Different Treatments for Gestational Diabetes

Different Treatments for Gestational Diabetes

treating gestational diabetesGestational diabetes is a condition marked by increased blood glucose levels during pregnancy. The condition goes away after the child is born, although there are some risks of type 2 diabetes and hypoglycemia after the birth or in the future. For the most part, gestational diabetes is easily treated.

Many women are scared when they hear that they have been diagnosed with gestational diabetes, but with advancements and understanding gained in modern medicine, treating gestational diabetes is quite simple. There is, of course, some danger to the mother and unborn child if the condition is left untreated. Following through with doctors’ orders and the likely simple treatment plans can ensure the health and well-being of both mother and child.

Diet

The most common treatment for gestational diabetes is following a healthy, diabetes friendly diet plan. No matter what other treatments your doctor offers, diet will be the most recommended treatment for your condition. This is because your diet has the biggest impact on your glucose levels.

A healthy, gestational diabetes friendly diet is one that is low in sugars and simple carbohydrates. Protein and complex carbohydrates are recommended, as well as lots of fresh vegetables. Part of your diet plan may also include tips such as:

•    Eat smaller, more frequent meals
•    Stay hydrated and choose water over juices or soda
•    Eat sugar free treats only in moderation
•    Balance any carbohydrates with a protein
•    Choose whole wheat breads, pastas, and crackers over processed white versions

Lifestyle

As part of a healthy diet, lifestyle changes may be recommended as well. Regular exercise can help you to stabilize your blood sugar levels. This is because exercise burns off excess glucose as well as calories.

Close Monitoring

Every woman with gestational diabetes will be asked to monitor her blood sugar levels regularly. Depending on your doctor and how severe your condition is, you may be asked to check your blood sugar levels multiple times a day. Testing your blood sugar is quite simple and while it might seem scary to some, it is actually painless.

Insulin Therapy

For more severe cases, insulin therapy may be necessary. In almost all cases, insulin can be administered via pills instead of injections.

While the diagnosis may be scary at first, gestational diabetes is actually a fairly easy condition to treat. Following through with the treatment plan that your physicians put out for you is very important to the health of both you and your unborn child.  For more information, click here.

Did I Cause My Gestational Diabetes?

Did I Cause My Gestational Diabetes?

did i cause my gestational diabetesWorrying is perhaps the number one past time of pregnant women everywhere. Pregnant women worry about the health of their baby, about how to prepare for the baby, and about just about every little thing down to whether or not they have enough tiny socks for their baby to wear when he is born. Women that have extra factors to worry about, such as gestational diabetes, probably experience this exponentially more.

Gestational diabetes also seems to bring forth a sense of guilt, as if the women that have gestational diabetes may have done something to ultimately case their condition. While there are factors that can contribute to contracting gestational diabetes, the answer to this notion is an overwhelming, astounding no. You did not, under any circumstances, cause gestational diabetes.

The True Cause of Gestational Diabetes

Ultimately, the causes of gestational diabetes are the changes, primarily hormonal changes, which occur in the body during pregnancy. There are two occurrences that are thought to contribute to gestational diabetes. The first is that the hormone insulin, which is supposed to convert glucose into energy, becomes ineffective. The second is that, while the body has become insulin resistant, the placenta is producing more hormones that cause a buildup of glucose. So these two factors together create the problem.

There are factors that can contribute to the likelihood of gestational diabetes. Some of these are factors that could be controlled by the mother, and some are genetic. Either way, these are merely factors that can contribute to the possibility of getting gestational diabetes, but do not in any way actually cause gestational diabetes.

Some factors that can contribute to the likelihood of gestational diabetes, but not cause it, are:

If the mother is very overweight before and during the pregnancy
If the mother gains too much weight too quickly during the pregnancy
A family history of type 2 diabetes
If the mother has a history of gestational diabetes in a previous pregnancy
If the mother has a history of poly-cystic ovarian syndrome
…and many others

Again, these factors do not cause gestational diabetes in any shape, form, or fashion. These are merely factors that could contribute to the likelihood of getting gestational diabetes. Many doctors use these factors as markers to determine if they should test for gestational diabetes earlier, to make sure that your pregnancy is as healthy as possible.

It is important to remember that women of all backgrounds, health profiles, shapes and sizes get gestational diabetes. In fact, a woman could have every single risk factor on the above list and more and not have gestational diabetes, while a woman who seems in perfect health with no risk factors at all could have it. In that way, gestational diabetes can be a very confusing condition. That is why doctors test every pregnant woman for gestational diabetes, no matter what.

So let some of that worry off your shoulders. There is virtually nothing you could do yourself to actually cause gestational diabetes. It is yet another example of the genetic lottery, one that no one could make any guesses at beforehand. Not only did you not cause your gestational diabetes, but you can have a happy and healthy pregnancy as well as a happy and healthy baby. All is well. Click here for more advice.

Vacation with Gestational Diabetes

Vacation with Gestational Diabetes

vacation with gestational diabetesAny extra activity can be a little extra difficult when you’re pregnant. You might be feeling more tired and uncomfortable than usual, not to mention off balance, as your body grows to accommodate your bundle of joy. Vacationing might seem like an impossible or at least a very tiring venture, especially in the later months of your pregnancy.
Taking a vacation with gestational diabetes may seem even more of a prospective pain. After all, you have likely gotten used to a certain routine that helps you stick to your gestational diabetes diet and you might be worried about what you could eat while on vacation.

All in all, taking a vacation could be excellent for you and your family. You need some time to yourself before your new baby is here, some time to have fun and live a bit more freely than you will be in a few short months. A vacation is the perfect opportunity to have some fun, and maybe even relax a bit in a way you can’t at home, when you are faced with the ever mounting tasks of getting ready for baby. [Read more…]

The After Effects of Gestational Diabetes

The After Effects of Gestational Diabetes

after gestational diabetesIf there is one thing a pregnant woman knows how to do well, it is worry. Women going through their pregnancies with the added stress of gestational diabetes can sometimes feel this even more so. There are so many questions, worries, and added concerns to think about. One common question about gestational diabetes is how or if it will affect you and your child after the baby is born.

Understanding Gestational Diabetes

The first thing to consider when answering this question is to understand what gestational diabetes is. Gestational diabetes is, in its simplest form, high blood sugar during pregnancy. Basically, hormones in your body cause the pancreas to produce extra insulin, but the insulin produced does not help to lower your glucose levels as it is supposed to do. [Read more…]

Is Meal Planning Realistic for Pregnancy?

Is Meal Planning Realistic for Pregnancy?

meal planning and gestational diabetesThe benefits of meal planning for virtually any diet are numerous. Meal planning is perhaps the number one way to stick to a healthy diet, and can make a healthier lifestyle significantly easier. Meal planning is a great way to manage a diabetic lifestyle in general, but is it realistic for pregnancy? Can you navigate the intricacies of pregnancy, such as food aversions, nausea, and cravings through meal planning?

The answer to this question comes in two parts. Yes, meal planning is still a realistic tool for managing gestational diabetes, but it may need to come with some level of flexibility. Navigating the intricacies of pregnancy, especially with gestational diabetes, will require both the structure of a well thought out plan as well as flexibility depending on your needs. [Read more…]

How to Balance Your Snacks with Gestational Diabetes

How to Balance Your Snacks with Gestational Diabetes

Balance Your Snacks with Gestational DiabetesThe world of eating for two with gestational diabetes is often a balancing game. Snacking can be especially intimidating if you do not know how to balance your snacks. As you well know, snacking is an important part of any healthy and balanced diet, but is especially important for women with gestational diabetes. Snacks help keep your blood sugar levels stable throughout the day so you can make it until your next meal. Not to mention that pregnancy cravings and hunger can be pretty brutal to navigate without regular snacks.

The Balancing Game Explained

The balancing game is all about carbohydrates and proteins and how to put them together to create a balanced snack that will work to keep your blood sugar levels stable. This simply means pairing your fruits and carbohydrates with a protein.

Carbohydrates are foods that break down in your system as sugar, and therefore can raise your blood sugar levels. Not all carbohydrates are created equal, however. There are “simple” carbohydrates, and “complex” carbohydrates. Simple carbohydrates are the kind that you want to avoid wherever possible, as they can create a spike in your blood sugar. Complex carbohydrates are healthier options that raise your blood sugar in a stable way. Any sort of food made with white flour or sugar is considered to be a simple carbohydrate. Complex carbohydrates are foods like whole grain or whole wheat flour products, vegetables, and beans.

Proteins are foods that help maintain healthy blood sugar levels, such as nuts, meats, and dairy products. Some proteins also include carbohydrates as part of their makeup, and also sugars. For example, many dairy products are also carbohydrates.

The carbohydrates and sugars raise your blood sugar, and the protein keeps the levels manageable and maintains healthy levels over time. Every snack should include some sort of protein to balance out the rest of your snack, and give you the nutrients you need not only to keep your blood sugar stabled, but to help keep you full until your next meal.

Balanced Snack Ideas

Putting together a healthy, balanced snack is no trouble at all once you get used to it. Simply pair your carbohydrate with protein. Here are some examples of easy, delicious, and balanced snacks for gestational diabetes:

Apple Slices with Cheese: Slice up a small apple and pair it with a few slices of low fat cheese. Apples also pair nicely with natural peanut butter.

Carrots and Hummus: The natural carbohydrates in both the carrots and the chickpeas are the healthy kind, and the protein in the hummus balances it all out perfectly. You can add in other fresh vegetables too, such as celery, broccoli, and cauliflower.

Whole Wheat Muffin with Peanut Butter: Half of a toasted whole wheat English muffin with some natural (unsweetened) peanut butter is a deliciously filling snack. You can also use cream cheese. Top with a couple sliced strawberries for something really special.

Creating healthy, balanced snacks with gestational diabetes is easy when you know the rules to the game. For further information, you can get a list of great protein options from either your doctor, nutritionist, or on reputable health websites. Start putting together your own combinations to create delicious and healthy snacks for every day. For more tips on gestational diabetes eating click here.

Hungry for Two with Gestational Diabetes

Hungry for Two with Gestational Diabetes

Hungry for Two with Gestational Diabetes According to doctors and obstetricians everywhere, “eating for two” is a myth. While pregnant women are usually allowed extra caloric intake per day, it is actually just 150 to 300 calories a day extra, depending on the woman. When you really think about it, that isn’t a whole lot of extra food. That’s maybe a yogurt cup and a cheese stick, a few extra crackers if you’re careful.

While “eating for two” might not be an actual thing, being hungry for two certainly is. Women everywhere, that have been or currently are pregnant, can attest to this fact. Pregnancy is different for every woman, so some women experience major hunger the whole way through their pregnancies, others just for a few weeks in the middle, others for the entire third trimester. After all, you are growing a human being from scratch, which takes a lot of energy, not to mention how fast that little one is growing.

[Read more…]

Managing Cravings with Gestational Diabetes

Managing Cravings with Gestational Diabetes

managing cravings with gestational diabetesAny woman that has ever been pregnant can tell you that pregnancy cravings are no joke. There are days that you will have cravings so strong, it feels like you might tear your hair out or just break down and cry if you can’t get what you want. You might get cravings so strong that it keeps you up at night. This is just another part of pregnancy, one that most pregnant women deal with, some stronger than others.

Navigating these cravings with gestational diabetes can be a struggle. Some of your cravings might unfortunately fall into the realm of unhealthy, or even dangerous, for your blood sugar levels. Figuring out how to manage these cravings is going to be an integral part of your healthy gestational diabetes diet. [Read more…]

What to Eat At Parties and Potlucks With Gestational Diabetes

What to Eat At Parties and Potlucks With Gestational Diabetes

What to Eat At Parties with gestational diabetesLiving with gestational diabetes can be difficult and confusing when it comes to eating at parties, potlucks, and other get-togethers. This is because “eating for two” has become even more important than you ever thought, as everything you eat has the potential to raise your blood sugar levels and cause you potential harm. Learning about what foods you can enjoy without worry, and which foods should be monitored or avoided, can help you navigate tricky situations such as parties and potlucks.

Safe Options

Typically, most parties and potlucks will have a few standard staples that are safe for women with gestational diabetes to enjoy. Vegetable and cheese trays are almost always present at these types of events, and you can almost never go wrong with fresh vegetables and some cheese squares. If the party offers a salad bar, then that’s even better. Fill your plate up with lots of vegetables and then start looking for some safe protein choices. If you are at a barbecue type event, you can usually get your hands on some grilled chicken or a hamburger patty.

All in Moderation

There are some foods that you can certainly enjoy, but make sure you are doing so only in moderation. Remember that carbohydrates are one of the biggest triggers for raised blood sugar levels. So keep your potato salad and casserole portions in check. As long as you are keeping track of how many carbohydrates you are consuming, you should be okay to indulge a little. Other things to watch out for are fruits, pasta dishes, potato dishes, and any dish that might include sweet sauces such as barbecue sauce.

What You Should Avoid

While there are certainly situations where it is okay to indulge in foods that you should normally avoid at all costs, you should absolutely know what foods are going to be on the “no” list. These foods are mostly obvious, as they are full of sugar and carbohydrates. So, while it might not be fun, you are going to want to avoid the dessert table with all of its cakes, pies, cookies, and other sweet treats. Most desserts pack a double whammy when it comes to the amount of sugar and simple carbohydrates. If you do end up indulging in these naughty foods, make sure that you are really watching your portion sizes. Also watch out for the little things that can creep up on you. For example, many parties will have little bowls of candy and other such party favors. It can be really easy to pop these in your mouth without paying attention to how much you are eating.

Other Rules to Consider

There are a few other things to consider when navigating the rules of eating with gestational diabetes. For example, it is always a good idea to be prepared when you are going to a party or potluck. This means keeping a few protein bars or other snacks in your purse just in case the options are particularly unhealthy or unappetizing because you do not want to end up skipping eating. Another thing to consider is your overall carbohydrate count. What this means, is that if you eat super clean and healthy during the rest of the day, you might be able to afford to indulge a little more during the party.

Eating for two with gestational diabetes can be a bit trickier, especially when it comes to navigating parties, potlucks, barbecues, and more. With these tips, you can educate and arm yourself to handle yourself in any situation. So go ahead and enjoy the festivities, and know that you are making the best choices for you and your little one.

Managing Food Aversions and Gestational Diabetes

Managing Food Aversions and Gestational Diabetes

food aversions and gestational diabetesIf there is one thing nearly every pregnant woman has dealt with, it is food aversions. When the slightest scent, taste, or even look of particular foods can send you running for the bathroom, cooking and eating become a whole other issue to contend with. To make matters more difficult, you now have to balance your food aversions and gestational diabetes. It is issues like this that make growing your little bundle of joy slightly less than joyful at times.

The good news is that there are some tips and techniques that can help you manage your food aversions and gestational diabetes. What works for one woman may not work for you, so be patient with yourself as you try and figure out what is going to help you through these difficult weeks of food aversions and morning sickness. [Read more…]