Losing weight can help improve your chances of getting pregnant. It can also keep you healthy and active throughout motherhood. Follow these 12 steps to get you in the best shape you can be before you get pregnant!
- Pick A Goal Weight: The goal weight or the amount of weight you need to lose will tell you how much time it will take to lose the weight. Losing just 2 pounds a week is the safest way to lose weight and keep it off. Calculate your body mass index (BMI) to find out what your optimal weight is.
- Plan To Stop The Diet: Even though you are trying to lose weight for your baby, you will need to stop certain diets (crash diets or imbalanced diets) well before getting pregnant, and switch to diets that are more supportive of fertility and pregnancy.
- Establish Your Current Caloric Intake: If you are maintaining
your weight well, try establishing a current caloric intake. This will give you a number to start with when subtracting for weight loss.
- Then Decrease It: The most prescribed way to lose weight is to eat less than you are currently eating. There are many ways to cut calories, including replacing foods. Starting with your current caloric intake, subtract 1000 calories from that total. This is the number of calories you will need to consume every day to lose 2 pounds a week. For example, if you are currently consuming 2,500 calories a day, the goal is 1,500 calories a day.
- Increase Exercise: If you find you are not eating enough calories to subtract 1,000 a day, try adding in some exercise to burn away the rest. Subtracting 500 calories a day and burning 500 calories a day will work in the same way.
- Break Up The Exercise: Exercising at least one hour a day is an ideal plan for weight loss. However, most people don't have this much time and breaking up the workout is just fine. Working out for 30 minutes on weight training exercises before work and then walking with hubby for 30 minutes after dinner works just as well!
- Start Out Easy: If you are new to exercising daily, start out slow. The body will be sore after the first few workouts and this is often the reason people stop working out. Instead of slamming in an hour that first day, start out with 20 minutes (10 minutes, twice a day) and build from there.
- Add A Prenatal Vitamin: Before pregnancy is the best time to add in that folic acid you will need in the first weeks after conception. A prenatal vitamin provides all the support a mom-to-be will need. (Prenatal vitamins are safe for people who are not pregnant as well).
- Natural Supplements: Along with taking the prenatal vitamin, there is nothing wrong with adding certain natural supplements to your daily diet. Green tea is a proven natural fat burner, and research has shown that consuming green tea can increase metabolism.
- Join A Support Group: The buddy system has been proven to help people lose more weight and keep it off than weight loss attempted alone. Choices can include a weight loss support group or a friend who will keep you accountable. It's important to choose someone who will push you yet stick by you at the same time.
- Enlist The Help Of A Doctor: A family physician or even your OB/GYN may be able to help you lose the weight you need to lose before conceiving your baby, which can be in the form of a prescribed diet or possibly, a prescription appetite suppressant. However, any medications will need to be stopped before trying to get pregnant.
- See A Nutritionist: A nutritionist will be able to help you better understand the role of food in your life. Food is there to provide energy, not as a reward. Unfortunately, many people eat more than they need simply because it tastes good. This is a learned behavior and it can be modified.