If I had a nickel for every time I was contacted by someone selling a product to “help new moms lose weight” I could afford to plaster this article on every billboard in DFW.
Do me a favor and think about the marketing you see surrounding postpartum bodies.
Shakes. Diets. Pills. Anything to SHRINK YOU.
Never mind the fact that you just created an entire human being from two cells. Birthed it out of your body. Are providing it with nourishment and sustenance.
Now you must be small.
Here’s why I refuse to entertain these calls/DMs/emails/conversations.
1. Not all pregnant, postpartum, or nursing people need to lose weight. (Most don’t).
2. There’s already enough pressure on womxn to alter their bodies to fit society’s standards of beauty. My office is not going to be another place where they’re bombarded with that message.
3. Most weight loss programs do nothing to actually address a person’s HEALTH. Being a HEALTHcare provider, that’s important to me.
I refuse to pass these pressures on to my patients and perpetuate all the issues that stem from this attitude.
A quick search of #postpartum on Instagram will give you #postpartumweightloss as the fourth result, as you see in this image.
Is weight a component of health? Yes. Is it the entire picture? Absolutely not.
As your healthcare provider, I’m MUCH more concerned with knowing that you are feeling strong enough to carry and care for your new baby. Mentally clear enough to care for yourself and connect with your loved ones. Balanced enough to maintain the stability of your spinal and pelvic structure.
These are my concerns for you postpartum. Your actual health.
Moving toward better health looks different for different people.
For one person it might look like water aerobics and juicing. For another person it might look like yoga and pasta. For yet another person, it might look like FaceTime with a long distance loved one, therapy, and a weekly walk in the sunshine.
If you are a fitness or nutrition provider - or other healthcare provider who has stuck with this post to reach this point and you’re wondering if I work with anyone who focuses on this area of health, the answer is YES. As long as they focus on the big picture of health, not a waist size, a number on the scale, a BMI, or any of those other measures that become counterproductive when they consume our entire focus.
If you’re a pregnant or postpartum person reading this, and you’re looking for this type of lifestyle help, allow me to recommend RESET by JEM. Jaquatta has one of the most holistic, realistic, and healthy outlook on wellness that I’ve ever experienced from a prenatal/postpartum fitness & nutrition expert.
If you are someone who is concerned strictly with the number on the scale or the size on the tag of your jeans - do whatever it is that you’re comfortable with. As in all things, I advocate informed choice in this arena as well.
I’m not going to try and stop you from pursuing an ideal that motivates you (unless I think you’re at risk of harming yourself, in which case we will have a caring, compassionate discussion because that’s my duty as a healthcare provider).
So while I won’t try and stop anyone from pursuing a different figure if that’s what makes them happy, I’m 100% not going to be an additional source of pressure for those who would rather not focus on their size or weight.