Did You Gain or Lose Weight After Breastfeeding?

by Dagmar Bleasdale on July 20, 2009

Did You Gain or Lose Weight After Breastfeeding? DagmarBleasdale.com

Did You Gain or Lose Weight After Breastfeeding?

Breastfeeding is the best diet I’ve ever been on, yet a lot of women tell me that they feel like their bodies are holding on to weight they can’t shed because of their breastfeeding.

My friend Karen warns me that I should be very careful after L self-weans — she put on the pounds real quick by eating like she did when she nursed her boys.

Women who breastfeed their children burn about 500 additional calories a day, that’s why I believe I get away with eating what I want and keep my weight down.

On the flip side, another theory is that nature makes moms hang on to a few extra pounds while they are nursing so they’re able to give their child the needed nutrition in emergency situations — I guess that’s what is happening to some moms.

Both theories make sense to me, so what is your experience?

  • Did you lose or gain weight while breastfeeding?
  • What happened after you stopped breastfeeding?

Do I have to worry about turning into a flabby walrus, or can I look forward to losing a few more pounds after L weans?

For more information and resources on breastfeeding support, check out my Breastfeeding page.

Take advantage of this amazing free offer! They also make amazing baby shower gifts!

{ 72 comments… read them below or add one }

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Elise April 21, 2014 at 4:18 PM

I was always a super tiny person that could eat and drink whatever I wanted…until I got pregnant. I started out 123 pounds. Lets just say I stopped weighing myself at 175 pounds ,and I still had two weeks to go. My baby self weened at 5 months, and I pumped for about a month after to try and keep it going for as long as possible. I am 30 pounds overweight now and have no idea how I even got that heavy in the first place! It is so depressing. I am hoping that when I am all dried up that I just won’t be as hungry anymore and I can finally diet and try to lose this weight! I feel like I didn’t drop any weight breast-feeding at all- but its hard to tell because I am just so huge period. :(

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Jessie February 13, 2014 at 4:30 PM

I lost my baby fat super quick and was told that I looked slimmer than before I got pregnant. After nursing for 3 years, I weaned and put on about 10-15 pounds even though I stopped eating so much and try to work out often. Its been 6 months post weaning and I’m still having trouble losing the extra weight. :-(

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Aurora T. Agee October 12, 2013 at 9:53 PM

I was about ten pounds under my pre-pregancy weight a couple weeks after giving birth. I pumped and bf’d for about 7 months and maintained that weight. About a month after I weaned I was back to my original weight. So not terrible, but I was hoping that 10 pounds would stay off.

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Sweta September 9, 2013 at 8:47 AM

I stopped breastfeeding my child after 3 years. When she herself stopped. Yes I wasn’t skinny but holding the same prepregnancy weigth but for past 6 months after I stopped breastfeeding weight gain is terrible. I gained 20 lbs and now I started working out to control it. An also going for a health checkup too to check whether its not because of any other reason.

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rochel June 30, 2013 at 12:54 PM

my daughter is 3 months old nw,i had a c section delivery.i have been xclusively breastfeedng,but no weight is shedding off.i gained 24 kgs during my 1st pregnancy.pepl say breastfeeding reduces weight bt i feel all the more hungry with each feed.plus i feel i still have swelling on my face nd hands too nd probably in entire body.is it my water weight????will it go evr???

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Whitney August 20, 2013 at 3:33 PM

Hi Rochel: I was the same, C-section and breastfeeding exclusively, and it wasn’t until month 6 that the weight began to fall off. Hang in there! I was getting incredibly frustrated around 6 months thinking I would never loose weight but I did.

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Reeta May 18, 2013 at 9:54 PM

I have gainde 3 kgs within a month after stopping breastfeeding. I do exercise almost everyday and eat healthy but the weight is increasing. It’s frustrating in many ways. Oh God! I hate being fat……….too bad for my health.

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Keshia May 8, 2013 at 1:46 PM

I lost all my baby weight and was down to a size 12 (I never was a tiny girl) while nursing but weaned and completely stopped at 19 months. Since then I have gained about 6 lbs and has been so so hungry! I’ve now been more on top of what I eat cutting my portions..Although I’m always hungry I fight it. I’m a yoga girl and I’ve bumped up my core strength yoga to 4-5 days a week (knee pain is too severe for high impact) so I’m fighting the flab! I hope I win.

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Dagmar Bleasdale May 8, 2013 at 9:39 PM

Keep at it, Keshia! Thanks for your comment. It’s impressive that you do yoga that often. I bet you are in better shape than me :)

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Yonah March 30, 2013 at 1:13 AM

Before getting pregnant I worked out 4-5 times a week and ate healthy weighing in at 128 lbs. Once I got pregnant all hell broke loose, I ate what ever I wanted (potato chips) and forgot the way to the gym. I gained about 30 lbs and was very worried it would be tough to loose it. Breastfeeding was my secret diet. I was down to 130 lbs after 8 weeks and with every growth sprout my little boy had another 4 lbs would shed off (and the best part was that I was still eating as if I was pregnant). after 5 months I was down to 114 lbs and could fit into that pair of jeans I bought when I was 20 that was hiding in the back of my closet. Once I started weaning I gained about 5 lbs back.
Now that i’ve stopped breastfeeding I am definitely watching what I eat and know I need to hit the gym very soon. My body is still very skinny, but not fit with no muscle and I can fill all my new cloths starting to get snug. The down side is that my breast are non existing, from a C cup im pretty much flat chested now. Im hoping to keep my new figure for at least several months, after that I plan on getting pregnant again.

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Rachael March 22, 2013 at 2:23 PM

I nursed both of my children until they were 2. Combined with a healthy diet and a good amount of exercise, I easily lost all my baby weight while having a small bowl of ice cream 1/4 cup almost each night. Then I stopped breastfeeding. Holy moly, I gained weight. And now I can’t lose it no matter how healthy I eat or how much I exercise. Breastfeeding was the best thing for fat loss- oh how I miss it!

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Anupriya March 10, 2013 at 1:05 PM

I lost all my pregnance weight with-in a year of my daughter’s birth. Owe it to breastfeeding. I could maintain till I fed her – about 18-20 months. And then I stopped feeding her and bang in a span of 2-3 months I gained 3 Kgs!! :-((((.. God has given a magical way to reduce baby weight by breastfeeding..

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kim January 29, 2013 at 10:42 PM

I am with Teresa…. I put weight on after nursing my children. I too am at a loss of what to do. I have been about 140lbs. my entire life…. no increase in exercise or diet seems to make a difference. The only time I have been able to lose the extra 10-15 lbs. (I have been trying so hard to do for years) is when I am breastfeeding. I just finished nursing my daughter at 15 months back in October. I started gaining slowly while I weened her, but as soon as I stopped breastfeeding, BAM an automatic 10 lbs. on in like a 2 month span. It really sucks!!!!! Would love to be able to figure out what changes for me while nursing and keep it going….. Lord knows I don’t want to breastfeed the rest of my life; although I can’t lie, the thought has crossed my mind! :-) Good luck!!!!!

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LJ January 20, 2013 at 3:41 PM

With my first I gained 60 pounds while pregnant. He was 10 lbs and i lost about 10 the first 2 weeks. Then i had to give up dairy bc he had some kind of intolerance to the dairy protien in my milk (from the dairy i ate). It took nin months and i was pre-pregnancy weight while still nursing.

With my second baby i didn’t have to give up eating dairy while nursin him. He was 10lbs when he was born and even after 14 months later i still didn’t lost any weight nursing, AT ALL, even though i started lifting weights and cardio classes at my gym 4 days a week when he was 6 months old. Once I weaned him, all the sudden the weight started to come off like maybe a pound a week. So i definitly hold the weight while nursing.

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Addie January 12, 2013 at 12:59 AM

I’ve always been thin but of course when I became pregnant I gained a few pounds. I was 108lbs in the beginning of my pregnancy, at the end of my pregnancy I was 150lbs. I breastfed my daughter and when she was 9 months I was already down to 120lbs. As of today she is 22 months and I’m still breastfeeding and I weigh 100lbs. So I definitely lost weight while breastfeeding…

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Theresa January 8, 2013 at 2:58 AM

I lost all my baby weight right away and then some! felt awesome about myself, I had NO idea that all the weight would come back! I gained almost 20lbs this past year(I weaned a year and 3 months ago). I could cry! I thought I was alone but I am finding this has happened to others. Im at a loss at what to do!

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sarah davis December 29, 2012 at 7:20 AM

I’m going to wean in the next 3 months or so and I’ve been terrified that I’m going to gain a ton. Over the past year I’ve gotten into the habbit of eating whatever I want thanks to nursing. Gotta fix that habit!

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Errol November 23, 2012 at 8:41 AM

That pic is too cute! Love babywearing tots! Love babywearing in general, ha!

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tebeth July 15, 2012 at 9:47 AM

I am on my second child and both times I have gained extra weight while nursing. Everyone says you get skinny from nursing, but both my experiences are the exact opposite. With my daughter, I was a size 12 after birth for about a month. Then I got up to an 18 and maintained that size til i weaned her at 9 months. In the months following, the weight began to come off. It took 14 months but i went from a size 18 down to squeezing into a 14. But then I found out I was prego again. Was a total bummer for me. I was almost down to pre-pregnancy size (10). Now with my son, I chose to nurse knowing it would make me fat. I am now a 20 and staying at this size. I love my son, but I cant wait til he weans so my body will start to lose the weight its holding onto.

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christy September 10, 2012 at 2:38 PM

I have kept and even put on weight bfing… I believe my body is not only holding on to the weight for extra stores… but my baby is a baby that will only nurse 4/5 times a day, but wants to nurse for LOOOOONG periods… I go to the park with my oldest and end up sitting on my butt nursing the whole time. I spend about 5-6 extra hours per day sitting on my butt nursing. I have gained 60 lbs and feel like crud but bfing is more important than weight loss and will just have to happen when my baby turns one. With my 1st I hung on to the weight until I quit nursing, then I lost all the weight and then some!

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Marla July 5, 2012 at 1:31 PM

I lost the weight after my daughter weaned, but she weaned when she was 4 so I honestly can’t say if the weaning had anything to do with it or if I just felt a bit more motivated after we were finally all done. :)

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Beth June 26, 2012 at 12:02 PM

I bf both of my sons. With my first, I weaned him at 18 months and held every pregnancy pound (minus actual baby, placenta, etc.) until I stopped bf-ing. Carefully watching what I ate and being active kept my weight status quo at this point. I could gain…. just not lose no matter what I did. My weight dropped quickly after I weaned DS 1 – by quickly I mean in several months… but quick by proper diet methods. I just weaned my youngest at 18 1/2 months 4 days ago and am anxiously waiting to fit in my clothes again!! It is so bittersweet. I loved breastfeeding more than I can even express (no pun intended, ha!). I feel great about myself as a mom in that I gave both of my boys a great start with bf-ing and think I have hit a point where I need to feel great about me (physically) again too… (Though I still have a great deal of mommy guilt somehow!) It is so hard to know what is right sometimes – I want both! :(

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Maggie June 23, 2012 at 7:03 PM

I nursed my three year old twins until they were four months old. The last twelve pounds did not come off until I stopped nursing, but thy came off almost immediately after I stopped. I am now six weeks into nursing my new baby, and I am once again hanging onto that twelve pounds no matter how healthy I eat and even with running five days a week. I am hoping I will lose it once I am done nursing and am trying to be patient, but it’s frustrating watching the scale stay the same when I put so much effort into being healthy.

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Dagmar June 23, 2012 at 11:27 PM

Hi Maggie, hang in there. I bet it’s frustrating, but there are so many health benefits to you from breastfeeding, keep that in mind. You won’t nurse forever, why not take advantage of this wonderful benefit to your health and your child’s for as long as possible? The pounds will come off again :)

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Jane June 9, 2012 at 7:05 PM

Hi I have three children. Bf the first two and now bf third baby. Despite getting back quickly to running and weights at gym after having first two babies, I did not lose one pound. I was jogging with the baby in buggy pounding the roads to no avail until I stopped breastfeeding. Now on third baby same story. Fingers crossed weight comes off again once bf stopped. My sister complete opposite…only place she sees exercise or gym is in a dictionary. She is bf and weight fell off. She says it will go back on once she stops feeding as this was her experience with first child. Seems varied for everyone.

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Bree May 30, 2012 at 11:32 PM

I lost weight while breastfeeding each of my boys, but it was a slow loss both times (10-12 months). However, each time I was able to get back to a lower weight than my original pre-pregnancy weight of 130 lbs, closer to my ideal weight (I’m 5’2″ and for my frame 115-120 lbs is just right). However, since I tandem nursed my boys for about 3 months (they’re 30 mos apart), and was forced to wean my baby at almost 2 yrs old (to take a medication not approved by Dr. Hale for bfing) I had not completely weaned in 4.5 years, so while the medication caused some weight gain, I also had some post-weaning depression, and some emotional turmoil about the circumstances (cancer treatment) that led to weaning about a year earlier than I had anticipated. For 4 months after weaning my weight was relatively stable at 125 lbs, then in less than 3 months I gained 15 lbs, and have been miserable. (Again, mostly related to the estrogen re-uptake inhibitor I take now, but also some stress-eating.) I think I’d have been able to keep my weight close to 125 lbs without that, but I don’t know how the post-weaning depression alone would have affected my weight.

I’m not sure that this will be helpful to others, but it was encouraging to me that even though weight loss took a long time, with the combination of making good nutritional choices and breastfeeding, with a little bit of chasing a toddler (and then two!) around, I was able to get to a healthy weight. I hope other moms will hang in there while the weight loss is slow, as it’s such an incredible gift to both mother and child to be able to breastfeed.

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Dagmar May 31, 2012 at 12:13 AM

Hi Bree,

thanks for your comment! My weight came off slowly as well, but steadily. I weighed less at my lowest than I weighed before I got pregnant. After three years of nursing I slowly started putting weight back on, I assume because he nursed so much less.

I couldn’t agree more: “I hope other moms will hang in there while the weight loss is slow, as it’s such an incredible gift to both mother and child to be able to breastfeed.”

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Jackie May 30, 2012 at 9:24 AM

Even if i wanted to stop i cant hes too demanding !!! Maybe when he sleeps through the night or self weans i always wonder how i would have looked like if i didnt breastfeed… I remember crying of how horrible my stomach looked and my dr is like breastfeed it will go away & it did all of it as if i worked out and i eat allllll day! Hopefully i dont lose more though it would be scary lol

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Erica May 30, 2012 at 3:40 AM

I lost a lot of weight after having my first daughter, I bf her and lost more than I gained..I was also 19 years old. My son I gained 46 lbs and only bf for a month…never lost all the weight. 2 years later I became pregnant with my daughter, I gained 23 lbs with her and lost all of it in 3 weeks with bf. But I was hoping to lose more like my first pregnancy. I’m 30 now and my daughter is 5 months old. I’m 20 lbs over weight and really trying to shed these lbs. maybe after bf I an lose it. It is a great diet for some but like me my body as changed and. Think it has to do with my age. Bf is best for baby…I keep reminding myself to keep it up and worry about myself later.

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Jackie May 28, 2012 at 11:21 AM

My son is 8 months old and i have always exclusively breastfed, before i got pregnant i was 102 and im 5,1 i gained fifty pounds in my pregnancy and now im always between 115 and 118. but i lost it all too fast its so hard to keep up with calories because my metabolism is so fast!!! I love nursing him and i plan to untill he self weans. i didnt mind staying even 130 i liked it!!! & now im afraid ill just keep losing! it could be my age also im 21 so maybe that has a lot to do with it. i hope when he weans i can gain at least a little more = D while everyone is wishing to lose im here wishing the opposite lol.

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Sinead May 24, 2012 at 4:20 PM

I have been breastfeeding now for 9 months and currently weigh less than I did before pregnancy. I eat whatever I want and I continue to lose, especially if I am very active. I don’t want this to stop. I feel like a teenager again! Also wondering what it will be like when I wean. I am assuming I will have to go back to my old ways of watching my portion size and cutting out the sweets…

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Sarah Day May 20, 2012 at 4:53 PM

I was told that nursing moms drop baby weight quick! My experience was the exact opposite. But my concern was with the production and quality of my milk, so I brushed off the fact I was retaining the extra weight. It has been a slow process, as I weaned myself (read that explanation below). I took it slow and as I did, I realized that I was eating near carelessly. I had to start to pay extreme attention to what was going in my mouth. I am now post “nursing” and am trying to get the energy and drive to get over my plateau. I am still about 10 lbs over my pre-pregnancy weight but I am the most uncomfortable I have ever been with my body. I am hoping to make some movement forward soon.

I nursed my daughter until I went back to work, at which point I pumped and froze my milk for my daughter until she was about 11 1/2 months. She stopped accepting my breast, so I chose to continue feeding her stored milk. In doing so, I became a milk factory and was pumping out 40 + oz a day, which I believe is more than my baby was consuming but it worked out. I still have plenty of stored milk (now a month later) and feed her a mix of cow’s milk and my own.

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Dagmar May 20, 2012 at 11:20 PM

Wonderful that you have been able to keep giving her your milk!

I have gained some weight since L slowly self-weaned and wanted less feedings/milk, but I think that has more to do with being less active because of all my blogging. Be patient with yourself, and I bet the weight will come off :)

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Jane May 6, 2012 at 7:36 PM

I gained more weight then I should’ve due to my sciatic nerve being compressed and working fulltime until the day I delivered. Which ended up being 47 pounds. I lost 25 of it in the first 2 months fairly easily, breastfeeding, light exercise. After the second month it just stopped. I picked up exercising to 5-7 times a week, and I started gaining weight. I tried cutting calories and continuing the exercise, but that ended up affecting my milk supply. I’m in my fourth month and still weigh the same as in my second month and quite depressed that nothing has worked and I don’t think I’ll lose any more weight until I wean the baby.

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Dagmar May 8, 2012 at 12:10 AM

Hi Jane, I think it’s natural to lose quite a bit of weight right after the birth, makes sense since you can deduct the baby’s weight, water weight, etc. I think losing 25 pounds in 2 months is amazing! But don’t be fooled, that isn’t a natural weight loss. It took you 10 months to put on 47 extra pounds, it’s going to take more than 4 months to lose it.

Give yourself that time. Eating healthy and maintaining your milk supply for your baby is more important than fitting into your old jeans fast. You’ll get there. I hope you will stay with breastfeeding and don’t stop just because you hope to lose the extra pounds. There are so many health benefits to breastfeeding for your baby and you, I hope the thought of that will encourage you to keep going. You are doing the best you could possibly do by breastfeeding at this point. Hang in there :) I am still nursing my son a bit but I have been putting on the pounds whereas breastfeeding was a great way for me to lose for three years. I’m not happy about it, but it won’t make me stop nursing my son for the few minutes a day he still wants to.

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karen April 30, 2012 at 2:35 AM

BF 1st baby for year. Put on a stone when stopped breastfeeding. Became pregnant 2 months later…
Put 7 pounds on, had 10 pound baby, was a stone and half lighter than when conceived 2nd baby!
BF 2nd baby for 10 months. Put on 8 pounds…(hope cycle continues!)
Health visitor said metabolism speeds up once realises not breastfeeing anymore and so mine probably did that whild i was pregnant with second.

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kyle March 21, 2012 at 2:26 PM

I picked up 30kg whilst preg . Lost 22kg while breastfeeding and eating right
And exercising but then for 2 months my weight stood still and I just couldn’t manage to lose the last few. As soon as my baby weaned himself at 11.5 months I lost the last 3kg in two weeks.

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Brittany March 4, 2012 at 11:54 PM

I have been breastfeeding for 11 months now. I am stopping now, starting the weaning process. My experience with breastfeeding is that it makes me store fat and not lose weight. I have tried working out, changing my eating habits. nothing works. I still look round like i’m pregnant. I am hoping my weight sheds when I stop breast feeding!

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Tara February 22, 2012 at 2:08 PM

I went from being pregnant with my son to breastfeeding him three months into my second pregnancy with my daughter. I didn’t lose all the weight breastfeeding him and I am holding onto about 15lbs that I can’t get rid of no matter what I do since having my daughter.

I am pretty active, I eat healthy and I am very conscious of portion sizes. I have never had a hard time losing weight before and I am convinced I am just one of the women that holds onto weight while breastfeeding. My daughter is almost 10 months now and I will be weaning her at 1 year. This extra weight needs to go!

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Jen November 1, 2011 at 10:23 PM

I weighed 118 before I became pregnant with my son. During my pregnancy, I gained about 25 lbs. By the time my son was 4 months old, I was back to my pre pregnancy weight. He’s 8 months old now, still breastfeeding and I am down to 113 lbs! I’m always hungry and thirsty, eating all day long, but don’t gain a pound. Instead, I lose several. I LOVE nursing my baby, but I am definitely looking forward to weaning him off soon and gaining those pounds back!

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Genesis Rico August 26, 2011 at 11:21 AM

I nursed my 2nd child until he turned one. I lost all my baby fat and more by just breastfeeding and weighed 121, now that i have stopped nursing i gained up to 12 pounds! i have tried everything workingout atleast 40 min. a day, i constantly watch what i eat and nothing i mean nothing helps!!Why?!?!?! i really miss breastfeeding!!! :(

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Jodi August 25, 2011 at 3:33 PM

I just stopped breastfeeding last week (after doing it for 11 months) and gained 4 pounds!!! Help! What can I do to stop this?

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Angela (Toucan Scraps) May 25, 2011 at 8:26 AM

I lost some of the pregnancy weight during breastfeeding but not all of it.

After I stopped breastfeeding I started gaining weight and needed to reassess my eating and exercise levels .

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Kacey May 25, 2011 at 5:28 AM

I have steadily gained during the 3 years I’ve been nursing my son because I am constantly STARVING. Now that my boy is working towards self-weaning I’ve found it much easier to control portions/snacking, that (and a new exercise program+calorie counting) has the extra pounds finally melting off. I’m hoping that that will continue once he fully weans.

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Becky May 1, 2011 at 5:11 AM

Ugh…I hold the weight! At first I was doing good, but I feel like all I want to do is eat. I don’t lose, I don’t gain. I guess I am doing right for my kiddo, but I want to have a better self-image. ::sigh::

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stephanie March 24, 2011 at 8:18 PM

I lost 30lbs by week 6 after having my daughter while I was breastfeeding. I have not lost a pound since….despite the work outs, hot yoga, eating healthy etc. My body INSISTS on lugging around an extra 15lbs…. Then, I started to supplement her breastfeeding with formula around month 6 and guess what… every week as my supply lessens…..a pound comes off! Take what you want from that experience, but I believe once I stop breastfeeding completely, I will get back to my pre-pregnancy weight (and not a moment before then.)

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Barbara March 2, 2011 at 7:03 PM

I’m so glad that I’m not the only one. I’m holding on to 10 extra pounds while breastfeeding. I plan to stop at a year which would be July 2011. I’m exercising and not overeating and the weight is not budging. It’s frustrating, but now I understand why. I have something to look forward to after I wean and that’s getting back into my old clothes! I’m enjoying my time with my baby though so it is worth the extra weight!

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Karen February 21, 2011 at 10:19 AM

Hi,
I just had to put in my two cents on this. I always have observed a good diet and exercise, throughout my pregnancy and during nursing. However, during nursing my body has insisted on an extra 12 -14 pounds and there’s absolutely nothing I can do about. I have tried everything. Working out lightly, and extremely strenuously. Dieting…you name it. Nothing works. So…I am certain that for some people…obviously not all…it’s just nature’s way. It’s definitely a deal breaker for me as I have to get back to working(I am a performer) and I have gone the maximum time I can stand…(9 months).

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MelissaJenna October 16, 2010 at 5:31 AM

I exclusively breastfeed my 11 week old; I dropped all 30 pounds of my baby weight by week 6, and now I’m actually 3 pounds under my pre-pregnancy weight. I don’t really go out of my way to “work out,” but I will carry her around in the Ergo carrier for an hour or two every day while I do housework. I’ve kept very good eating habits since early in my pregnancy, so I don’t know if that helps. I feel as if breastfeeding is actually taking the fat OFF of my body, which is pretty awesome. They should tell more women that losing fat is a possibility– I bet more women would breastfeed!

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Hannah @A Mother in Israel.com August 30, 2010 at 5:17 AM

I was at my heaviest after weaning my second-youngest. While tandem-nursing I was used to eating huge portions, whenever I was able to fit them in. Fortunately I was able to cut back on the portion size and lose weight, once I became aware (thanks to good genes and healthy habits instilled by my mom).
-Hannah

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Cynthia Carpenter August 4, 2010 at 2:12 PM

Its tough when you are hanging on to the baby weight but nature knows what she is doing. Breast feeding usually cause you to burn more calories too keep healthy nutrients going to your baby. If you are hanging on to excess weight maybe take a trip down memory lane, how were your eating habits before birth and how are they now? A lot of changes take place with the birth of a baby. Be patient, keep well and congratulations
Cynthia at fittvo.com

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melissa March 26, 2010 at 3:31 AM

I’m not losing weight while breastfeeding. I have a 2 month old and lost 35 pounds within my first 2 weeks after having her but the last 15 will not come off! I have been a size zero my whole life and I’m also small boned so all my friends were like, “oh you will lose it so fast breastfeeding, don’t worry about it”. But they’re wrong. I’m going crazy because I run on my treadmill 3-4 times each week and watch what I eat and this last 15 pounds will not budge. I never even watched what I ate before I got pregnant and now it seems like my metabolism is completely shot! What’s going on??? Is my body storing it until I stop breastfeeding? But even then 15 is too much for that.

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Lucy Mae February 14, 2010 at 2:28 AM

I’ve tried various low-carb, low-calorie, and low-fat diets for the past couple of years. Although the Atkins diet is very popular, it made me feel somewhat unhealthy.

The diet plan I’m on right now is the Medifast Diet. The caloric intake is roughly 800-1000 calories. However, it doesn’t make my body feel weak. It is a bit of a pricey diet, but there are plenty of coupons available on the internet. You should never pay full price.

My advice is just choose a diet plan which your body reacts positively to. No one knows your body better than you do!

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DoozieMom November 16, 2009 at 7:16 AM

I always get down to my pre preggo weight about 8 months after baby is born… I tend to bf 1-2 years (i am #4, 15 months in) Am now below pre-preggo weight (finally) and will prob plateau after she stops (unless I hit the gym)

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Jay November 16, 2009 at 8:29 AM

Pre-preg I was fit and healthy, weight was excellent without any trouble. Both my babies were very huge and close together, so I put on about 25lbs with each preg. Breadtfeeding did not help me lose weight at all, and just as I stopped nursing the first, at 7 months, the weight dropped off overnight just before I got pregnant with my second. I’d gotten back to pre- preg weight in a matter of weeks. Currently nursing second, 6 months in and have not lost any weight yet…

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Kayce November 16, 2009 at 7:31 AM

I only gained 18 lbs during my pregnancy (115 to start with) so when my daughter was born I was down lower than before I got pregnant.

I nursed for 9 months and lost about 10 lbs. Once I weaned I lost the boob weight so I dropped another 3 or 4. After I weaned it took me about 18 months to put on the 7 lbs I needed to get back to a healthy weight and not underweight anymore.

I didn’t have to exercise or anything until I wanted to put pounds back on about 8 months ago and am not more trim and lean. I did keep on a tiny layer of flab until I worked it off getting more weight.

I do know some people that put on weight the entire time they breastfed and once they weaned they were able to finally start losing the baby and breastfeeding weight.

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toni October 19, 2009 at 8:19 PM

When I weaned my daughter at 15 months, I lost about 3 pounds. I was already at a good weight but I could tell that breastfeeding made me hold on to a couple pounds. I felt like I carried a thicker layer of fat all over my body, which I think was healthy for me while breastfeeding. And a portion of the weight I lost from my boobs, they went from a good size B to a small A again! I miss my boobies :(

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brookleen October 19, 2009 at 7:42 PM

I have gone down two sizes, maybe three, smaller than before I was even pregnant and my baby is 7 months. Joe has food sensitivity to milk and/or eggs and so when he was 3 months I stopped eating both. The OB said that nursing women that give up dairy lose a ton of weight. Prepregnancy I was 158 and now I am 130. That’s a lot, because my body liked to hover at about 145 even when I am very fit.

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Elizabeth K. July 27, 2009 at 5:31 AM

My daughter is now 4 months and I feel like breastfeeding should be burning more fat off my you-know-what! I still have about 15 pounds to go to be back to pre-pregnancy. I read in a magazine that breastfeeding could cause you to hang on to about 5 extra pounds of water weight… I keep telling myself that those 5 don’t count so only 10 more pounds to go!

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Laura July 22, 2009 at 8:14 PM

I’ve gained weight because I am on birth control.

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Frelle July 22, 2009 at 5:23 AM

I lost loads of weight while breastfeeding all 4 times. However, I put a little back on after a year each time because of the drop in frequency of nursing and amount as my baby became a toddler and started eating more food. I have gotten pregnant while breastfeeding 3 times so far, so I have never come to the end of nursing before getting pregnant to comment about that. Just wanted to tell you how its been for me!

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Summer July 21, 2009 at 4:22 AM

I have no clue. I’ve gotten pregnant either right after breastfeeding or while still breastfeeding, so I haven’t had any in between time to find out. I know it helped me lose the pregnancy weight easily, but not all of it.

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Nicole July 20, 2009 at 6:57 PM

I lost 20 lbs of pregnancy weight in the first 3 weeks after my daughter was born, about 15 of it in the first week. And now, 6 months later, I’m at the same weight. I did fluctuate up about 5 lbs when I had low milk supply issues, but seem to have dropped it again once I started Motilium and daughter was getting fed more. So, I haven’t seen any of that weight loss you’re supposed to get from breastfeeding, but I know that it helps because if I “stop” my weight goes up.

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Firefly July 20, 2009 at 2:49 PM

To begin with the whole thing I gained more than I should ever while pregnant. While breastfeeding I lost 20lb and that was it, but from 50 + gained that was nothing. Which puts me into the category of I really didn’t lose weight while breastfeeding, but as you said I did allow myself to eat some things I probably shouldn’t.
Now after breastfeeding is a different story (for me at least) first month or so I gained like 5lb, but from that point on everything started going down. So this puts me into the category of losing lots of weight after stopping.
I think it all depends on a person, you probably should cut back or completely on some foods we could indulge while breastfeeding.

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Dorothy L July 20, 2009 at 5:45 PM

I would say that each woman is different and her bodies breakdown of calories is different.
Although in order to say whether or not breastfeeding does indeed help with weight loss…you would have to take a group of women and have them on similar eating plans and exercise plans to be accurate.

Personally I am not nor have I ever been a heavy person or fan of food and I have breastfed 4 babies. I cannot say that with either that I lost weight faster than if I had not breast fed.
I do know that with every pregnancy I gained less because I had a few already keeping me busy before and after the new baby arrived:)

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Fran Magbual July 20, 2009 at 11:44 AM

I definitely gained weight when I stopped breastfeeding my son…I’d say a good 10 pounds.

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Toni July 20, 2009 at 3:07 PM

I lost a good amount of the baby weight in the first couple weeks after the birth, but a good 10 pounds hung around until the 1st year. For me breastfeeding made me hold on to some of the baby weight, but I think that weight had a purpose. Once I started weaning it started to fall off and then I was back down to my pre baby weight!

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Kristy Moon July 20, 2009 at 2:37 PM

I only got to breastfeed my daughter for around 3 months. During this time I continued to lose weight and afterward I kept losing weight. I had almost got down to my normal weight before I found out number two is on his way. I plan to breastfeed this new one once he is here and I believe that it helps you lose weight.

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Pure Mothers July 20, 2009 at 5:54 AM

I didn’t gain weight while breastfeeding. I just didn’t lose all the pregnancy weight. I think breastfeeding helps shed some pounds quickly after childbirth. I lost 30 pounds really fast. But the other 20 I gained is still hanging around. I’ve exercised and I always eat a healthy diet and nothing. I got my labs done (hormone testing) and my cortisol is a mess. My naturopath said that when you don’t get sleep your body holds on to stored fat. She likened waking up abruptly several times each night to a baby/toddler’s cries to a lion chasing you. Your cortisol levels elevate and the last thing your body needs to do is lose weight if you’re about to be eaten by a lion! We co-slept for 4 months, then had the crib in our room for 2 and at 6 months D was in his own room. So you’d think I would be more rested since I didn’t have to “get up”, but no way – I am still exhausted. He didn’t sleep through the night until he was 22 months old though. Then the canines cut – and now he’s in a cast wanting more attention.:-) He’s almost weaned. I have to leave for 5 days on saturday to find a new home in London with my husband and I can’t take him b/c of the cast. Our morning nursing will end. Bittersweet. We’ll see if I drop the weight or if the lack of sleep will still keep it on. I will be your test subject.

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