January 05, 2011

Tips to Drop that Pregnancy Weight

After reading my Free Nutritional Advice post, one of my readers asked a question on tips on how to lose her pregnancy weight.   I have never been pregnant before so I cannot talk from experience but I will give some general tips to lose weight.

1. Focus on eating whole grains.
Reason: by filling up on whole grains instead of simple carbohydrates, you are eating more fiber and protein and therefore will stay full longer and eat less overall.
  • Instead of white bread, try whole wheat.
  • Instead of white pasta, try whole grain pasta.
  • Have a bowl of oatmeal for breakfast.
2. Keep a food/beverage journal for three days including at least one weekend day.
Reason: by tracking what you are consuming, you can see how much you are actually eating.  Many people underestimate how many calories they are really taking in.  Also, by tracking weekend eating, this helps get a handle on how much extra calories you probably are consuming on the weekend. 
  • Make sure you write down exactly how much you are eating and how many calories it has.
  • Write down everything you consume including all beverages and supplements.
  • After the three days are over, take a look at your food journal and tally up how many calories you consumed.  Then, based on your height and weight, you can tailor your intake accordingly.
3. DO NOT drink your calories. 
Reason: For the most part, a drink does not fill you up.  When you consume a lot of calories in a drink, it is mostly a waste because you will be just as hungry as you were before.  For example, when you drink juice, you will not get filled up.  Instead, have a piece of fruit which has the juice in it along with many vitamins, fiber, and it will actually fill you up.  Also, besides not being filling, many beverages such as fancy coffee drinks contain as many as 700 calories which is way too high.
  • Drink low calorie drinks such as water, tea, coffee with milk, and if you must: diet pop.
  • If you are someone who loves milk, drink skim milk instead of whole or 2%.  You will shave off some calories and fat.
  • Try to limit alcohol as much as possible.  It is high calories and has virtually no nutrients for your body. 
Additional Tips:
  • When you are hungry in between meals, try drinking a cup of tea or a glass of water first.  You may just be thirsty.
  • Fill you meals with low calorie vegetables.  This is one of my favorite tips. It will help fill you up and make your meal bulkier and therefore you will feel like you are eating a lot more.  For example, add chopped onions, peppers, and celery to sloppy joe. I swear you won't be able to tell the difference.
  • This is a tip that I just recently learned myself.  Artificial sugars can sometimes just make you hungrier.  They trick your body to feel like it is getting sugar and then it actually craves sugar.  Also, it can make you very bloated which is never a good feeling.  Limit these as much as possible. 
  • Limit your sodium intake as much as possible.  It will make you bloated and feeling dehydrated. I recommend not adding any salt to foods because most foods have plenty of added sodium anyways. 
If you have any additional questions regarding this topic or any other topic, feel free to email me or comment on this post!

**Please note: All information presented here are my own opinions and what I learned through my degree in dietetics.  Please consult a registered dietitian or a doctor if you have any questions about if any of these tips are right for you.

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