Ways to tone the mummy tummy

New moms sure have their hands full. Getting rid of a post-baby belly only adds more stress. Dr Anu Sridhar suggests ways to trim the tummy

health

During pregnancy, it is common to have sudden food cravings for ice cream, chocolates, cakes and junk food which contribute to the ubiquitous mummy tummy. Soon after delivery, when the cute baby bump goes, most mothers want to get rid of the post-baby belly.

It is ideal for women to plan and return to their pre-pregnancy weight in a span of six to 12 months after delivery. .

Exercises

The exercises recommended for new moms include crunches like raising the leg and raising the head to tone the abdominal muscles. Cycling and swimming are good exercises to tone pelvic and abdominal muscles as well. Some women tend to experience leaking of urine with activities like sneezing or coughing. In such a case, they should make efforts to do Kegel exercises which revolve around contracting the sphincter around the urethra, which is the area from where the urine passes out of the body. While doing physical activity, moms need to keep themselves well hydrated lest the production of breast milk reduces.

Diet

Lactation is a very crucial phase in the life of a new mom. Successful lactation ensures a robust mother-baby bonding and lays a strong foundation for long-term mental and physical health of the baby through childhood. To maintain good milk production, new moms should drink at least two or three litres of water and ensure that their diet includes adequate amounts of milk. The lactation diet should be balanced with protein, fats and carbohydrates.

Flush it out with water

A new mom should keep herself hydrated. Drink lots of water as it will help you flush out unnecessary toxins. It also helps regain the fluid that has been lost during the production of milk.

Breastfeeding

Apart from providing the newborn with essential nutrients, breastfeeding can do wonders for the mom, too. It helps in losing calories that in turn help in reducing weight naturally.

(The author is consultant, obstetrics & gynaecology, Fortis Hospital)

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