POSTS WITH TAG: postpartum recovery

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    I can't stand it when celebrities say they aren't working hard to lose their baby weight, but by the same token most of us simply can't live on lettuce and treadmills alone, like our girl Beyonce, and Kim Kardashian's Atkins diet, though it may be working brilliantly for the future Mrs. West, doesn't seem like a practical option for any hot-blooded Italian girl who refuses to give up her pasta. 

    That's why I am loving Jessica Simpson's weight loss plan. It's novel, it's refreshing, it' boring and normal. 

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    I've lost some weight recently, thanks in part to a gym class that involves flipping giant tractor tires as if we're all deranged Real Farmwives. While I'm thrilled to see actual muscles tentatively emerging here and there from my flab-reserves, I'm dismayed at what is happening in my thorax region. Specifically: my breasts. The lower the number on the scale drops, so go my boobs. What I'm saying is I'm dealing with some pretty serious gravity/deflation issues, and soon I imagine I'll have to shovel each breast into its bra cup with a kitchen tool of some kind. Perhaps a spatula.

    This is an aging thing -- I'll be 40 next February -- but I suspect it's also a body-ravaged-by-children thing. Bizarre things happen during pregnancy, and despite what all those celebrity "HOT BODY AFTER BABY!" articles would lead you to believe, some of us never completely recover.

    To illustrate my point, I've put together 7 visuals to tell the tragic process of my OWN body after baby.

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    Let the rest of the world obsess over losing the weight after having a baby. You have more important things to focus on, like your baby -- and a number of other postpartum changes to your body that could be more serious than a few extra pounds. "It's a massive physical challenge" to have a baby, says Jessica McKinney, director of the Center for Pelvic and Women's Health at Marathon Physical Therapy and Sports Medicine, in an article that looks at several postpartum challenges women face. The little aches and pains you feel right after birth may not be temporary. Untreated, they could grow into larger problems.

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    My pregnant wife, Randi. Placenta inside.So, what’s it really like to ingest your placenta?

    I’m so glad you asked!

    After our son Sam was born (August 29, 2013, 3:09 a.m.!), we prepared for my wife to eat the placenta. The plan was to take it home, powder it, have it put into capsules, and then for my wife to consume it. Why? During our hypno-birthing classes (more on that another time), our instructor had told us about how placental capsules may ward off postpartum depression (PPD). My wife had terrible PPD after the birth of our first child, Stella, and we would do anything to avoid that. Even something as seemingly kooky as this.

    [Warning: You will see a graphic photo after the jump!]

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    How did you feel about your body right after giving birth? For most of us, pregnancy and childbirth leave us feeling like our bodies have been "ruined," or at least altered in ways we're not altogether thrilled about. But what if we could change that? What if we could see our post-baby bodies as powerful and beautiful? Pinup and boudoir photographer Ashlee Wells Jackson has made that her mission. Her 4th Trimester Bodies Project is a series of photos showing mothers' bodies in all their post-baby glory, seeing them through a loving, empowering lens.

    So how did a pinup photographer end up focusing on post-baby bodies, anyway? We talked with Jackson to find out what her inspiration was and what these photos mean to her subjects.

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    New moms eating their own placentas is nothing new, but popping placenta pills? That's right: Placenta pills, made from dried placenta and usually prepared by a doula, are the latest in earthy maternity trends. But while the concept of frying up a placenta with onions is more of a tradition (you know, in the "circle of life" sense), placenta supplements supposedly deliver myriad health benefits, from easing postpartum depression to increasing milk production to lowering blood pressure. Much like synthetic hormone prescriptions, except not synthetic (obviously), and sort of "tailor-made" for your own personal needs, presumably. Of course, it's not quite as inexpensive to consume your placenta in pill form as it would be in the raw, so to speak -- approximately $200 vs. $0.

    So are the capsules worth it?

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    Prince George's Grandma Carole MiddletonEveryone knows the days and weeks following childbirth are a special time when new moms catch up on sleep and maybe a favorite daytime TV program or two. We munch on delicious healthy snacks made from organic sunflower seeds, and awaken each morning to a content newborn, homemade fruit smoothie, and packages of cashmere baby sleep suits sent by wealthy friends who have the courtesy to not visit two weeks postpartum, when every body part south of a new mom's collarbone still feels like it’s on fire.

    Did I just describe your typical mom? Hell no. But this is postpartum reality for Kate Middleton, thanks to her super awesome mom, Carole, who is helping the Royal Couple big time. 

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    It wasn't until after my fourth child was a toddler that I realized I had experienced Postpartum Depression (PPD) after the birth of each of my children.

    I'm a smart person. I read all the books and knew all the signs. Or so I thought.

    Looking back now, I wish I had done something more than just assume what I was feeling was "the baby blues." You know, I thought it was normal to cry at the drop of a hat and feel anxious about leaving the house.

    So not normal at all.

    I'm pretty sure if I had known more, I would have gotten help. And maybe those early months would have been better, for me and my family.

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    OMG. If you're wondering what the hell happened to your sex life since your baby arrived, then I've got some great news for ya. The reason you aren't getting down and dirty with your hubby as often as you'd like isn't because he doesn't love you or isn't attracted to you.

    Nope. According to a study published in the Journal of Sexual Medicine, dads have a lower sex drive after a newborn enters the picture. Almost one in five new dads reported not getting it on for a good three months after junior made his arrival.

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    When the topic of breastfeeding comes up, it's mostly regarding the controversy surrounding nursing your baby in public or how to get your baby started at the breast and successfully latched on. And of course how long is too long for a mother to breastfeed her baby thanks to that Time magazine cover. What isn't talked about much is the link between breastfeeding and depression. Yes, there's a link. And it's not about being depressed you can't produce enough milk (that's another story for another day). This is about how weaning can create such a change in our hormones that we can experience postpartum depression. 

    This happened to me. Breastfeeding can be blissful. There were times when nursing my twins had a more relaxing effect on me than a one-hour massage by the most skilled hands. And when my kids weaned themselves, I experienced extreme sadness.

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