Gestational diabetes, mainly known as gestational diabetes mellitus affects women during pregnancy and is caused when the insulin receptors in the body do not function properly. During pregnancy, the presence of human placental lactogen interferes with the insulin receptors thus results in the high blood glucose level. This type three diabetes eventually disappears after the birth of the baby if you maintain a gestational diabetes diet.
With the help of gestational diabetes diet, one can maintain the blood sugar level and have a healthy pregnancy. There are generally few symptoms which can be diagnosed by screening during pregnancy. The food plan or diet is the first step in the management of gestational diabetes followed by physical exercise and medications if necessary.
Risk for gestational diabetes
Gestational diabetes can cause to both women who were never diagnosed with it and women who had this type of diabetes previously. Gestational diabetes diet can help you control it from the early stage. The risk of this type three diabetes is high for pregnant women who can be affected with type 2 diabetes later in future. Few hints are:
Being overweight before pregnancy can increase the risk for gestational diabetes as extra weight affects the insulin receptors hence the hike in blood sugar level.
Women who are older or are pregnant in an older age can have a high risk of affecting with this type of diabetes.
- Family history:
People having a family history of diabetes always has a risk of affecting with diabetes especially women who had type 2 diabetes after pregnancy.
- Pre-diabetes diagnosis:
Women with elevated blood sugar levels before pregnancy are prone to gestational diabetes during it.
- Abdominal fat:
Researchers found that women with high level of abdominal fats in the first trimester of pregnancy are likely to develop gestational diabetes later in pregnancy.
Monitoring your blood sugar level can lead you to control it and also gives you an idea of what to include in your gestational diabetes diet in order to improve it. Making healthy changes in your diet not only helps you keep your baby healthy and avoid complications but also helps you to develop healthy habits for life. Few hints are:
- Do not skip meals:
You should try and eat moderate-sized meals at regular interval of time. The amount of meal and the time should be same. Moreover, you can eat snacks in between meals in small proportion which will help you keep your blood sugar level steady.
- Have good breakfast:
Having a good breakfast is necessary as it can help you maintain your blood sugar level throughout the morning. Try to have a breakfast with a low glycemic value such as whole grain cereal.
- High fiber foods:
Adding a plenty of high-fiber foods in your diet can help you keep your blood glucose level in check. Try to include fibrous fruits and vegetables in your diet for about five portions in a whole day. This is because it is low in glycemic value which does not raise your blood sugar level undesirably.
- Eat a variety:
In order to have a gestational diabetes diet, you should keep in mind to make your meals interesting and appealing as well as nutritious. Try to have different food items but maintain the nutrition content and amount in every meal.
- Cut down sugar and fats:
Saturated fats and sugary food item are a big No for your blood sugar level. Saturated fats can make you overweight in time which is not ideal for diabetes patients while sugary food items have simple sugars which can be used up by the body easily thus increasing the blood glucose level.
After a diagnosis of gestational diabetes diet, the first step of the treatment is to monitor or track your blood glucose level. It is very important to check your blood sugar level, at least four to five times a day so that you can keep a track and keep the level in check. Then you can consult a dietitian who can help you review your healthy food options and make a gestational diabetes diet plan. This contains food items along with the blood glucose number so that you can know what food items will affect the sugar level.