The Healthy Post Natal Body Podcast

No surgery required, the best weightloss exercises with DR and crappy bacon!

January 16, 2022 Peter Lap
The Healthy Post Natal Body Podcast
No surgery required, the best weightloss exercises with DR and crappy bacon!
Show Notes Transcript

This week I have a new set-up! So you should hopefully notice better sound quality on your little speakers. It costs a bit of money but you're worth it.

I am talking about how your diastasis recti really doesn't need a £9k surgery and your belly doesn't need to end up with a massive scar, in 90% of cases.

I also touch on weightloss with diastasis recti as I get asked this question a lot; "What weightloss exercises can I do when I have DR?" or "what is the best diet to follow to lose weight with DR"

A new section of the show, which I am yet to title but is currently called:
"Your label implies health and quality but you're trying to sell me garbage" (Catchy, isn't it?).

I bought some  bacon the other day. This stuff.

Finnebrogue's "better naked" nitrite free bacon.."with no nasties".

Obviously this sort of thing comes at a premium so imagine my surprise that it was still just crappy bacon with added water. No nasties but no quality either.
Very disappointing Finnebrogue, you Irish rascals!  Not buying this stuff again, I'll buy quality instead.

BTW, just incase you thought there was a good reason to add water to bacon. There isn't, it's just cheaper.

In the news this week"  about a man from Baltimore who was given a genetically modified pigs heart. Obviously I feel everyone should be a donor but, even if that happened, the numbers will never be big enough for everyone on the transplant list to be given what they need and this sort of breakthrough is incredible.

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Playing us out this week; "Unafraid" by NOVVA

Hey, welcome to the Healthy Postnatal Body Podcast with your postnatal expert Peter Lap. That, as always, would be me. Today, I'm talking about my shiny new setup. I'm talking about surgery for diastasis recti, (again). What weight loss exercises you can do when you have diastasis recti. What's the best diet to follow to lose weight with diastasis recti, all that sort of stuff. I also have a little new segment of the show which will be fun. And there's an “In the news”. Basically it's all happening today. It will be fun. Here we go.


Intro music

Hey, welcome to the Healthy Postnatal Body Podcast. Like I said, this is a little of me, just me again every week. Now it's just me that you have to listen to. It's quite tragic. We're working on some more guests, but in the meantime,..You know, no one's got any books to sell. That's kind of how it seems to work. January is not the time when people have products to sell. They've done all the prep for it. So December, November, that's when all the guests come out of the woodworks. I have some fun ones lined up to be fair. But you know, we’ll just have to wait for a little bit. This is the podcast for the 16 January and I'm here with Buddy. I'm here with little Kitty. Both my little Teesies are here and they're relatively sound asleep. Although of course Buddy will start making noises in a bit. I hope that you'll notice a bit of an improvement in sound quality for, my friends, I have a shiny new setup. Of course, I've not redone the entire room, but I did get some shiny new recording equipment and I am told that this should make all the difference. At least I hope it does because, you know, I'm spending some money here and I'm very, very cheap, so I don't like spending money. So what am I talking about today? 

Surgery for diastasis recti. Let's begin there. 

The lovely Jess sent me something the other day saying that this lady was recommending surgery for diastasis recti because she'd had it. And she said basically she had diastasis recti and she was diagnosed with it, went private. A month or two later she had had surgery and the cost involved were about £9000. So it's not cheap, £9000, and the pain was unbearable for a while and she has a huge scar. But she says “it's definitely worth it”. Now, I haven't met this lady and I don't know the lady, but I will make one or two assumptions because I've seen the before and after pictures. There was nothing about her before and after picture that suggested that she needed surgery whatsoever. She had diastasis recti, she had a round belly, sure. I could spot that a mile off, but there was nothing there that could not be fixed with exercise. Right? And this is a little bit disappointing when you start spending £9000 on something you want to at least be sure that you'll actually need to spend £9000. By comparison, my personal training package is about £700. Now, I assume this lady is in London and London based PT will charge double that, right. If you pay £1400, let’s say £1500 round it up a little bit. Again, you get three months of personal training for £1500 and professional guidance. Let's say you do that for a year. You're really spending a bit of money there. Personal trainer twice a week, do your home routine, and for a year you put that bit of effort in which you need to do anyways if you're going to get surgery, right? You still need to do exercises, but you get a PT that’s six grand at worst, £6000. That would have been a £6000 spend. There was nothing to suggest looking at the picture that this was a surgery only deal. Only in very rare circumstances. Pardon me? Only in very rare circumstances do you need surgery for your diastasis recti?. If you address it quickly enough and it's not too severe. There are of course some severe cases out there and I've seen them all that I'm also like, yeah, you're going to need some surgery here. But unless you have a ridiculously weak core and a ridiculously bad case of diastasis recti, you don't need surgery. Also bear in mind that indeed, like I said, you end up with a big scar from diastasis recti surgery. This is not a small procedure. So bear that in mind before you go to these places. And you're still going to need to do the exercises! There isn't a single plastic surgeon out there that I know, not a good one, that I know that will tell you, you don't need to exercise anymore, right? You still need to strengthen muscles up so you’re going to have to put the work in anyways. Please start putting the work in first. It's a little bit depressing when people go that far down the line. Like I said, it sounds like the easy option. I get it You get diagnosed with diastasis recti and two months later it can be be fixed. You'll be in agony for six or eight weeks. But I don't have a big scar, but I guess it still feels like the easy solution. But it really isn't the easy way out that a lot of people think it is. And I see this a lot on the forums where the blind lead the blind a little bit that “you had surgery. You are so lucky!. The NHS won't give me surgery”. And I've said this before, the NHS shouldn't be paying for diastasis recti surgery in all but the most extreme cases in my opinion, and therefore, you’s my podcast so I'm right.

You don't need surgery. I can't be clearer about thisthis, I can't be any more clear about this. You do not need surgery in 99% of all diastasis recti cases. You need to be consistent with your exercise and work on your diet a little bit, because of course, diet matters. Right. 

Which brings me to the next question I had this week was about what are the best exercises to do when you have diabetes recti if you want to lose weight? So what are the best weight loss exercises to do and what is the best diet to be on if you want to lose weight when you also have diastasis recti? 

These people were not asking me what the best diastasis recti exercises were. They were asking for weight loss when you also have diastasis recti and that's not slightly different. Now, I've always said that exercise for weight loss is a massive waste of time.

It's not a very efficient and effective way of losing weight, exercising. However, if you're going to do it, any form of cardio will do any form of non-load bearing weight training, any sort of weight training that you're in control of, let me put it that way. So resistance training. Yeah. 

You can do all the exercises that you also do as part of your diastasis recti recovery program. Right. I know HPNB is not at all focused on weight loss, but a lot of the exercises in there will, all exercises in there will help you burn calories. But a lot of them are really big compound movements, especially once you get past month four, so past the first month that you pay for. But I've always said that diet is the best way to lose weight. Make sure your diet is okay, make sure your sleep pattern is okay and all that sort of stuff. Make sure you hydrate, make sure you drink enough water. It's very important. That sort of thing is much more important than exercise is, which is much easier to do than exercise is. And when it comes to diet and I know I'm repeating myself a little bit here, whatever diet works for you is fine, right? Whatever diet you can stick to is okay. Whatever diet, especially if you have diastasis recti, whatever diet doesn't make you bloat is good. I am, what did Dr. Glenn Livingston use to call it, “diet agnostic”?


I'm completely flexible. I don't care what you eat. I want everyone to eat well. I want an ideally whole food, 80- 90% of it plant based, or at least 80% of it should be plant based as per the previous experts that I've had on the program. Right. Mainly whole foods. 

Get your fruit and veg in and eat good quality meat and all that sort of stuff. Fish and meat. If you go to buy fish and meat. And to be fair, I do. 

I eat like an adult and therefore I eat a bit of everything, so to speak. If you find certain foods that bloat, then you're much better off cutting them out because they hinder the healing of your diastasis recti. Bloating doesn't help. Right? And that is kind of that. As long as you're in a calorific deficit, you will lose weight. That is just the way it is. You don't need to drop to like extremes of 1200 calories or something like that. 

I see that 1200 calorie figure thrown out a lot by Dietitians, Health Acceptance, health of every size, or fat acceptance campaigners. There isn't a single same person in the world that tells you to live on 1200 calories for an indefinite amount of time. I wouldn't even go anywhere near that. 

If your standard calorie intake for maintenance is around about 2000, then 500 dropping to 1500 would have you lose a pound a week. Right. And I would take it much slower than that. I would get your activity levels up a little bit, improve your sleep patterns, manage your stress so that your hormone levels balance out a little bit and your body isn't constantly stressed. Then you can basically increase your base metabolic rate by 200-300 a day, and therefore you only need to drop 200 below your current maintenance level. That's much more reasonable. So then you consume 1800 calories. And if the bulk of that if you're smart with your food. If you pick the right foods, the whole foods, your lentils, your pulses, your vegetables, your fruits, good quality meat and all that. 

And you look at the quantities or you look at the calorific, the density of the food. So you know that a rib-eye steak or something like that. 100 grams of ribeye is equivalent to 300 grams of chicken or something like that, with regards to calories. And that's because of the fat content. When, say, chicken, I eat chicken breast in this particular case, and that matters hugely. 

That's a huge difference. Because if I have 100 grams of food, of steak, then I can still be hungry after consuming. If I'm 300 grams of chicken, I'm full for an eternity. So being smart with what you eat is significantly more important when you plan a diet than the actual diet is. You don't need to go vegan for a month, right? Don't buy the “Wickd” stuff. Stick to healthy food. Stick the stuff that you Cook. I know I keep banging all about that. But stick to stuff that you cook and then you'll be okay. 

Like a quick one. I wasn't going to do this and it's not in the podcast subscription, so I might..No I’m not. I'm going to add it. Maybe I will. Maybe I won’t Maybe I will. It's one of those will he won't he; Managing stress is one of the key factors of successful postpartum recovery, and that includes managing your sleep and all that sort of stuff, which is annoying. But the amount of sleep you get affects your stress levels.

 Managing your stress levels is so important for your postpartum recovery that I might do a special episode about that in the next month or so and I might find a little guest. Wouldn't that be nice? Have a little guest on talking about managing stress levels, because I think it's important to such an extent that if you don't manage your stress well, you cannot lose weight. If your body is constantly because your body doesn't know why you're stressed. If you're stressed from work or you're stressed from not sleeping because the baby is waking up regularly or whatever, the body doesn't realize that it's not a tiger chasing you, and therefore it puts you into that fight or flight mode, which is similar to… so it releases a lot of the glucose stored in the liver and gives you a burst of energy. But you're not using that energy for anything even as remotely intense as running away from a tiger. Right? So the body is saying fight or flight, I'm going to flight. I'm going to give you the energy, the short term energy to go and run, and then you don't run. So there you go. 

That then messes up your weight loss progress. I'm trying to phrase that very carefully here. And this is not just about weight loss progress. Right. But it's also about gaining weight and weight gain. So a lot of the time, stress levels really impact on your weight management. Let me put it that way. We know stress messes up your health, right. We know that. I've done studies, I've seen studies on that that I’ve had on the podcast before where they show you that a year of not sleeping properly can biologically age you by three to five years, but it can also be restored. 

That's the beauty of all this stuff. All this stuff can be reversed if you just put the time and the effort into managing this stuff. So that's what we'll do. We'll probably do something about stress management. What was next? It's a new section of the show. 

Like I said in the podcast description, I haven't titled it yet. But currently it's called; “your label implies health and quality, but you're trying to sell me garbage”. 

Not the catchiest of all the things.

I bought some bacon the other day. I don't buy bacon an awful lot, but when I buy bacon, I buy good quality bacon. I like to buy a nice bacon. So walk into Sainsnburys. Other bacon shops are, of course, available. And I go to the bacon section. Now, you know how buying bacon works, right? 

And I see this lovely looking bacon from Finnebrogue’s. “Better Naked”. It's called “Better Naked Unsmoked Back bacon”. I thought, now, that looks the business. And it says only “made without nitrites”, which is nice. I think that's a salty thing, “Made without artificial additives or allergens”. That sounds good. Or “made without nitrates and other nasties”. And I take the bacon and I come home, right. 

And I put it in my pan and half the bacon disappears. Because they still add water to it. Now if, dear people that charge me a premium for a healthier product (so called healthier product);. Don't add stuff you don't need to add to it. Right. Don't charge me a premium for a shitty product just because you didn't add anything to it that other people might add. 

If you're still adding water to it, you're still ripping me off. So shame on you. Shame on you. I think it's called Finnebrogue. Yeah, Finnebrogue. Finnebrogue Artisan. There's nothing artisan, you hacks. They're in Downpatrick. That's where they are. And I judge you. I expected better from an artisan company than to just make cheap, shitty imitation bacon, then try to sell it to me as a health product. Yucky. Very disappointing.

The bacon was tasty enough to be fair, and it was nowhere near as salty as the other stuff. I just don't like people telling me that I'm going to get something nice when they know full well that I still end up with a less decent product. So that; Again, I'm just bringing it up to show you the highlight, the importance of not just of checking the label because it's listed in the ingredients, right? It's the second ingredient in the thing. First it says bacon and then it says water. 

Don't just look at the packaging. That's how they get you. If you just look at the packaging, you think you're eating healthy, you think you're eating a good quality product, and then it turns out you're not. 

Slogans don't mean anything. I don't know what nitrites are, I don't mind telling you, but I know that they're bad for me. Right? Because otherwise why would they say no nitrites? No other nasties. I like stuff with no other nasties. Right. That sounds good. But I also don't want water added to myself. Random stuff added to it. So that's what I will keep an eye out on the supermarket. And every time I buy something stupid, I will tell you what I bought. So you can also stay care of it. Right?

 On the plus side, happy news. In the news this week, there was a really cool thing on BBC. I'll link to the article. This guy in surgery in Baltimore, he's in University of Maryland School of Medicine. He got a genetically modified pig heart in the world’s in the first transplant, which is phenomenal.

I mean this is like next level cool. He was too poor in health to get a human transplant, and therefore they genetically modified the pig using the transplant to knock out several genes that would have led to the organ being rejected. 

And I mean, this is astonishing. This is astonishing stuff. There currently, according to this, 100,000 people on the waiting list for a heart in the US. And this would be such big thing, such a big breakthrough. It is phenomenal. So this is really cool. And I love this stuff.

I always think everybody should probably be an organ donor, but I know the demand is so high it will never catch up. So this is phenomenal progress so this is really cool. I'll link to that so you can read it. I feel a bit better about the world. Wouldn't that be something? Isn't it nice that I can end on a slightly happy note rather than all my sad “In the news this week” yeah, the world is going to shit again, right?

 We’re going to try to keep it a bit lighter this year. Hopefully we'll also try to keep it a bit more organized and therefore be more structured. A bit more on the ball. We have a nice setup. We have better sound quality. so I can have more emails and questions. We'll do another big Q and A at the end of this month so definitely get them in. Peter@healthypostnatalbody.comyou know where the website is. You can always get in touch with me if you have any questions, comments or anything like that. Here's a new bit of music, a nice short podcast episode for you and you take care of yourself. Bye now.