Lose Your Mummy Tummy -- with Julie Tupler, RN
Mummy tummy, baby belly -- whatever you call it, if you want to lose those post-pregnancy pounds, help is on the way. Julie Tupler, RN, joined us on Feb. 22 to answer your questions.
Mummy tummy, baby belly -- whatever you call it, if you want
to lose those post-pregnancy pounds, help is on the way. Julie Tupler, RN,
joined us on Feb. 22 to answer your questions.
If you have questions about your health, you should consult
your personal physician. This event is meant for informational purposes
MODERATOR: Welcome to WebMD Live, Julie. We don't all have large
babies, but so many of us end up with mummy tummy. Why?
TUPLER: The women or men that do abdominal exercises incorrectly can
create a separation for the outer-most abdominal muscle -- the muscle referred
to as the "six pack". This separation can cause both the mummy tummy
and lower back problems. The outer-most abdominal muscle that separates is the
support system for the back. When it separates, it weakens the support system
for the organs in the front and weakens the support system for the back causing
low back problems.
Most people do not know they have this separation. This separation is caused
by a forward forceful movement at the belly button area, which is a weak spot.
This forward forceful movement can be caused by the uterus pressing on this
weak spot during pregnancy or by doing exercises incorrectly.
MODERATOR: This is called diastasis. Is it inevitable when
TUPLER: No. A very small percentage of women do not get it for some
reason. Also, if a woman starts doing the Tupler technique abdominal exercises
early in her pregnancy she can prevent getting this diastasis.
MODERATOR: How do you know if you have this separation,
TUPLER: During pregnancy if a woman lifts her head she might see a
little bulge; she will know she has a diastasis. Both during and after
pregnancy a woman can check herself for this by lying on her back with her
knees bent, heels close to the buttocks; then she puts her fingers pointing
down towards her pubic bone into her belly button. She presses down and slowly
lifts her head. If she feels a hole in the middle as she lifts her head she
knows that she has a diastasis. She can also check three inches below her belly
button and three inches above her belly button. The fingers must be pointing
down when she is checking herself.
MODERATOR: Can you get rid of the separation now, no matter when you
had your last baby?
TUPLER: Yes, absolutely. Research from the Columbia University
Department of Physical Therapy done in March 2001 found that the women who did
the Tupler technique exercises during pregnancy had a smaller diastasis than
the women that did not do these exercises. We have found that even during
pregnancy when the uterus is expanding on that weak point of the abdominal area
of the belly button, she can keep this separation the same or make it