The Ketogenic Diet and Pregnancy
The Ketogenic Diet: The Secret to Weight-Loss After Pregnancy?
Whether we as women like it or not, a big part of motherhood involves well… getting bigger. It starts when we find out we are pregnant, and the pounds slowly start to add up on the scale. Being pregnant of course is not where gaining weight is the problem, it’s after we give birth and beyond. Whether you give birth naturally or by way of a c-section, unless you are one of those lucky gals who remains thin and regains their figure, it is quite common for women to gain weight after having children.
As it turns out, there are biological causes behind why the postpartum woman’s body may want to hold onto calories. However, recent research has proven that this biological reaction indeed evolved, and weight gain after having a child is not actually linked to pregnancy itself. The weight gain so many women experience after pregnancy is actually brought on by lifestyle changes and choices that occur during motherhood. Additionally, thanks to nature, it is also an unfortunate and inevitable result of getting older.
Changing Poor Habits and Adopting a Healthy Lifestyle
Becoming a mother instantly changes a woman’s life. We believe that goes without saying. Not only do we take on a whole new role in life, but we are also now in charge of a little human’s life. Naturally, women tend to their children and that means we have less time to take care of ourselves. This trend ends up leading to poor meal choices, little to no exercise, and a lack of sleep.
There is good news, however. This does not HAVE to happen to you. While taking care of your family comes first, you MUST take care of yourself in order to effectively take care of others. So, how do we avoid weight gain after pregnancy? The answer is actually quite simple. By maintaining a healthy lifestyle and focusing on your goals, you can potentially avoid packing on those unwanted extra pounds. The first place to begin when you make this lifestyle change is with your diet.
How the Keto Diet Can Help You Maintain a Healthy Life During Motherhood
It is a fact that many women benefit significantly from adopting the keto lifestyle. In fact, it is a diet that benefits millions of people, male and female. However, it is important that you understand that the keto diet is different for women. For instance, it is smart to keep your hormones balanced, here are some tips on how to achieve maximum results from the keto diet while balancing your hormones.
- If your period is regular, try to remember to eat an increased amount of protein than normal during the three days prior to your period
- Remember that the weight you put on during your period is simply from water retention—it will go away
- Focus on eating more foods that are rich in probiotics. It will help to keep the bacteria in your gut in check
- Eat more foods that are rich in calcium. A good amount of calcium intake is not only good for you, but it can also help to reduce your PMS symptoms. Some good calcium-rich foods to enjoy include: salmon, green veggies like spinach, kale, etc, chia seeds, celery, almonds, bok choy, and okra
- If you tend to get UTI’s, try taking cranberry supplements. Keep in mind however that as you get deeper into the keto diet your body could heal and stop getting UTI’s altogether
- Take in more carbohydrates around the tenth to fifteenth days of your menstrual cycle
- Try and use only non-toxic beauty products. The toxic chemicals in some makeup can increase xenoestrogens and imbalance hormones
How Does the Keto Diet Work?
The keto diet is quite unique as it revolves around an entirely different food pyramid. Instead of focusing on calories you are focusing on taking in good fats, a medium amount of protein, and small amounts of carbohydrates. More specifically, the keto diet is a low carb diet that causes the body to produce ketones within the liver that is inevitably used as energy. In the end, your body reaches a state known as ketosis. During ketosis your body burns fat for energy instead of glucose, causing a vast array of benefits to your body and overall health.
Of course, starting a new diet can be difficult as we do not know all the rules and guidelines. Needless to say, it takes some learning and creating new, better habits before we truly understand the do’s and don’ts of the keto diet. For starters, let’s take a look at what you should and should not eat when you begin the keto diet.
Good foods to eat
- Meats/proteins: Beef, turkey, chicken, fish, lamb, seafood, etc.
- Leafy greens: Spinach and Kale
- Berries: Raspberries and blackberries
- Seeds and nuts: Almonds, walnuts, sunflower seeds
- Above ground veggies
- High-fat dairy: Butter and hard cheeses
- Additional fats: Coconut oil, saturated fats, fatty salad dressings
Bad foods to avoid
- Sugars: Honey, maple syrup, agave, etc.
- Fruits: Bananas, apples, oranges, etc.
- Tubers: Yams and potatoes
- Grains: Wheat, corn, cereal, and rice
To be more specific, your detailed daily nutrient intake should be made up of 70% fat, 25% protein, and 5% carbs. 20 to 30 grams of net carbs is specifically recommended for your everyday intake.
Changing Your Lifestyle and Enjoying a Healthy Motherhood
Motherhood should be the best time of your life. It should be built of fond memories, family vacations, merry Christmases, happy birthdays, and all the bliss and happiness a family is supposed to experience. However, for many women, gaining weight after having children is a real problem that can be difficult to combat; especially if you had a c-section. If you have tried other diets and workouts with no success, the keto diet is an excellent option for anyone looking to take their health and lifestyle seriously. After all, weight loss is only 20% exercise. The other 80% is dieting.
While it might seem like quite a challenge, in the beginning, adopting the keto lifestyle and getting your body into a state of ketosis is not all that difficult. In fact, it can be quite easy, especially with the addition of meal replacements with exogenous ketones. When your body is getting and producing a good number of ketones, you will begin to see that stubborn baby weight lessening more and more. If you are looking to lose baby weight and have had little luck with other diets, we strongly suggest giving the keto diet a go. It can’t hurt and you definitely won’t regret it!