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If you have just given birth, the chances are that you will have a few extra "left-over" pounds and some abdominal flab that you would love to get rid of as soon as possible.

Although a weight-loss diet may seem like the obvious choice, recovering from childbirth really does take time. Starvation diets or diets that make you stay away from whole food groups are never a good idea, but that is even more true if you are newly postpartum. Weight loss after pregnancy is best accomplished with a gradual approach that includes healthy eating, regular exercise, and simply time.

Still, there are many steps a new mother can take to encourage postpartum weight loss. After your baby is around eight weeks old, your body will have physically recovered from childbirth and if you are breastfeeding, your milk supply is now established. At that point, breastfeeding experts say, it is safe to lose around 1.6 pounds a week. How? With a wholesome diet that is low on fat, and high in fibre and fresh fruits and vegetables. Since your baby is still tiny and you have better things to do than cook, you'll also want your meals to be ready quickly. Here are some tips:

Salad wraps

Salad meals may do a good job at filling you up, but they also make you hungry again fairly soon after. If you combine a healthy salad full of goodies like fresh mushrooms, raw zucchini cubes, boiled eggs or fried chicken, interesting varieties of lettuce and Mexican tortillas, you'll have a great and easy meal. Different kinds of beans make a nice salad ingredient and are a great protein source, and with a great dressing a salad doesn't have to be boring at all. You can also add guacamole, the Mexican avocado side dish, which contains good fats.

Asian food ideas

Asian stir fries don't have to be full of fat at all, and can include any vegetable and many meats. At our house, we love Korean side dishes that are healthy and quick to make. Steamed eggplant with soy sauce, sesame seeds, and fresh scallions are one healthy option. Blanching spinach and adding sesame oil and seeds and soy sauce makes another quick side dish, and kimchi pancakes are awesome. Serve a few side dishes with a bowl of brown rice, and you have a healthy meal.

Fish

Fatty fish like salmon, herring and tuna contain Omega 3 fatty acids, which are good for your heart and overall health. Omega 3 fatty acids are also thought to reduce inflammation throughout the body, something that will come in handy after you have just given birth! You get the most benefit if you eat fatty fish regularly, around twice a week.

Smoothies

Smoothies and juices are a quick and easy way to boost your intake of fresh vegetables and fruits you can put almost anything in there! The trick is to mix sweet, "provem tastes" like apples, oranges, and pineapples with vegetables like kale, cucumber, carrots and tomatoes. If you start experimenting with your blender or juicer, you are bound to create some horrible juices once in a while. But you'll also find that seemingly weird combinations can be delicious and a great way to make sure you get all your vitamins.