Purpose of review: Postpartum weight retainment is common in women, increasing the long-term likelihood of overweight and/or obesity. On the other hand, breastfeeding entails a high energy cost that contributes to the total energy expenditure of the mother, increasing the chances of a negative energy equilibrium that could potentially lead to weight loss. This review explores this association as depicted in the latest literature available.
Recent findings: Several studies reported a positive association between breastfeeding and postpartum weight loss while others reported no significant association. Several potential mechanisms, metabolic pathways and determinants have been described.
Summary: Even though several studies support the potentially beneficial role of breastfeeding in postpartum weight loss, more studies with robust designs are needed to reach a reliable conclusion. Healthcare providers should encourage breastfeeding, not only for its health benefits for both the mother and the offspring but also for its potential role in weight loss.