Intermittent Fasting And Nursing A Toddler Don’t Mix

My doctor recommended it; it lasted about a week.

Written by Kristen N. Winiarski
Close-up shot of mother holding laughing little daughter and spinning on sandy beach on their vacati...
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I was advised to lose at a recent visit to my doctor. Isn’t it funny how you know it’s coming, and they still feel the need to tell you? I haven’t lost the baby weight since my second kid was born three years ago. I was able to lose weight between kids, but add in PCOS and that aging is a bitch and it’s a whole new ballgame with two. In order to lose weight, I have to be way more strict than other people do when it comes to trying to lose weight in order for it to stick.

My doctor advised me to do more cardio and try intermittent fasting. I’ll be real. I do want to lose some weight, but kids are stressful, and I go in cycles where I eat too much sugar. Let’s be real: Forget cardio; trying to fit in everything and keep two small people alive are enough on most days. So intermittent fasting it was! Of course, my doctor didn’t give me much info or any helpful resources aside from do 16 hours fasting and eight hours of eating. So to start, I did the math and stopped eating about 4 p.m.

It lasted about a week.

I have a hard time regulating my blood sugar. I’m one of those people who need to eat every few hours to keep level; I don’t know why I thought this was a good idea. “Hangry” describes me to a T.

Every night during this experimental intermittent fasting week, I would get so angry around 8 p.m. at my nursing toddler. He’s been using milk to go to sleep since he was born, but all of a sudden, I was getting mad about it. I was mad at how long he was nursing. I would just lay there, and stew and it was horrible. Soon I was starving after not eating for four hours. As my son fed, my hunger increased, driving me into this hanger-rage.

All told, intermittent fasting might work for some people, but I'm not one of them, especially when I’m nursing. I blame my doctor for not giving me proper resources, and for essentially setting me up to fail. And not only did I fail, I made myself miserable.

In the end, I know it was an unhealthy choice, both for me and for my son. I hated being hungry, I hated being hangry, and I hated being mad at my son for doing something he’s done since birth. I stopped fasting. After all, a few extra pounds are no big deal.