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Breastfeeding = Weight Loss

April 25, 2007

So everything that I’ve read says that breastfeeding is a great way to help new moms lose some of that baby weight. I think the research shows that breastfeeding moms burn an average of 500 extra calories per day.

I’m not sure the science behind it, but personally I think the reason that breastfeeding moms lose the weight faster than those who don’t is because they have no time to eat. It has absolutely nothing to do with calories burned, rather it has to do with being attached (literally) to your new baby for approximately 18 hours per day. And Lord help you if you have a toddler (as I do) that you also have to care for.

I used to think that it was tough to find time to eat a decent meal while entertaining an almost two-year-old all day. I got used to eating cold meals and left over chicken dinosaurs. Now with a newborn to also care for, I am realizing what a luxury chicken dinosaurs really are.

Now back to the breastfeeding dilemma. The lactation consultant that I met with earlier this week suggested that I nurse for 15 minutes on each side and then pump for 15 minutes. That means each feeding will take approximately 45 minutes, well actually it’s closer to an hour by the time you get situated, feed the baby, burp the baby, put her somewhere so that you can pump. Then you have to get the pump ready and keep your toddler entertained during the entire process. By the time it’s finished you have less than an hour before the whole process is supposed to start again. During that brief respite, you go to the bathroom, play with your toddler so she doesn’t feel completely left out, start the laundry, empty the dishwasher, clean up the dog poop so that your toddler can play in the back yard during the next feeding session, clean up the toys so that the aforementioned dogs don’t steal the toys and bury them in the backyard, and if you are lucky you get a chance to brush your teeth.

Now reading that did you see where mom has time to eat or take a shower? Nope, you didn’t because that time doesn’t exist! So next time someone tells you how wonderful breastfeeding is lean in real close so that they can get a good whiff of you while listening to your stomach growl as loud as the biggest, meanest grizzly bear and tell them that you’d gladly change places with them for just 24 hours. Of course once that 24 hours is over, you might smell good and have a full tummy but you’ll be so eager to get back to your baby that forget about all the hunger and stinkiness and pop out your boob to start the process again.

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