It’s probably no surprise that the maintenance of your new body will require continued dedication to a healthy lifestyle. As a mom who has gone through pregnancy and then worked to improve your body after pregnancy, you’re no doubt very familiar with what foods are best for your health. The same foods you ate to ensure a healthy pregnancy will help you maintain the benefits of your Mommy Makeover.
Many of the same principles that you follow now will continue to be important in maintaining the makeover you did. Top of this list? Getting quality sleep, eating well and drinking lots of plain water will help keep your skin elastic and avoid sagging and wrinkling. Also, eating well will help you avoid weight swings—big gains and losses will stretch out and undo the tightening you achieved in your lift procedures and liposuction.
I think most of us are aware of the kinds of foods that are going to be beneficial. However, I’m often asked if I have any specific diet tips for patients. The following are some that I frequently offer up:
- Any foods high in antioxidants will be very beneficial. They are easy to recognize since most are quite colorful. Blueberries and pomegranates are your friends because they contain anthocyanin, which helps protect your skin from fine lines and dryness. They also provide lots of vitamin C, which you need to produce collagen to keep your skin full and plump. In general, all colorful fruits and vegetables are high in antioxidants, which prevent the free radical damage that can be the precursor to fine lines and wrinkles that age your skin.
- Orange vegetables, including sweet potatoes, carrots, and butternut squash, contain beta carotene, which your body converts to vitamin A and to retinol, which helps smooth the skin and protect it from sun damage. Spinach and kale are other great sources of beta carotene.
- Dark chocolate—in moderation—is another great choice. It’s full of antioxidants and flavonoids, which help with skin repair.
- Walnuts, fish, avocados, flax seeds, tofu, soy milk, and edamame (soy beans) are all great sources of omega-3 fatty acids, which help provide smoother skin and healthier hair. The soy foods also contain isoflavones, which help reduce inflammation and can help stave off collagen breakdown to improve your skin tone and minimize wrinkles. Fish oil capsules are also a good source of omega-3s, but be cautious with these. They can thin the blood. Never use them in the third trimester of pregnancy. And if you are planning any sort of surgery, including a Mommy Makeover, stop taking them at least two weeks in advance.
- Green tea is an excellent source of antioxidants, especially the kind called catechins. These can help prevent skin cancer and may help stave off damage from sunburn.
Sticking to a regular exercise regimen and incorporating these foods into your diet in moderation will help maintain the results of your Mommy Makeover.