Breastfeeding Can Help You Burn A Surprising Amount Of Calories

There are many benefits to breastfeeding your baby, but did you know burning calories is one of them? Yep, according to Healthline, breastfeeding moms tend to burn almost 500 calories per day (!!) just from producing breast milk. However, according to VeryWell Family, the total number of calories you burn while breastfeeding depends on a few different factors. 

First of all, how often you breastfeed plays a huge part in how many calories you burn. If you're mixing things up and feeding your baby formula as well as breast milk, you won't burn nearly as many calories as a mom who exclusively breastfeeds. Secondly, it also depends on how much milk you actually produce. In the simplest terms, the more breast milk, the more calories. And thirdly, the calories you burn when breastfeeding can depend on the age of your child because the older the child, the less breast milk they usually need.

Breastfeeding should not be considered a weight loss plan

But while some moms may be jumping for joy and think breastfeeding is the secret to losing weightHealth Digest warns that breastfeeding should not be considered a quick and easy weight loss plan. And The Guardian agrees, stating that breastfeeding only has a very small impact on weight loss, pointing to a review of five studies, which showed that breastfeeding moms usually only lost between 0.6kg to 2kg (1.3lbs to 4.4lbs) more weight than those who didn't breastfeed.

If weight loss is something you're worried about, you need to be careful as you don't want to affect your milk production. As Shannon Davids, MD, an OB-GYN at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital in Philadelphia, told The Bump, "We definitely recommend that mothers not go on a particularly restrictive diet — nothing that's lower than 1,500 calories a day, which wouldn't permit a robust milk supply." Ideally, you want to aim for a 1,800- to 2,200-calorie diet for good health and milk production.