Diet for Gestational Diabetes: Where Do I Start?

Diet for Gestational Diabetes: Where Do I Start?

Diet for Gestational Diabetes

Gestational diabetes is brought on when a woman becomes pregnant; this process occurs due to the hormone changes within the body because of the placenta. During pregnancy, the placenta delivers nutrients to the uterus so that the fetus may develop. However, as the hormone levels in a woman’s body changes, their body may not be able to efficiently manage the glucose levels.

Although these changes are occurring, a woman’s pancreas will naturally produce more insulin to offset the indifference. It is when a woman’s pancreas is not able to produce more insulin that glucose levels within the body rise, which leads to gestational diabetes. However, there are some dietary techniques including meal plans one may employ to help manage their gestational diabetes condition.

Dietary Techniques

One may follow some basic dietary techniques in conjunction with choosing appropriate foods to help manage their gestational diabetes. It is beneficial for one to eat three small meals a day at breakfast, lunch and dinner. Also, it is also healthy to have two healthy snacks in-between meals throughout the day. It is important to not skip any of the meals or snacks because this helps to maintain insulin levels. When an individual is choosing foods to eat, it is wise to opt for fiber-rich, high-carbohydrate foods that will help to maintain glucose levels as well. However, during morning hours, it is not advisable to consume carbohydrate-rich foods as insulin levels are peaked at this time.

Foods & Drink

It is important for one to choose healthy foods and drinks to consume to help keep their gestational diabetes condition managed. Among choosing healthy foods, one should drink at least eight glasses of water per day to stay hydrated. Healthy food choices include: four servings of dairy foods, or 1200 mg of calcium/day, three servings of iron-rich foods such as rice, eggs or leafy-green vegetables. It is also beneficial for one to consume one food source containing vitamin C per day; this can be an orange, green bell pepper, kiwi, papaya or even a serving of brussel sprouts. Lastly, it also beneficial for one to consume one food source per day that is rich in vitamin A; this can include butternut squash, sweet potatoes, or carrots.

Other Tips

Final tips for one to try are to refrain from foods that are high in sugar, or fat as well as to avoid caffeine, alcohol, or tobacco. Drinking caffeine, alcohol or consuming tobacco products all can aggravate gestational diabetes as well as cause birth defects.

Following these dietary techniques and using a gestational diabetes meal plan will allow a woman to manage her gestational diabetes and keep it in control so that it does not ultimately affect their baby. Typically once the child has been delivered, a woman’s glucose levels will return to normal thus reversing the gestational diabetes condition.

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