Archives for July 2015

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.

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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…]