There are many ways to prevent pregnancy, from barrier methods to hormonal birth control. Your reproductive goals and lifestyle will influence which method is right for you.
Foods and drinks contain energy locked away in chemical bonds, which our bodies metabolize to fuel our daily activities. This energy is measured by units called Calories.
1. Eat a Healthy Diet
While many people may believe that birth control pills contribute to weight gain, the fact is that everyone reacts differently to hormonal contraceptives. In general, women who are able to maintain a healthy diet and exercise regimen often experience no side effects from their birth control.
Some types of birth control pills can cause fluid retention and increased appetite. However, it’s important to remember that these side effects are short-lived and should subside after you switch to a different type of birth control pill.
Women who take oral contraceptives containing drospirenone (Yasmin, Yaz) or norgestimates have the best chance of not experiencing birth control-related weight gain due to their diuretic properties. They also have lower doses of estrogen and progestin, which means less bloating and water retention.
If you do find yourself gaining weight while taking a hormonal birth control pill, the good news is that it can easily be reversed by lowering your calorie intake and increasing the amount of physical activity you participate in. It is also helpful to avoid any herbs or supplements that can weaken hormonal birth control, such as St. John’s wort and charcoal.
If you’re still concerned about gaining weight while on birth control, talk to your doctor. They can help you find a birth control method that works for your unique body and health history.
2. Exercise Regularly
In general, exercise is a great way to burn calories and build muscle. However, some forms of birth control can interfere with muscle building and recovery after workouts. This is mainly due to the fact that birth control can increase estrogen levels in the body, which can lead to bloating and water retention. Luckily, there are ways to reduce the effects of hormones on your body so that you can continue to build muscle and lose weight.
The type of hormone in your birth control also plays a role. Studies show that some types of hormones (such as drospirenone) can have a diuretic effect, which decreases water retention and bloating. On the other hand, certain types of birth control (such as androgenic progestins found in Depo-Provera) can increase insulin levels, which can cause any excess calories to be stored as fat cells.
While most women don’t experience any significant weight gain while on birth control, some do. If you are experiencing this side effect, it is important to talk with your doctor about possible options for switching birth control methods. Keep in mind, though, that you will need to have some form of backup contraception if you decide to switch, as a gap in your protection can result in unwanted pregnancy. A reliable backup method should include a condom and/or spermicide.
3. Drink Plenty of Water
A healthy diet is essential for maintaining a healthy weight, and drinking plenty of water is key to staying hydrated. Many women on birth control experience water retention and an increased appetite, which can lead to bloating and weight gain. It is important to drink plenty of water throughout the day, especially when experiencing these symptoms.
If you’re struggling with weight gain while on birth control, it may be time to switch methods. Talk to your doctor about switching to a nonhormonal method such as the implant, IUD, or vaginal ring. Keep in mind, however, that a gap in birth control coverage could lead to unwanted pregnancy, so you’ll want to make sure you have an alternative form of contraception in place before making a change.
Birth control pills are incredibly effective at preventing pregnancy, regulating menstrual cycles, and reducing cramps, but they can also deplete nutrients in the body, setting you up for fatigue, bloating, mood swings, and, yes, weight gain. Switching to a better-for-you diet that includes lots of veggies, healthy fats, and fiber can help offset some of these side effects.
While it is common to see weight gains on birth control, they are usually caused by a combination of factors, including water retention and an increased appetite. Some birth control pills, such as those containing drospirenone (Yasmin, Yaz) contain a diuretic that can help reduce water retention and decrease weight gain.
4. Reduce Stress
For many women, gaining weight while on hormonal birth control is a major concern. The hormones in the pill and patch can cause bloating, which makes some women feel heavier than they would be otherwise. If you’re concerned about gaining weight, try practicing some self-care and getting into a healthy routine. This could include regular exercise, a nutritious diet, and even taking time out for yourself to relax.
Stress is also known to disrupt the part of the brain that controls ovulation and can lead to missed periods. This is why it’s so important to find ways to manage your stress levels. You can do this by eating a balanced diet, drinking plenty of water, and getting enough sleep. It’s also a good idea to try to incorporate meditation, weekly massages, and other stress-reducing activities into your lifestyle.
In addition to incorporating these habits into your daily routine, you may also want to consider switching to a different form of birth control that doesn’t contain any hormones. This could include an IUD or implant, which are both relatively low-maintenance options. Ultimately, the type of birth control that works best for you will depend on a variety of factors, including lifestyle, health concerns, and ease of use. To learn more about your options, talk to your health care provider.