Pumping Liquid Gold: How Many Calories Do You Burn?

As a breastfeeding mama, you’re already a superhero, nourishing your little one with the liquid gold that is breast milk. But did you know that pumping breast milk can also help you burn some extra calories? That’s right, your body is working hard to produce that precious milk, and every ounce counts towards your calorie expenditure.

The Calorie-Burning Power of Breast Milk

It’s a simple mathematical equation: each ounce of breast milk you produce requires approximately 20 calories from your body. So, if you’re pumping 20 ounces of breast milk daily, you’re burning an impressive 400 calories just by producing that liquid gold!

Let’s break it down:

  • 1 ounce of breast milk = 20 calories burned
  • 20 ounces of breast milk = 400 calories burned

Calculating the calories you burn by pumping breast milk is as straightforward as measuring your milk supply output. By tracking how much you pump each day, you can easily determine the number of calories your body is expending to produce that liquid gold.

Factors Affecting Calorie Burn

While the basic calculation is straightforward, it’s important to note that the number of calories you burn can vary depending on several factors:

  1. Frequency and Duration of Pumping: The more often and longer you pump, the more calories you’re likely to burn. Pumping multiple times a day or for extended periods can increase your calorie expenditure.

  2. Individual Metabolism: Every mama’s body is unique, and metabolic rates can differ from one person to another. Your individual metabolic rate can affect the number of calories you burn during milk production.

  3. Diet and Hydration: Maintaining a balanced diet and staying hydrated can impact your body’s ability to produce breast milk efficiently, potentially influencing the number of calories burned.

  4. Exercise and Activity Level: Regular physical activity can boost your overall metabolism, which may contribute to burning more calories while pumping.

  5. Stage of Lactation: The stage of your breastfeeding journey can also play a role. Early on, your body may expend more energy to establish a consistent milk supply, potentially burning more calories.

The Benefits of Burning Calories While Pumping

While the primary focus of breastfeeding and pumping is to nourish your little one, the added benefit of burning calories is a welcomed bonus for many mamas. Here are a few advantages of burning calories while pumping:

  • Postpartum Weight Management: Pumping can contribute to a gradual and healthy postpartum weight loss, especially when combined with a balanced diet and regular exercise.
  • Increased Energy Expenditure: The act of producing breast milk requires your body to work a little harder, potentially boosting your overall energy expenditure.
  • Metabolic Boost: Breastfeeding and pumping have been linked to a temporary increase in metabolic rate, which can help you burn more calories throughout the day.

Remember, every mama’s journey is unique, and your body’s needs may vary. Always prioritize your health and the well-being of your little one while enjoying the added calorie-burning benefits of pumping liquid gold.

Embracing Your Breastfeeding Journey

Whether you’re exclusively pumping or combining breastfeeding and pumping, the act of producing breast milk is a remarkable feat deserving of celebration. Embrace this incredible journey, knowing that every ounce of liquid gold you pump is not only nourishing your baby but also contributing to your overall well-being.

So, the next time you sit down to pump, take a moment to appreciate the incredible power of your body and the liquid gold you’re creating. And who knows, you might even shed a few extra calories along the way!

How Many Calories Do You Burn Breastfeeding | NEED TO KNOW FACTS For Nursing Moms


Does pumping breast milk burn calories?

Pumping mothers can burn up to 500 extra calories per day.

How many calories do I burn each time I breastfeed?

While breastfeeding burns about 500-700 calories extra per day to fuel milk making, this may not always contribute to weight loss postpartum – many factors like pre-pregnancy weight, diet, physical activity level, etc will impact weight loss after birth (Institute of Medicine, 2002; Dewey, 1994).

Does pumping help you lose weight like breastfeeding?

With that in mind, it should come as no surprise that breastfeeding and pumping breastmilk both lead to increased weight loss after delivery. Your body is using up those fat stores to feed baby. Not only are you shedding the fat that becomes the milk, converting that fat into milk burns about 500-700 calories per day.

How many calories should I eat while breast pumping?

An additional 330 to 400 kilocalories (kcal) per day is recommended for well-nourished breastfeeding mothers, compared with the amount they were consuming before pregnancy (approximately 2,000 to 2,800 kcal per day for breastfeeding women verses 1,600 to 2,400 kcal per day for moderately active, non-pregnant women who …

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