After the arrival of your little baby, you might have noticed that your body has changed a lot, especially in shape. It’s important to note that it is very normal to gain baby weight while pregnant.
But now that you’re no longer pregnant, having a belly pooch can be very frustrating. Unfortunately, despite popular belief, getting rid of your post-pregnancy pooch can take some time.
However, it is possible for you to shed the post-pregnancy pooch and become even fitter than before. The important thing to understand is that losing your post-pregnancy weight will entirely depend on how active you were before and how active you are after the pregnancy.
Here is everything you need to know about the post-pregnancy pooch and how to treat it:
What is the post-pregnancy pooch?
Post-pregnancy pooch, belly pooch, or mommy pooch are terms used to describe the bulge that appears in the middle of a mother’s belly after delivering the baby. Unfortunately, it can be very hard to predict whether or not a mother will develop the bulge after delivering her baby and how bad it will get.
This will all depend on a mother’s anatomy, which won’t be certain until their pregnancy comes to an end. It might interest you to know that the post-pregnancy pooch is usually caused by the weakening and stretching of the rectus abdominis muscles, commonly known as the six-pack muscles, and the tissue holding them together.
This connective tissue is called the linea alba, and as it weakens, the mother’s abdominal muscles will end up separating along the midline. Depending on the mother’s anatomy as well as the degree of abdominal separation, the internal organs will end up protruding or bulging out, thus creating the post-pregnancy pooch.
What is the difference between post-pregnancy pooch and diastasis-recti?
The condition that occurs when the mother’s abdominal muscles separate along the midline is called diastasis recti. When a woman’s belly grows during their pregnancy, the stomach muscles end up separating vertically, which creates a gap down the midline.
Consequently, this leaves only a thin connecting tissue holding all the internal organs inside. It’s important to note that the same pregnancy hormones that usually cause the mother’s ligaments and joints to loosen can also weaken the connecting tissue.
This means that diastasis-recti occurs in all women who have a post-pregnancy pooch. However, with that said, not all women with diastasis-recti will have a bulge in their belly. This will entirely depend on the degree of abdominal separation as well as the mother’s anatomy.
But, most mothers will find out that the gap will reduce on its own after the pregnancy. Additionally, some studies have indicated that more than 40% of mothers still have abdominal separation six months after delivering. It’s important to understand that the diastasis-recti that goes beyond six months won’t reduce on its own. This means that you have to be very active and maintain proper care to treat it.
This condition is very common among mothers who have a weak core before pregnancy, who engage in heavy abdominal exercises during the second and third trimesters, and those who begin heavy abdominal exercises immediately after delivering.
Post-pregnancy pooch among mothers doesn’t only result in diastasis-recti, but it can also lead to poor posture, lower back pain, pelvic pain, hip pain, as well as pain during regular movements.
On the other hand, untreated diastasis-recti can lead to hernia, constipation, urine leaking, and pelvic organ prolapse. For this reason, it is very important to learn about post-pregnancy pooch and diastasis-recti and the best way to correct them.
Effective ways of treating post-pregnancy pooch
Drink more water
One of the best approaches to treating post-pregnancy pooch is by drinking more water. Drinking water helps hydrate your body and makes it even more elastic. It also helps in burning down calories more efficiently, which is a great way of keeping your skin healthy and tight.
For this reason, you need to avoid being dehydrated after delivering your baby. Dehydration is not good for your body, especially if you’re looking to shed that post-pregnancy pooch.
It might come as a surprise but, despite breastfeeding being a healthy food source for your baby, it can also help you lose that post-pregnancy pooch. Breastfeeding can help you lose up to 500 calories every day.
This is attributed to the fact that all the excess calories are transformed into breastmilk when you’re breastfeeding. For this reason, mothers who breastfeed their babies more often are in a better position to lose their post-pregnancy than those who don’t.
If you’re looking to treat that post-pregnancy pooch, you need to ensure that you use different creams and lotions which contain collagen, Vitamin C, E, K, and A. This is because these creams and lotions are good for your skin as they’ll help with tightening your skin, especially after delivering.
You can also apply these creams and lotions to improve blood flow in your body. For the best results, ensure that you do this at least twice every day.
Chances are that you won’t be able to lose that post-pregnancy pooch by simply sitting down on the couch. For this reason, you need to set a few minutes aside every day to exercise. By easing back into your fitness routine post-partum, you can help reduce the time it’ll take to get rid of that post-partum pooch. It’s important, however, to engage in exercise and other activities only when your body is ready.
It’s best to seek your doctor’s advice on the best time to begin exercising your body. This is because rushing your body into training will only take a toll on your body instead of helping it. When your body is ready, consider trying out cardio and aerobic workouts as they’re good for strengthening your muscles and burning up calories.
Losing your post-pregnancy pooch won’t be so easy if you do not lead a healthy and active lifestyle. However, following the above tips will help you lose that belly fat, and you’ll bounce back to your normal self within no time.