A mum-of-two has spoken out about feeling ‘self conscious’ and ‘uncomfortable’ after childbirth, admitting she forgot to take care of herself after becoming a mother before finding a diet that worked for her and achieving her weight loss goals.
Lauren da Silva, a mum from Australia, has opened up about feeling ‘uncomfortable in your own skin’ after giving birth.
The 34-year-old had struggled with her weight in the past, at points trying rigorous weight loss regimes which saw her working out six days a week on a diet of chicken and broccoli.
But once Lauren became a mum, she found her weight became even harder to keep off.
The mum describes how with her children being the focus of her life, she forgot to attend to her own needs and lost a sense of herself.
Speaking to the Daily Mail, Lauren admitted, ‘I had the mindset that being a mum means that you don’t get to take care of yourself anymore.’
Lauren accepted feeling ‘uncomfortable’ in her body as part of being a mother, a feeling many women may relate to.
‘I believed that this is how it is. That being overweight or uncomfortable in your own skin was normal after childbirth.
‘I did not believe that I could be healthier, lighter, or fitter after having babies compared to what I was before the babies.
‘I was not comfortable and I was not confident. I was very, very self-conscious.’
The worse she felt about her appearance, the more Lauren linked her eating habits to her emotions and began hiding what she ate from her family.
‘I was basically eating my emotions’, she continued. ‘Food is always there, food is always in the cupboard – and I was choosing to purchase crappy food.
‘In the car on the way home I would eat half of it, then feel guilty so I’d hide it so my husband wouldn’t know I’d bought it.
‘Then I’d finish it later and hide the wrapper.’
Eventually she ‘hit rock bottom’ and decided to try a new eating plan called ‘Healthy Mummy’.
‘Knowing if I don’t try this then I’m doomed forever, I’m just going to get bigger and more unhappy.’
Looking at others’ transformation pictures on the plan’s Facebook page, Lauren felt intimidated by the women that appeared to be doing well.
‘I used every excuse under the sun as to why I couldn’t succeed and these women were. They must have more money, a supportive husband, personal training sessions.
‘Something clicked. I was just constantly wishing for something to happen, and finally realised nothing is going to happen unless I make the change.’
Lauren began making healthier food choices, swapping sugary foods for sweet but wholesome alternatives and saw her weight drop from nearly 12 stone to just over eight.
‘I still eat chocolate, but I’ll also make my own sweet treats from things like dates and bananas and oats, and I don’t feel like I’m missing out.
‘I’ll still have fish and chips, but now we make our own at home and cook them in the oven.’
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The mum insists that for her, losing weight is not about feeling hungry, and now she feels much better about her body for eating well.
‘Realising that I can actually lose weight and not be hungry, that had to be some kind of miracle.
‘You can actually reclaim your confidence, your health and your body if that’s what you want to do.’