Causes of Belly Fat After Hysterectomy: Ways to Reduce It – KompleteCare Blog (2023)

Getting rid of belly fat after a hysterectomy can be a daunting task. So if you've recently had a hysterectomy and you're concerned about fat around your abdomen, you're not alone.

Basic points:

  • Medically, there is a direct link between hysterectomy and abdominal fat.
  • Common causes of abdominal fat after surgery include internal swelling of the abdomen and organs around the pelvis, damaged abdominal muscles and ligaments, and changes in reproductive hormones.
  • There are fat burning tricks to reduce belly fat after a hysterectomy such as strength training, ab exercises, dieting and intermittent fasting.

Hysterectomy is a common surgery performed on women these days.

One of the many reasons for this procedure is that it can be used as a last resort for conditions like endometriosis or uterine fibroids, or as a permanent method of birth control for women.

It is not uncommon for women to gain a few pounds and gain abdominal fat after a hysterectomy.medical researchshows that there is a direct relationship between hysterectomy and weight gain.

The type and purpose of the hysterectomy performed can affect total body weight and significant fat accumulation.

What is a hysterectomy?

Causes of Belly Fat After Hysterectomy: Ways to Reduce It – KompleteCare Blog (1)

A hysterectomy is a surgical procedure to remove all or part of the uterus (womb) and possibly the cervix, as well as surrounding organs and tissues, such as the ovaries and fallopian tubes.

The procedure is usually done to treat certain conditions that affect the uterus or other surrounding organs, such as the cervix, fallopian tubes, and ovaries.

However, the focus of hysterectomy surgery is on the uterus (womb). After a hysterectomy, a woman cannot become pregnant and cannot see her period.

Types of Hysterectomy

  1. Histerectomia total:With the exception of the ovaries, the entire uterus and cervix are removed. After removal of the cervix, a regular gynecological examination is recommended.
  2. Partially/SuprazervikalHisterectomia abdominal:This involves removing the upper part of the uterus and leaving the cervix intact. The cervix (cervix) is the lower, narrow part of the uterus that connects the uterus to the vagina.
  3. Radical hysterectomy with bilateral salpingo-oophorectomy:It is mainly used to treat cancer, such as cancer of the uterus, ovaries, or cervix; It involves surgical removal of the uterus, ovaries, cervix, fallopian tubes, some lymph nodes, upper part of the vagina, and some surrounding tissue.
  4. Total hysterectomy with bilateral salpingo-oophorectomy:This involves removing the uterus, cervix, fallopian tubes (salpingectomy), and ovaries (oophorectomy). This procedure causes menopausal symptoms in women under menopausal age due to the removal of the ovaries.

Reasons for a hysterectomy

Causes of Belly Fat After Hysterectomy: Ways to Reduce It – KompleteCare Blog (2)

As mentioned earlier, women undergo hysterectomy for various reasons such as:

  • Uterine prolapse.
  • cancer prevention.
  • Excessive abdominal or vaginal bleeding that has not been effectively treated.
  • Intense menstrual and pelvic pain.
  • pelvic inflammatory disease
  • PainfulUterine myoma.
  • Pelvic and uterine pain.
  • Cancer of the cervix, uterus or ovaries.
  • Endometriosis.

What are the causes of belly fat after hysterectomy?

Causes of Belly Fat After Hysterectomy: Ways to Reduce It – KompleteCare Blog (3)

You may experience abdominal fat or weight gain after a hysterectomy, not necessarily due to significant changes in lifestyle, habits, physical activity and diet.

  1. Internal edema

The abdomen swells after a hysterectomy and can easily be mistaken for abdominal fat. Also, other organs in the abdomen or pelvis tend to swell after this procedure, giving the stomach a loose appearance. It can take several months for the swelling of the pelvis and lower abdominal structures to subside after a hysterectomy.

  1. Damaged ligaments and abdominal muscles

An abdominal hysterectomy can be a catalyst for anatomical and muscular changes in the body, particularly in the lower abdomen.

Certain ligaments and muscles hold the uterus in place, keep pressure on the inner abdominal area, and stabilize the midsection. Incisions made during a hysterectomy can damage these muscles, weakening them or causing them to stop working.

This will make the stomach look bloated or flabby, and it will also make the belly look shorter and fatter. Some people may experience love handles around the abdomen and a loose stomach.

  1. Changes/decrease in reproductive hormones

One of the main causes of abdominal fat after a hysterectomy is reproductive hormonal changes. When the uterus is removed, there are changes in hormone production.

If you had your ovaries removed during surgery, there will also be changes in hormone production, leading to what is known as 'surgical menopause'. During menopause, small amounts of estrogen are released, so estrogen production decreases.

The ovaries secrete estrogen hormones and when they are removed there is an absence or reduction in estrogen production which would lead to menopausal symptoms.

Factors Affecting Weight Gain After Hysterectomy

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Basically, there is a direct correlation between hysterectomy and increased weight gain. However, fat accumulation and weight gain are completely individual and therefore not all women may be affected. Some factors influence weight gain after a hysterectomy, including:

  1. The nature of the hysterectomy procedure

Some types of hysterectomy have a greater impact on weight gain than others. For example, a hysterectomy, where the ovaries are removed, causes estrogen levels to drop, leading to weight gain. The sudden change in hormones that leads to surgical menopause increases total body fat and abdominal fat.

  1. Your weight before the operation

If you were overweight before a hysterectomy or have repeatedly gained and lost weight, you are at high risk of gaining even more weight after a hysterectomy.

The more weight you are before the procedure, the more likely you are to gain weight after the procedure.

Additionally, obese women are at risk of developing medical conditions that require a hysterectomy.

  1. How fast do you recover

The recovery time after a hysterectomy is long. It usually takes 4 to 6 weeks to recover and resume normal physical activities.

However, each person's recovery rate is different. Women who have an abdominal hysterectomy take longer to heal and may gain more weight afterwards.

To fully recover, it is necessary to be physically inactive to help the body heal. This physical inactivity requires staying in one place for a long time and leads to weight gain.

  1. physical inactivity

After a hysterectomy, you may not be able to exercise right away due to the discomfort and pain associated with the procedure.

The longer it takes to heal, the more physical inactivity will affect your weight. Remaining physically inactive during the post-procedure healing period can increase the risk of fat accumulation and ultimately weight gain.


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2 main ways to reduce belly fat after hysterectomy

In general, there are two ways to reduce belly fat after a hysterectomy: abdominal exercises and diet.

  1. a practice

Regular exercise for 150 minutes a week, or 75 minutes of aerobic exercise, is essential to your post-hysterectomy weight loss journey.

Make sure of this before doing any exercise.Speak with a licensed physicianor your surgeon and get permission to do so. Once you get the go-ahead, you can start taking short walks or other small, gentle movements.

Once you have fully recovered and regained your strength, you can develop an exercise plan focused on burning fat and building muscle that includes:

  • modified sit-ups
  • diaphragmatic breathing
  • knee roll
  • Modified pelvic tilt, etc.

These exercises tighten and flatten the appearance of the abdomen and protect the pelvic floor. It's important to incorporate activities that you really enjoy into your daily routine and workout. It may well set the pace for sustained, long-term practice.

  1. Diet and Nutrition

One of the best ways to reduce waist and stomach fat is through diet. Diet cannot reverse or change the anatomical changes of a hysterectomy, but it has a positive effect on hormones and significantly reduces abdominal fat.

When planning your diet, subtract calories and consider ingredients like:

  • Vegetables

The antioxidant components of vegetables help prevent inflammation in the body. They are also a good source of gut-friendly fiber. Most vegetables are low in fat and calories, creating a calorie deficit that is important for weight loss. This makes them an ideal choice for reducing belly fat and losing weight.

  • fruit

Fruits are high in water and fiber, which adds volume to your meals and prevents you from overeating and consuming fewer calories. Fruits are very low in calories and rich in nutrients, so they naturally help prevent weight gain and chronic diseases such as cardiovascular disease. Fruits are a natural way to lose weight and can be eaten raw or in smoothies.

  • whole grain

Whole grains are rich in fiber and fiber slows digestion in the body. Whole grains encourage calorie loss by reducing the number of calories stored during digestion. As a result, you'll feel fuller for longer and avoid overeating.

Choosing whole grains over refined grains reduces belly fat and also reduces the risk of obesity. Whole grains like brown rice, whole wheat, corn, popcorn, whole oats, whole grain rye, buckwheat and wild rye will help you lose weight and abdominal fat after a hysterectomy.

  • beans

Beans are rich in protein and promote weight loss by burning calories and fat. Beans are low in fat and low on the glycemic index, and are an excellent source of fiber. Using beans as your main source of protein prevents the accumulation of belly fat.


Belly fat is a common problem after a hysterectomy. Factors responsible for abdominal fat after a hysterectomy include hormonal changes, damaged or weakened muscles and ligaments, and abdominal swelling.

Abdominal fat growth after a hysterectomy occurs without major lifestyle changes. However, after a hysterectomy, you can change your lifestyle and diet to induce effective weight loss and burn the abdominal fat associated with the procedure.

Also do light exercise.see a specialist doctorfor a supervised guide on how to lose belly fat without stopping the healing process.

bibliographic references

Moorman, Patricia & Schildkraut, Joellen & Iversen, Edwin & Myers, Evan & Gradison, Margaret & Warren, Nicolette & Wang, Frances. (2009). Prospective study of weight gain after premenopausal hysterectomy.Women's Health Magazine(2002). 18. 699-708. 10.1089/jwh.2008.1019.

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How do you get rid of stubborn belly fat after a hysterectomy? ›

Belly Toning Exercises after Hysterectomy Routine
  1. Leg extend above ground (or modify by sliding foot long the ground wearing a sock)
  2. Pelvic tilts.
  3. Knee lifts.
  4. Pelvic tilts.
  5. Knee lift, leg out to side (or modify with bent knee fallout core abdominal exercise)
  6. Pelvic tilts.

Why is my belly so big after hysterectomy? ›

No matter which type of hysterectomy you have, you'll have a post-op recovery period during which you need to rest so that your body can heal. If you had a regular exercise routine or were very active before surgery, this recovery time may cause you to pack on some pounds.

What is the best way to lose weight after a hysterectomy? ›

Eating a diet high in fruits and vegetables, low in saturated fats. Exercising on a regular basis, about 150 minutes per week (unless engaging in aerobic exercise, in which case 75 minutes per week may be adequate) Allowing extra time for sleeping at night. Asking your medical provider for some hormone therapy.

When will my stomach go down after hysterectomy? ›

You will probably notice that your belly is swollen and puffy. This is common. The swelling will take several weeks to go down. You may take about 4 to 6 weeks to fully recover.

How do you get rid of an apron belly without surgery? ›

4 Tips for Getting Rid of Your Apron Belly
  1. Exercise Regularly: One of the most effective ways to reduce an apron belly is to exercise regularly. ...
  2. Focus on Your Core: Besides overall exercise, focusing on your core muscles is essential. ...
  3. Eat a Healthy Diet: Your diet can also play a role in reducing an apron belly.

How do you get rid of apron belly with surgery? ›

The surgeon may make a cut from under your breast bone to just above your pelvic bone. A horizontal cut is made in your lower belly, just above the pubic area. The surgeon will remove the overhanging extra skin and fat, called an apron or pannus. The surgeon will close your cut with sutures (stitches).

Why do I have an apron belly? ›

Also known as a pannus stomach or mother's apron, apron belly occurs when the belly and fat surrounding the internal organs expands due to weight gain or pregnancy, resulting in additional fat deposits in the omentum (an apron-like flap under your abdominal muscles and in front of your intestines.)

Should I wear a belly band after hysterectomy? ›

Using an abdominal binder after a hysterectomy may help: hold your abdominal muscles together to relieve pain. increase circulation at your surgical site to promote healing and decrease swelling. make physical activity more comfortable.

What is the bulge after hysterectomy? ›

Vaginal Vault Prolapse (After Hysterectomy)

The top of the vagina drops down, creating a bulge. In severe cases, the top of the vagina may protrude outside of the vagina. It also may occur with small intestine prolapse (shown here), anterior vaginal wall prolapse, or posterior vaginal vault prolapse.

Why have I gained so much weight after hysterectomy? ›

The most common reasons for weight gain after a hysterectomy are a lack of exercise, proper diet, and focus on mental health post-operation.

Is it harder to lose weight after hysterectomy? ›

The bottom line. There's no connection between hysterectomy and weight loss. Any weight loss noticed after a hysterectomy probably has an unrelated cause. Always talk to your doctor about any unintentional weight loss, as there could be an underlying condition at play.

Does your body physically change after hysterectomy? ›

A hysterectomy alone can also cause changes in your body. The loss of the uterus may speed up the decline of the ovaries, and ovary failure will bring about menopause. Women who have both ovaries removed before reaching natural menopause carry a long-term risk for age-related health issues.

Does your belly change after hysterectomy? ›

No matter which type of hysterectomy you have, you'll have more room in your abdomen after, because the space your uterus was taking up is now empty. Your intestines will take up most of the space, but it's important to understand what happens to the other nearby organs after a hysterectomy.

What problems with stomach after hysterectomy? ›

Why Do I Feel Bloated And Have Belly Button Pain After a Hysterectomy? The bloated sensation can come within the first month post-op and may be due to the insufflation of the abdomen (air placed in the abdomen to help the surgeon see) required for the surgery.

Can you wear a waist trainer after hysterectomy? ›

For some people, experts say — especially those with weakened abdominal muscles, often after a major surgery like a C-section, hysterectomy or bowel surgery — this can be true. A waist trainer may be useful in supporting them in the early stages of healing and rebuilding their core.

How can I hide my hanging belly? ›

  1. Shift the show to your legs. ...
  2. Dress in one color. ...
  3. Lose your belly in midis and maxis. ...
  4. Trim your torso with an open jacket. ...
  5. Hide your belly with a closed double-breasted jacket. ...
  6. Untuck your tops. ...
  7. Go big on top, narrow on bottom. ...
  8. Make a big statement somewhere else.
Jul 7, 2022

How do you get rid of pannus belly? ›

There is a process called panniculectomy that removes the pannus. It does not tighten the abdominal muscles by removing extra skin and fat, which gives you a flatter abdominal area. It can also be combined with a tummy tuck or any other abdominal procedure, if desired.

Can walking get rid of apron belly? ›

Increased Cardiovascular Exercise

Boosting cardiovascular exercise is one of the best ways to increase calorie expenditure for weight loss, which helps reduce apron belly in men and women.

What does pannus stomach look like? ›

A pannus stomach or abdominal pannus is when excess skin and fat begin to hang down from the abdomen. It can occur following pregnancy or weight changes and can cause emotional distress. When skin and fat around the abdomen hang down, it can resemble an apron.

What does apron belly look like? ›

What is an apron belly? Pregnancy, weight loss, and weight gain can cause you to have an excessive amount of fat, tissue, and skin hanging down from your abdomen. Called “apron belly” because it looks like you're wearing an apron around your waist, it can also be referred to as a pannus stomach.

Which is better Panniculectomy or tummy tuck? ›

If you have a significant amount of hanging fat and skin that covers your groin area, a panniculectomy is most likely the better option. If you have excess skin in your middle abdomen, or want tightening of separated stomach muscles, a tummy tuck is probably going to be the better fit.

How much does it cost to get rid of apron belly? ›

Surgical costs can range from $8,000 to $15,000 for this procedure to cover anesthesia, surgeon, and facility fees. Since the panniculectomy is not typically seen as cosmetic surgery, your insurance provider may help pay for the procedure.

How do I get rid of my menopausal apron belly? ›

Start with a mix of moderate and vigorous exercise to burn off menopausal weight gain. Your routine should include aerobic exercises like swimming, walking, bicycling, and running, as well as resistance or strength training. “What you want to employ now is high-intensity interval training (HIIT),” Dr. Peeke says.

Can coolsculpting get rid of apron belly? ›

Coolsculpting and liposuction will reduce the thickness of the tummy pouches, but will not tighten the lose skin. The apron of skin can only be removed by the tummy tuck procedure.

What is a hysterectomy belly band? ›

This hysterectomy binder by Belly Bands® is designed to provide optimal support and comfort after your surgical procedure. It is specifically tailored to fit your body shape and provide targeted compression to the affected area which can be especially helpful during the recovery period.

Can I wear a compression garment after a hysterectomy? ›

 TED (compression stockings) should be worn for 2 weeks after the procedure.  Discharge from hospital will usually occur two days after the operation. discomfort for a few days after the operation.  Dressings to remain intact for 3 weeks, then take off and shower and dry area as usual.

What is a hysterectomy belt? ›

Abdominal binders are compression belts that encircle abdomen, commonly used to augment the recovery process after abdominal surgery like exploratory laparotomy, cesarean section, bariatric surgery, hysterectomy, or spinal surgery.

What holds the bladder in place after a hysterectomy? ›

A pessary is a device that can be inserted into the vagina to support the bladder. Internal measurements of the vagina are taken to determine the size of pessary needed.

What is an endo belly after hysterectomy? ›

What Causes Bowel Endometriosis After a Hysterectomy? Endometriosis is when tissue similar to the lining of the uterus, also called the endometrium, grows outside the uterus. This tissue can grow anywhere in the abdomen and pelvis. About 3 to 37 percent of all cases affect the bowels.

What holds organs in place after hysterectomy? ›

After a hysterectomy, it's even more important to take care of your pelvic floor—the hammock-like system of muscles that holds your pelvic organs firmly in place.

Is it harder to lose weight after a full hysterectomy? ›

The bottom line. There's no connection between hysterectomy and weight loss. Any weight loss noticed after a hysterectomy probably has an unrelated cause. Always talk to your doctor about any unintentional weight loss, as there could be an underlying condition at play.

Does your waist change after a hysterectomy? ›

This causes a shortened, thickened midsection, protruding belly, and loss of the curve in the lower back, giving the appearance of a flat derriere. In some women, these changes cause those hated rolls of fat (weight gain or not). In others, it looks more like a pregnant belly.

What is the diet for weight loss after hysterectomy? ›

Plan your meals around lean proteins, whole grains, and fresh fruits and vegetables, and prep healthy meals to try and eliminate the temptation to reach for empty calories. If you have the opportunity, stocking your freezer with nutritious meals ahead of time can be a timesaver after surgery.

What are the exercises for the stomach after hysterectomy? ›

Gray-Swain recommends these exercises: — Sit on an exercise ball with your feet flat on the floor, hands akimbo and arching your back followed by contracting the tummy, or rectus, muscles and curling the shoulders toward the pelvis slightly. Release and repeat as many times as you feel comfortable.

What supplements to take after hysterectomy? ›

Naturopathic Solutions For Support After Hysterectomy
  • Zinc.
  • Calcium.
  • Vitamin A.
  • B-complex vitamins.
  • Vitamin C.
  • Vitamin D.
  • Vitamin E.
  • Vitamin K.
Aug 10, 2022

When can I lift 50 pounds after hysterectomy? ›

How Long Does It Take to Fully Recover From Hysterectomy? If you have abdominal surgery, complete recovery can take six to eight weeks, so you must be patient and allow your body to heal. For at least six weeks, avoid any heavy lifting (meaning items over 20 pounds).

How much does a complete hysterectomy weigh? ›

The average weight of the specimen was 700 grams (500, 2240). The average duration of surgery was 107 min (40, 300) and the average blood loss was 228 ml (10, 3200).

Why am I gaining so much weight after hysterectomy? ›

The most common reasons for weight gain after a hysterectomy are a lack of exercise, proper diet, and focus on mental health post-operation.

What replaces the cervix after hysterectomy? ›

Vaginal Cuff

After a woman has a total hysterectomy done, her cervix that once was the "closing" at the top of the vagina is no longer there. As a means for the vagina to remain closed, it is sewn together at the top which is then referred to as the vaginal cuff.

What keeps your organs in place after a hysterectomy? ›

After a hysterectomy, it's even more important to take care of your pelvic floor—the hammock-like system of muscles that holds your pelvic organs firmly in place.


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