You might be on bed rest or you have a friend or loved one on bed rest. Either way, some people on bed rest will lose weight while on bed rest because of the nature and condition of why they are on bed rest, to begin with. Others will be challenged to maintain weight or even stop from gaining weight.
For example, if you are on bed rest due to a sickness or condition such as serious illness like cancer or are on hospice support then you may not even be eating your proper food proportions and can lose weight unintentionally. However, if you are on bed rest due to a broken leg or something like this where your food intake or appetite will stay normal, then you will have a challenge to maintain or even lose weight while in bed.
In this post we will talk about how to lose weight wile on bed rest for those that would find themselves or a loved one on bed rest. Of course, this would be for typically overweight individuals or normal weight individuals that do not want to gain weight while on bed rest because they will be burning far less calories from no physical activity.
Being aware of your diet and caloric intake while on bed rest is key to not having weight gain.
Pregnancy and bed rest
Another common reason to be on bed rest is for pregnant women that are given orders by their doctors to be on bed rest. This can be for several reasons but usually because the pregnancy becomes critical and sensitive in nature and the doctor wants minimal movement so that the woman does not go into labor prematurely.
Understanding Your Daily Calorie Needs
It is already a challenge to understand your daily calorie needs when you are pregnant. When you are pregnant and are put on bed rest, this becomes even more of a challenge. To help in this situation, a professional dietician can help you to come up with what your daily caloric intake should be while pregnant and on bed rest.
When pregnant and on bed rest it is like any other condition that requires someone to be on bed rest. You can follow more tips below to help keep you on track and make sure you are on track. As for being pregnant it is probably not recommended to try to lose weight whether on bed rest or not. SEEK A DOCTOR’S ADVICE IF PREGNANT.
You can also make use of a calorie calculator to help you come up with a good daily caloric intake. This calculator should take into consideration your height, weight, and daily activity level to get a good idea of how much you burn each day. To keep on track once you know how much to eat, you can use a calorie tracking app such as My Fitness Pal to help you stay on target.
Will I gain weight being on bed rest?
Does bed rest = weight gain?
It does not.
Just because you are in a situation of being on bed rest, it automatically means that you will gain weight. There are many factors that can contribute to you gaining or losing weight while on bed rest. The main thing you must be aware of is how many calories you are going to burn each day while in bed. This is your RMR or resting metabolic rate.
Example: if your RMR is 2,000 calories then in theory, you could eat 2,000 calories in bed and not gain weight. In this scenario, if you were to eat 2,500 calories per day then you are eating 500 calories more than your body is burning which WILL lead to weight gain. Since 3,500 calories equals about a pound, you take the 500 additional calories per day x 7 days (500*7=3500). You would gain 1 pound per week in this scenario. If you were on bed rest for one month, then you would gain around 4 pounds.
Tips to Prevent Weight Gain on Bed Rest
- Stick to a regular eating schedule. You can eat 3 healthy sized meals or 5 to 6 smaller meals depending on what your diet needs are and if you are consulting with a dietician then they may have you on a specific meal plan.
- Avoid watching bad TV. When we binge watch, reality shows we tend to eat unhealthy snacks. Instead, select to watch fitness and health shows that will help motivate you to stay on track eating healthy while on bed rest.
- Do not have snacks available on the coffee table. Even if they are healthy, you may tend to eat them, and they overeat. Even overeating healthy foods will get you over your calorie limit which will lead to those unwanted pounds.
- Drink lots of water. If you are able, fill up a half gallon or 32 oz water bottle in the morning and make a goal to drink all of it each day. Of course, the condition of why you are on bed rest will determine if drinking this much water is realistic for you. In the case that you are in a critical pregnancy or have an injury, you will be fine to drink this much water.
- Keep a daily food journal which can be written in a traditional old school journal, or you can use an app on your smart phone.
Stay Mentally Strong
If you go into being on bed rest with a negative attitude and automatically assume that it is going to lead to you gaining weight, then you are setting yourself up for failure. Instead, take the opposite approach.
Be positive and when you have negative thoughts about gaining weight, replace them as quickly as you can with positive affirmations about how you are going to actually take advantage of your situation and lose some weight while on bed rest.
Having a goal to lose weight while on bed rest should only be for people that are overweight going into it. Also seek professional advice from your medical doctor or a dietician.
Some individuals will not be good candidates for losing weight while on bed rest. For example, if you are already under weight then you should not be trying to lose more weight. If you are seriously ill and on bed rest, then you also should not be trying to lose weight.
Your unique situation can be looked at in different ways. Here is an example, if your daughter is getting married it could cause you to want to lose some weight before the wedding because you want to look your best at her wedding. On the flip side of this coin, the wedding could cause you some major stress and lead you to stress eating and gaining weight. It all depends on our situation and how we handle and respond to our situations.
At the end of the day, be realistic, be positive, and seek professional advice. Use your common sense. Example, if you are 50 pounds overweight and suddenly are on bed rest, you will need to change your daily eating habits, or you will gain weight while on bed rest. If you are normal weight and are on bed rest, but you have an illness that is suppressing your appetite, then you will be fighting the illness along with trying not to lose weight.
The fact is if it is in your goals to lose weight while on bed rest, then you can absolutely make this a reality. You need to draw out a plan, know your RMR, and stick to a daily eating schedule along with calorie counting. If you do all these things, then you can lose weight while on bed rest.
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