New mum Caroline Berg Eriksen defends her post-baby six pack selfie, saying all mums should be proud of themselves after labour

A high profile new mum in Norway has kicked off a whirl of controversy by posting a photo of herself on Instagram just a few days after giving birth to her first baby.

Nothing unusual about a post-birth selfie of course, but blogger and WAG (she's married to Norway soccer star Lars-Kristian Eriksen) Caroline Berg Eriksen's picture was somewhat different to most new mums. For a start, she was posing in lingerie.

Just three days after going into labour, she uploaded the shot with the caption: "I feel so empty, and still not 4 days after birth."

What we should mention here is that 26-year-old Caroline is something of a fitness fanatic, running the biggest health and fitness blog in Norway. And she was working out five to six times a week right up until the end of the second trimester.

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While some of those who viewed the image were complimentary, many have been upset with her for giving new mums an unattainable, and for many unhealthy, image to strive towards.

User babo4ever commented: "Im not impressed by the body bc she was very fit before and worked out all through her pregnancy w personal trainer and I'm sure personal chef/nutritionist ... What amazes me is that after 4 days pp she has the energy (desire?) to get up, put on sexy lingerie, take a selfie and post it on IG!" (sic)

But Melissa Little, dietician with Foodtalk CIC, says women shouldn't compare themselves: "this woman is an exception and every woman is different.

"Some women will lose the weight immediately and other women will take up to a year to lose post- pregnancy weight."

She also explains that most women carry some extra weight for the first few months after pregnancy for a reason.

"It is recommended that they don't actively try to lose weight until at least six months post birth.  If you are eating healthily and being active and happen to lose weight that is fine but we would never recommend dieting.

"During the first few months, hormones, lack of sleep and increased appetite all mean our body is fighting to store fat (to feed our little ones), which makes trying to lose it a pretty thankless and incredibly challenging task."

What Melissa does recommend is a healthy diet high in fruits and vegetables and slow-release carbs such as whole grains, jacket potatoes with skins and popcorn for a long lasting energy kick.

"When energy levels dip it may be tempting to grab chocolate but this will only give a short energy burst leaving you lower than you were before."

It's also key to drink plenty of water, especially if you're breastfeeding and continue with a multivitamin to ensure you're meeting all the vitamin and mineral needs of your body. 

After the furore, Caroline responded, saying: “People kept telling me that my body would never be the same,” Berg Eriksen told ABC News. “I wanted to show everyone that’s not entirely true.

“Right after birth – like three minutes after – I felt like myself again.”

Whatever her motivations for posting the picture, it's not surprising it's engendered such jealousy, and made many women (mums or not) feel pretty bad about themselves. We're just reminding ourselves that as Melissa says, Caroline's an exception, not the rule.

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