Does Pumping Burn Calories? This Is a CRAZY Number!

does pumping burn calories

Pumping milk does burn calories; however, how many calories are burned varies from mother to mother. Overall, the number of calories one can burn in a day is around 200-600. Burning calories while breastfeeding or pumping is completely normal and could even be healthy since it helps breastfeeding mothers maintain weight gain and loss.

Contrary to popular belief, pumping breast milk and breastfeeding burn an equal number of calories. Nursing mothers usually burn around 500 calories every day, and breastfeeding twins burn even more calories. Exclusive pumping and breastfeeding will help lose a few pounds gained during pregnancy. This is completely normal; however, the amount of weight loss will vary from woman to woman.

How to Exclusively Breast Pump

Selecting exclusive pumping, commonly known as EPing, as your method of feeding your baby is a choice that requires dedication, discipline, and strength. This technique requires you to express or pump breast milk and give it to your baby through a bottle, NG tube, or another method. This can be a tiring and time-consuming process, especially if you continue to do it for an extended period. The longer you can continue to give your infant breast milk, a matter of fact, the better it will be for their nutritional needs. Although it can be challenging, exclusive pumping can still provide your kid with the same advantages as regular breastfeeding.

It could feel odd to try pumping for the very first time. To make the process easier, you can always seek out the assistance of experienced mothers. Some mothers find that hand-pressing their milk before using a pump gives better results. This helps provide stimulation that leads to a good milk flow. Additionally, ensure that you stay sufficiently hydrated by drinking water or other fluids. Choose a breast pump that will meet the demands of both you and your infant. If you simply need to express milk sometimes, a hand-operated pump is suitable. If you need to pump three or more times daily, electric or twin electric pumps are preferable.

Does Pumping Make You Lose Weight?

Your body adds “extra” fat while you are pregnant, but it isn’t really extra. The primary constituent of nutritious breastmilk is being stored by your body. In light of this, it should not be surprising that both nursing and breastmilk pumping will cause you to lose weight, since both breastfeeding and pumping milk burn calories. To produce milk, your body is eating up its fat reserves. In addition to losing the fat that turns into milk, doing so also results in a daily burn of 500 to 700 calories.

According to a new study, breastfeeding can result in much higher weight loss in the first year than choosing not to breastfeed (Dewey et al., 1993). Another study also discovered that even ten years later, breastfeeding or breast pumping still had long-term advantages (Rooney, 2002). In particular, ten years after giving birth, women who nursed for more than twelve weeks postpartum were 7.5 pounds lighter on average compared to those who did not.

How Many Calories Does Pumping and Breastfeeding Burn?

Both pumping and breastfeeding result in almost the same amount of caloric burn. Most women burn around 500-700 calories every day when breastfeeding or pumping. This is because producing breast milk burns calories.

How to Calculate Calories Burned from Breastfeeding

It is hard to determine exactly how many calories are burned while breastfeeding. The number can be reasonably estimated. It’s important to keep in mind that everyone is different, and no two breastfeeding mothers have comparable outputs, metabolic rates, or babies who have the same needs for breast milk.

You must first assess exactly how many ounces your infant consumes daily. One way to do this is to weigh your baby before feeding and after. Just after the baby has been fed, make a note of the difference between the baby’s weight prior to and after the feeding. This figure will reflect how much milk the infant drank during the feeding. To calculate the total quantity of breast milk the infant drank that day, add the data from each feeding that took place over the course of the 24-hour period.

To calculate how many calories does breastfeeding burned, one must take the ounce of breast milk their baby has consumed and multiply it by 20, which is the number of calories in one ounce of breast milk. Subsequently, they must divide this total by 0.8, which indicates the production efficiency (80%). Lastly, one must subtract their postpartum basal metabolism, which varies depending on how long someone has been breastfeeding.

For mothers breastfeeding between 0-4 months, the postpartum basal metabolism is 300 calories; for mothers breastfeeding between 4-6 months, it is 400 calories; and for mothers breastfeeding six months and up, it is 500 calories.

How to Safely and Quickly Lose Weight While Breastfeeding

How to Safely and Quickly Lose Weight While Breastfeeding

In order to provide your baby with nourishing milk when breastfeeding, it’s very important that you eat a balanced diet. Therefore, restricting calories may not always be a good idea. However, you can take a number of steps to encourage healthy weight loss while nursing, with an emphasis on healthy.

Reduce your carbohydrate intake

You might lose pregnancy weight quickly if you cut back on your carbohydrate intake. Make sure to boost your diet with appropriate protein, minerals, and veggies. After having delivery, keep up your daily caloric intake to at least 1,800, and talk to your doctor before starting a new diet.

Practice moderate exercise

It’s crucial to gradually ease into activity gradually after receiving the all-clear from your doctor. Starting with 20 minutes a day of activity, you can gradually increase to at least 150 minutes of exercise every week. Yoga and stroller walking with your child are two excellent ways to resume exercising after giving birth.

To prevent bloating, it’s also advised to breastfeed your child before exercising. Every activity has unique health advantages for your body. Weighted exercises strengthen your bones and muscles, whereas cardio, which could really be anything that raises your heart rate for 15 to 20 minutes, is also good for you.

Your body can get the energy it needs to finish a particularly demanding workout by consuming a nutritious carbohydrate, such as whole grain, lentils, pulses, and fruit, about 30 minutes beforehand. Thankfully, exercise doesn’t have to be challenging or demanding to have an impact. Brisk walking or another low-impact activity while carrying your child. It’s crucial to remember that if you start a fitness routine, you might need to boost your calorie intake to provide your body with the nutrition it needs to boost milk production.

Keep yourself hydrated

For women who are breastfeeding, getting enough water is crucial. They should consume 8- 12 cups of water every day. Water acts as a barrier against environmental pollutants and aids in the regulation of bodily functions, the removal of waste products, the reduction of hunger, and the maintenance of healthy muscle function.

Drink two glasses of water each morning, two cups around lunch, and two cups after dinner to make things simpler. Drink the final two cups by adding 16 ounces of water to a bottle and sipping from it all day. Try carbonation or fruit-infused water if you dislike plain water.

Never skip meals

Avoid missing meals when nursing, even if you’re trying to lose weight. Skipping meals can decrease your energy and slow down your metabolism, making it more difficult to maintain an active lifestyle and care for your child.

Furthermore, if you consume too few calories, you risk stopping your weight loss. Try to spread out your meals if you don’t have much time to eat by having smaller meals but more snacks throughout the day. After nursing your kid, it’s a good idea to have a light snack, like a fruit or vegetable, to make up for calories that were lost.

Eat more often

This might come as a surprise, but eating more often can boost your weight loss objectives. You may find that eating more frequently will give you greater energy throughout the entire day. While breastfeeding, you will be required to increase your daily calorie intake by 300 to 500 calories, increasing your total daily intake to 2,200 to 2,800 calories. Compared to this, you would generally require 1,600 to 2,400 calories if you weren’t breastfeeding and were fairly active. 

Depending on your age, level of exercise, BMI, and whether you’re only breastfeeding or combining your baby’s diet with formula, you may require a different number of calories than you realize. You can adjust your calorie target with the assistance of your healthcare provider. An ideal day would include three meals plus two snacks. However, if you are nursing, you may need to add additional small, healthier options all through the day if you find yourself constantly getting hungry. After all, during breastfeeding, it’s totally normal to experience increased hunger and maintain that hunger.

Planning what and when you will be eating will help you save time and will also be very beneficial for your health. You won’t give in to the desire to overeat if you think about and prepare your meals in advance. Meal preparation also eliminates the urge to stop for a quick snack when you’re too exhausted or pressed for time to prepare something. There will be food ready for you. You are also more likely to eat healthy meals if you prepare them in advance. This will also help you with the problem of actually figuring out what to eat.

Get proper rest

Finding the time to rest can be hard when you have a newborn, but getting as much sleep as possible is important. Doing so will assist in faster recovery and could even lead to quicker weight loss. It’s also necessary to make sure you get adequate rest after working out, as this is when your muscles need time to recover. Try to take a few quick naps during the daytime when your baby is asleep if they regularly need to be fed at night.

Be slow and steady

It is very easy to get tangled in the web of how many calories breastfeeding burns, what your weight is, whether you are eating fewer calories, if your lifestyle burns fewer calories, and all things weight loss.

Remember, when breastfeeding, it is essential to prioritize your milk production as it can be affected by weight loss methods that are marketed as quick fixes. It is important to take a gradual approach when it comes to weight loss, as a rapid decrease is likely to have a negative impact on your milk supply.

Patience is key, as slow progress is more likely to be beneficial in the long run. Also, losing weight quickly is extremely unhealthy and completely unsustainable. Only when you are losing weight slowly will you see actual long-lasting results.

How Can I Lose Weight While Exclusively Pumping?

Whether breastfeeding or exclusively pumping, the method for safe and healthy weight loss remains the same. Remember to eat enough calories and drink an adequate amount of water since your health always comes first.

Breastfeeding moms need to eat more calories, not just because breast milk burns calories but also because they need the calories for daily expenditure. Remember to always eat a healthy diet and include some exercise in your daily routine. You can also consult a nutritionist for better management of your daily caloric intake as well.

Key Takeaway

Breast milk production requires energy, which you will get from a high caloric intake. All methods of feeding your baby—exclusively breastfeeding, formula feeding, or mixed feeding—involve the production of breast milk.

In order to create milk and maintain a good milk supply, you will still need extra calories. Pumping mothers and breastfeeding moms both need more calories for milk production. Don’t be too engrossed in how many calories breastfeeding burns, nor be too worried about getting back your pre-pregnancy weight. The number of calories burned depends on how much breast milk is produced, your number of pumping sessions, your lifestyle as well as your genetics.

When breastfeeding, you will need as many calories as possible to keep producing milk, so take care of your health and maintain a healthy lifestyle, and you will be set.

Stephanie Edenburgh

I'm Steph, a mom to 3 beautiful children and lover all things having to do with my family and being a mom. I've learned a lot raising my own children and working in education and healthcare roles throughout my career. Living in beautiful Southern California I enjoy documenting and writing about all of the hard work us mom's do on a daily basis.

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