Gestational Diabetes Diet

by Andrew Mills


Gestational diabetes is seen in pregnant women when they develop high blood sugar levels during pregnancy. Though it may not prove to be fatal for the mother, but it may lead to complications for the baby. Hence, treating gestational diabetes with adequate exercise and appropriate gestational diabetes diet becomes extremely essential.

The right amount of calorie-intake coupled with sufficient nutrients in the diet is the key to any diet for gestational diabetes. Carbohydrates found in sweets, milk & milk products, cereal, bread, starchy vegetables such as potatoes are the main source of sugar in the blood. Over consumption of carbohydrate can lead to sudden rise in the blood sugar level. Hence, it is best to consult a registered nutritionist or dietician to lay down a gestational diabetes diet plan for you.

Your gestational diabetes diet plan will be customized as per your needs and requirements of the body since it depends on your weight now and before pregnancy, your physical activity level, blood sugar level, etc. Only after considering all these factors your nutritionist will suggest you the right amounts of carbohydrates, proteins and fats you need everyday in your diet.

Another guideline is to always spread the intake of carbohydrates throughout the day. A sample diet for gestational diabetes will always depict three meals in addition to two –four snacks each day. It is advised to have a light snack before going to bed so as to avoid low blood sugar at night. Remaining empty stomach for 5 hours or more can lead to creation of ketones, which may be harmful for the child.

When the carbohydrate intake is divided evenly throughout the day, the blood sugar does not rise suddenly. It is best to avoid sweets, deserts, aerated drinks which have high carbohydrate but no nutrients as such.

Skipping meals or restricting diet causes more harm than any gain whatsoever. Avoiding carbohydrate in the diet can also prove to be harmful since energy will not be produced. Establishing the right mix between gestational diabetes diet and the right blood sugar level takes time. Constant monitoring by the dietician is therefore necessary. She will design and plan various methods that best suits you.

In pregnant women, sugar is absorbed quickly in the blood. So diabetes diet gestational restriction is to avoid the various forms of sugar like simple table sugar, honey, brown sugar, corn syrup, turbinado sugar. Artificial sweetener such as aspartame is considered safe but not for a long time. Saccharin, mannitol, sorbitol are harmful artificial sweeteners.

A sample diet for gestational diabetes can include tomato juice since it has low sugar. Fructose is another form of sugar, which gets absorbed slowly in the blood but is as calorific as table sugar. Fiber should be an essential ingredient and the fat content is restrained in the diet for gestational diabetes. If insulin injection is recommended, it should be taken according to the time and amounts of the food intake.


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