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Many women have a stretched stomach after giving birth.
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Whether you have a stretched stomach from losing weight quickly, giving birth or any other reason, it is possible to tighten that area up. By focusing on diet, exercise and abdominal training, you'll be on your way to tightening your stretched stomach, but it's important to act quickly. According to NBC News, studies have shown that women that do not lose their extra pregnancy weight within six months are more likely to still have it 10 years later. Stick closely to your exercise and diet plan to lose your stretched stomach.
Reduce your diet by 500 calories every day, or 3,500 calories each week. This will result in the loss of 1 to 2 pounds of extra fat each week, which will help if your stretched stomach is from excess fat. This is considered a healthy rate of weight loss.
Eat a diet focused on lean protein, fruit, vegetables and whole grains. Choose healthy snacks, such as nuts or low-fat yogurt. Eat brown rice and whole wheat pasta rather than white rice and regular pasta. Focus on poultry, beans, tofu and fish for protein.
Eat foods with vitamin E, A, C and B to help promote healthy skin. Tofu, spinach, nuts and avocados are rich in vitamin E. You can find vitamin A in carrots, sweet potatos, pumpkins and apricots. Eat oranges, strawberries and kiwis for vitamin C. Choose eggs, cheese and bran for vitamin B.
Drink plenty of water. Staying hydrated will help to keep your skin healthy.
Perform moderate cardio for 30 to 60 minutes per day if your stretched stomach is from giving birth. Losing weight at a moderate pace will help you to get rid of your stretched stomach and extra fat. Bike, skate, hike, jog, swim or dance. Choose an activity that you enjoy that gets you moving. If you've given birth recently, make sure to wait a few weeks before you start working out.
Perform strength-training exercises two times per week. Muscle burns more calories than fat even when at rest. That means if your stretched stomach is from extra fat still hanging around, building more muscle will help you lose it.
Perform regular crunches and bicycle crunches to tone your abdominal muscles. By toning muscles in your stomach, whether you lost weight too fast or have a stretched stomach for any other reason, your stomach will begin to look firmer and less stretched. Perform one set of 10 and work your way up to three sets of 20. Perform abdominal exercises at least three times per week.
Talk to your doctor before starting to work out if you recently gave birth. If you've lost weight too quickly, consider reducing your normal cardio routine; losing more than one to two pounds per week is not considered healthy.
If you are breast feeding, do not start a calorie reducing diet.