and minerals naturally occurring in breast milk.
Maternal well-being is very important post-partum. Postnatal depression is a serious mental health issue and affects many women post birth. Studies have found that women who exercise regularly either have decreased amounts of having postnatal depression and women who already have it improve quicker. This is due to the increase of ‘happy hormones’ produced by exercising.
How many of you feel great after exercising? This is because when we exercise we produce serotonin and endorphins. Exercise also improves sleep quality and social support when women exercise together or are part of a group such as Lose Baby Weight.
If you are considering starting an exercise routine, our 28 day Challenge exercises are easy to follow and can be done in the comfort of your own home. Click here for your FREE exercise sampler
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Although the demands of family life can limit exercise time, having a small walk with or/without baby allows the mother to have time out and refresh her mind. Getting out with a pram or baby wearing is one way or another way if you have toddlers is go to the local park and walk laps around the park while your children play.
Daley et.al (2012) studies 170 breast fed babies whose mothers exercised moderately. All the babies in the study had normal weight gains compared to the same babies in the control group.
The important advice to remember when exercising and breast feeding is it’s important to return to exercising when you feel you are well and you have approval from your doctor and/or physio. If you didn’t exercise much prior to having your baby then it’s important to start slow. Wait until your breast feeding is well established and start with brisk walking up to 45 minutes per day, 5 days a week. Once you are comfortable at this point then you are ready to start exercising on the Lose Baby Weight plans.
It’s also important to be aware that your ligaments are still loose post having a baby due to hormones, so if you are feeling pain or discomfort during exercise back it off or try a different exercise. See the post baby exercise dvd recommended by Lose Baby Weight. Be mindful of your pelvic floor and make sure an exercise related to this is incorporated into your exercise regimen. Also make sure you wear an appropriate supportive bra and drink lots of water.
Daley, A., Thomas, A., Cooper, H., Fitzpatrick, H., McDonald, C., Moore, H., Rooney, R., Deeks, J. 2012. Maternal exercise and growth in breast fed infants: a meta-analysis of randomised control trials. Paediatrics 130(1): 449-453
Lovelady C. 2011. Balancing exercise and food intake with lactation to promote post-partum weight loss. Proc Nutr Soc 70(2): 348-55
Written by Ali Pickles, Midwife
If you are considering starting an exercise routine, our 28 day Challenge exercises are easy to follow and can be done in the comfort of your own home. Click here for your FREE exercise sampler
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Every month on the 28 Day Weight Loss Challenge, we run a BRAND NEW 28 Day Menu with a different theme so you NEVER get bored! Next months theme is the SLOW COOKING! – Perfect for the chilly winter weather and still just as healthy.
If you are curious about the 28 Day Challenge recipes then we have a 28 Day Challenge recipe pack for you to try HERE.
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Find a delicious range of healthy recipes, packed full of energy boosting ingredients and nutrients together with easy to achieve exercise.

About the 28 Day Challenge

A few key things to note are:

  • The Challenge menu is FULLY customisable
  • You have access to over 1700 exclusive recipes
  • You have access to over 300 exercise routines
  • Meals are family friendly and are made in under 10-20 minutes

For a limited time, we are offering you a HUGE DISCOUNT on the lifetime membership discount on the 28 Day Weight Loss Challenge – you can see this awesome offer here.

Here are some INCREDIBLE results from mums on the 28 Day Challenge.

Tawhai lost 50kg* with the 28 Day Challenges
Shelli has lost over 22kg* with the 28 Day ChallengesShelli
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– See more at: https://www.losebabyweight.com.au/aimee-feels-amazing-in-wedding-dress-after-her-weight-loss-of-33kgs/#sthash.MhzysKh2.dpuf