Whether you took the glucola test during your second trimester or took a different route for monitoring blood sugar levels, you may find yourself with gestational diabetes. Gestational diabetes is a serious condition but can be managed naturally (and even reversed!).
- What Is Gestational Diabetes?
- When to Test for Gestational Diabetes
- Gestational Diabetes Prevention
- What Are the Risks of Gestational Diabetes?
- What Is Considered Good Blood Sugar During Pregnancy?
- Treatment for Gestational Diabetes
- How to Monitor and Stabilize Blood Sugar Naturally
- A Real Food Diet for Gestational Diabetes: Bottom Line
What Is Gestational Diabetes? ^
Gestational diabetes (GD) is defined as diabetes that is first diagnosed during pregnancy. It can also be called “insulin resistance” or “carbohydrate intolerance” during pregnancy.
These last two definitions are most accurate because GD means a woman can’t tolerate large amounts of carbohydrates without getting high blood sugar.
Some practitioners say that GD is a predictor for later diabetes. In reality, GD may be a sign of early pre-diabetes. That means GD may be a blessing in disguise because it can alert us to underlying blood sugar issues.
All women have slight insulin resistance during pregnancy. This is because blood sugar is the best way to feed a growing baby and very low blood sugar could be dangerous. In nature, famine is an occasional reality, so this insulin resistance is a good and protective thing. But in our society, with simple carbohydrates more accessible than complex ones (or healthy meats and vegetables), insulin resistance during pregnancy is unnecessary and potentially problematic.
When to Test for Gestational Diabetes ^
Typically doctors test for diabetes in the second trimester (around 24-28 weeks). This is because GD was thought to only occur at this time when placental hormones and insulin resistance surge.
But some research shows that earlier testing is beneficial.
Women with GD have a 7 times higher risk of developing type 2 diabetes later in life, according to research published in the Lancet.
This research implies that GD is not just a phenomenon of pregnancy and is related to something already going on in the body.
In one study published in Diabetes Care, a first trimester A1c reading of 5.9% or higher was indicative of GD later in the pregnancy. In fact, this reading accurately predicted the development of GD 98.4% of the time.
It would make sense then, to monitor blood sugar early and often.
Gestational Diabetes Prevention ^
If gestational diabetes is a sign that the body isn’t able to handle carbohydrates well (during pregnancy and before) it would make sense that GD is related to diet and lifestyle factors. Research shows that a healthy lifestyle reduces the risk of gestational diabetes.
- A combination of exercising, healthy eating, and not smoking reduced GD by 41 percent in a 2014 cohort study.
- A 2004 case-control study found that exercise before conception and during early pregnancy reduced the risk of GD by as much as 78 percent.
- Protein intake in the first trimester may also protect against GD, research in a 2010 study shows.
- Healthy weight preconception is also important. A study found that healthy weight before conceiving reduces GD risk.
- One study found that women who were deficient in vitamin D were significantly more likely to get GD.
Also, have your A1c checked early in pregnancy. As described above, this can accurately predict whether you will develop GD and you can make dietary and lifestyle changes early.
What Are the Risks of Gestational Diabetes? ^
Untreated gestational diabetes can have unfortunate consequences for both mom and baby. Complications related to GD include:
- Preeclampsia, preterm birth, and stillbirth
- Birth defects
- Macrosomia (being born large at birth)
- Shoulder dystocia (shoulders are stuck in the birth canal)
- Hypoglycemia (baby’s blood sugar is too low at birth)
- Permanent changes to baby’s blood sugar regulation and metabolism
One of the most concerning risks of gestational diabetes is the last bullet point. When a baby is exposed to high blood sugar in the uterus its pancreas has to produce more insulin to compensate. This can cause an accumulation of fat on the body and in the fetal pancreas, according to this HAPO study. This accumulation of fat predisposes the baby to metabolic issues later in life.
Studies show that children who are exposed to gestational diabetes in the womb are much more likely to have blood sugar issues and suffer from obesity.
So, healthy blood sugar during pregnancy is important for not only a healthy pregnancy and delivery but for baby’s lifetime health!
What Is Considered Good Blood Sugar During Pregnancy? ^
If healthy blood sugar is so important, we need to know what healthy blood sugar is! It looks like the answer is not so clear cut though.
Some babies born with macrosomia (large at birth) are born to women with undiagnosed gestational diabetes. But the majority of babies born with macrosomia are born to women with no gestational diabetes but who suffer from obesity. This information is making some researchers of a 2011 review question what a healthy blood sugar really is.
The above review found that blood glucose levels in normal pregnancy (with no obesity) is lower than the level recommended for those with gestational diabetes. In other words, if you end up with gestational diabetes and you work to keep your blood sugar within the recommended range, you could still end up with complications from gestational diabetes. Even mild elevation in blood sugar can be problematic.
It makes more sense to try to align blood sugar levels with those of normal pregnancy. For example, instead of trying to keep fasting blood sugar below 90 to 95mg/dl, which is what is recommended by the American Diabetes Association, it may be better to keep it within the range of 70.9 +/- 7.8mg/dl.
Treatment for Gestational Diabetes ^
Luckily, even conventional treatment suggests a healthy or balanced diet and exercise before resorting to insulin or medications. Unfortunately, the kind of diet conventional healthcare providers recommend may leave some room for improvement.
Conventional wisdom tells us that whole grains (like whole grain bread) and dairy (especially milk) are healthy foods. In reality, both of these provide a large amount of carbohydrates and very little nutrition (raw milk is okay in moderation if it doesn’t spike your blood sugar).
Because carbohydrates are so important during pregnancy many clinicians are wary of restricting pregnant women’s carbohydrate intake. It’s generally accepted that pregnant women should be no less than 175 carbohydrates each day. This guideline is followed for women with gestational diabetes as well.
The concern is that starvation ketosis or diabetic ketoacidosis can be harmful in pregnancy. However, research published in Diabetes shows that low-level pregnancy ketosis is common and does not carry the same risks including fetal brain development.
This makes sense when you think about the biological reason that women have slight insulin resistance. Pregnancy insulin resistance is the protection against dangerously low blood sugar.
Here is the difference between dangerous ketosis and normal ketosis:
- Starvation ketosis – This occurs when glycogen stores are used up and the body resorts to ketones for energy. This can happen as early as 12 hours after the last meal but often takes 3 to 12 days to become serious.
- Diabetic ketoacidosis – This is a serious condition when blood sugar and insulin are not managed properly in diabetics.
- Ketosis or pregnancy ketosis – This is a normal part of being human. For example, we enter ketosis when we stop eating at night and go to sleep until breakfast. In pregnancy, ketosis is normal too. Pregnant women who suffer from morning sickness often go in and out of ketosis based on what they can tolerate eating. Ketosis is even more common in late pregnancy when there’s not as much room in the stomach. Babies in the womb need ketones and glucose to grow!
Bottom line: If our bodies could not adapt to times when there were less than 175g carbohydrates available every day we would not have survived very long. The bigger problem seems to be when carbohydrates are too easily available, according to researchers of a 2005 study. They found that a low-glycemic index diet reduces the likelihood that a pregnant woman will need insulin.
How to Monitor and Stabilize Blood Sugar Naturally ^
There are three main things you need to do to make sure your blood sugar is in a healthy range. The first thing is to monitor your blood sugar in the morning (fasting) and after each meal. This will give you information to figure out how certain foods affect your blood sugar.
The next is to exercise regularly. Exercise lowers blood sugar, so it’s especially important for those who are having trouble lowering blood sugar levels. The American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) recommend 30 minutes a day.
Lastly, eating a healthy diet is vital for keeping blood sugar under control.
A Real Food Gestational Diabetes Diet
Restricting carbohydrates isn’t the only dietary consideration women with gestational diabetes need to make. The diet as a whole needs to be looked at and not just one part. Additionally, there are many different kinds of carbohydrates and some are better than others. Here’s a look at what a gestational diabetes diet should look like:
- Protein: Most women need 80+ grams of protein every day for a healthy pregnancy. Protein helps regulate blood sugar and is essential for baby’s growth. Healthy sources of protein include pastured eggs, meat/poultry, butter, wild caught fish, and gelatin or collagen (best from bone broth).
- Healthy fats: Consuming adequate fats is vital to baby’s organ and brain development and is important for blood sugar regulation. Healthy sources include meat (including red meat), butter, eggs, olive oil, coconut oil, nuts, limited dairy, etc.
- Vegetables and Fruits: Vegetables and fruits have a variety of vitamins, minerals, and fiber that are helpful during pregnancy. The fiber is especially important in regulating blood sugar.
- Water: Adequate water Intake supports the blood volume increase that happens during pregnancy as well as replenishes the amniotic fluid. But it’s helpful for regulating blood sugar too. Water dilutes the amount of sugar in the bloodstream. Around a gallon, a day is a good rule of thumb.
- Moderate to low carbohydrates from healthy sources – Carbohydrates from healthy sources like sweet potatoes and other starchy vegetable are okay. However, if you need to restrict carbohydrates further, stick with non-starchy vegetables, which also provide carbohydrates. Anything with a high glycemic load (like fruit juice or anything with added sugar) should be avoided altogether (not just during pregnancy!).
The number of carbohydrates each woman should eat will vary. A good way to gauge what’s right for you is to track your blood sugar levels throughout the day in relation to your regular diet. Then you can make adjustments based on what you find. One way to keep track of the kinds of foods you are eating is to make a meal plan (I use Real Plans) which will help you plan healthy meals and can help you remember what you have eaten recently.
More Tips for Keeping Blood Sugar Stable
What you eat isn’t all you need to think about. How you eat can affect blood sugar too. Here are some more tips for getting blood sugar under control during pregnancy:
- Eat carbohydrates along with healthy protein and fat to balance blood sugar
- Get outside! Or at least take a vitamin D supplement. Many midwives and doctors will test your vitamin D levels during pregnancy so you will know how much to supplement.
- Choose full fat, pastured dairy products, but keep them in moderation.
- When you eat starchy foods (like sweet potatoes) eat them in moderation along with healthy protein and fat.
- Spread your servings of carbs throughout the day. For example, have fruit with breakfast, squash with lunch and sweet potatoes with dinner. Try to avoid eating carbs on their own as a snack.
- Keep tabs on how different foods and different combinations of foods affect your blood sugar throughout the day.
The biggest take away is to monitor how food affects your blood sugar and adjust as needed.
A Real Food Diet for Gestational Diabetes: Bottom Line ^
Having any kind of pregnancy complication can cause some anxiety. No one wants to have gestational diabetes. But being informed and taking early steps to help prevent gestational diabetes can help you avoid blood sugar issues during pregnancy and beyond.
Have you ever been diagnosed with GD? What blood sugar regulating tips worked for you?
- Bellamy, L., Casas, J. P., Hingorani, A. D., & Williams, D. (2009, May 23). Type 2 diabetes mellitus after gestational diabetes: A systematic review and meta-analysis. Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19465232
- Hughes, R. C., Moore, M. P., Gullam, J. E., Mohamed, K., & Rowan, J. (2014, November). An early pregnancy HbA1c ≥5.9% (41 mmol/mol) is optimal for detecting diabetes and identifies women at increased risk of adverse pregnancy outcomes. Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25190675
- Zhang, C., Tobias, D. K., Chavarro, J. E., Bao, W., Wang, D., Ley, S. H., & Hu, F. B. (2014, September 30). Adherence to healthy lifestyle and risk of gestational diabetes mellitus: Prospective cohort study. Retrieved from https://www.bmj.com/content/349/bmj.g5450
- Dempsey, J. C., Butler, C. L., Sorensen, T. K., Lee, I. M., Thompson, M. L., Miller, R. S., . . . Williams, M. A. (2004, November). A case-control study of maternal recreational physical activity and risk of gestational diabetes mellitus. Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15533588
- Kim, H., Toyofuku, Y., Lynn, F. C., Chak, E., Uchida, T., Mizukami, H., . . . German, M. S. (2010, July). Serotonin regulates pancreatic beta cell mass during pregnancy. Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20581837
- Kim, S. Y., England, L., Wilson, H. G., Bish, C., Satten, G. A., & Dietz, P. (2010, June). Percentage of gestational diabetes mellitus attributable to overweight and obesity. Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20395581
- Zhang, C., Qiu, C., Hu, F. B., David, R. M., Dam, R. M., Bralley, A., & Williams, M. A. (2008). Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2582131/
- Gestational diabetes. (2017, April 28). Retrieved from https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/gestational-diabetes/symptoms-causes/syc-20355339
- Schaefer-Graf, U. M., Buchanan, T. A., Xiang, A., Songster, G., Montoro, M., & Kjos, S. L. (2000, February). Patterns of congenital anomalies and relationship to initial maternal fasting glucose levels in pregnancies complicated by type 2 and gestational diabetes. Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/10694330
- Holder, T., Giannini, C., Santoro, N., Pierpont, B., Shaw, M., Duran, E., . . . Weiss, R. (2014, November). A low disposition index in adolescent offspring of mothers with gestational diabetes: A risk marker for the development of impaired glucose tolerance in youth. Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25168408
- Boney, C. M., Verma, A., Tucker, R., & Vohr, B. R. (2005, March). Metabolic syndrome in childhood: Association with birth weight, maternal obesity, and gestational diabetes mellitus. Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15741354
- Hernandez, T. L., Friedman, J. E., Pelt, R. E., & Barbour, L. A. (2011, July 01). Patterns of Glycemia in Normal Pregnancy. Retrieved from http://care.diabetesjournals.org/content/34/7/1660.full
- Coetzee, E. J., Jackson, W. P., & Berman, P. A. (1980, March). Ketonuria in pregnancy–with special reference to calorie-restricted food intake in obese diabetics. Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/6769724
- Kopp, W. (n.d.). Role of high-insulinogenic nutrition in the etiology of gestational diabetes mellitus. Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15533622
- Exercise during pregnancy and the postpartum period. ACOG Technical Bulletin Number 189–February 1994. (1994, April). Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/7913067
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Thanks for posting this! I had gestational diabetes during my pregnancy and it was one of the most frustrating and depressing seasons of my life. I had no traditional risk factors other than maternal age over 30, although since then I’ve done a lot of research and discovered there is a link between autoimmune disease and gestational diabetes. My sister also had it with both pregnancies and she also has autoimmune health issues. I could talk on and on about my experience, what I learned, what I will do differently next time, etc (supplements, exercise, diet). I pressed hard against the prescribed diet and ate real foods, and as few carbs as possible, although it still wasn’t enough and I had to use medication which really didn’t help much either. I felt like the focus was on birthing a baby of a certain size rather than on our day-to-day health and well-being. In the end my son was born healthy at 39 weeks with barely any sign that his mom had gestational diabetes. Our great frustration is that he is now allergic to all the foods I was required to eat in large quantities for that diet- dairy, eggs, chicken, blueberries.
“moms with gestational diabetes who keep their blood sugar levels at normal levels have no higher risk of complications.” Then they don’t really have gestational diabetes if their level are normal, do they? 😉 I thought that was amusing.
Dr. Brewer’s Pregnancy Diet is an excellent resource that eliminates many pregnancy complications. His requirement is to eat 80g-100g of protein a day for the growing baby in addition to all his required servings of fruit, vegetables, salt, fats, and carbs. You’re to have a minimum of 4 servings of carbs. But, let me tell you, with all that protein you’re consuming as the building blocks of life, you won’t have much room for more than 4 servings of carbs anyway. It’s a great resource you can get from Amazon.
I was diagnosed with GD during both of my pregnancies; however, it was so easy to control my glucose with diet that my glucose numbers were always between 80-120 mg/dL, 1-hour post-prandial. Taking the glucose challenge test proved to me only that I could not tolerate 50 grams of glucose while pregnant on an empty stomach. So, my glucose levels were very well controlled, but that did not mean that I did not have gestational diabetes. During my first round of it, I had to work very hard to keep the numbers under the limit of 130 mg/dL (which now I find to be even too lenient for optimal glucose levels). My fasting glucose levels were never elevated. I clearly have issues with starches. I had one meal of an adzuki bean and yam hash with kale and my glucose spiked to 160 mg/dL! It sounds so healthy, right? However, starch is problematic. Even though I am no longer pregnant, I still cannot tolerate starches in great quantities and mostly I avoid them. I do not eat grains, beans, potatoes and only occasional sweet potatoes. I gave up all forms of sweeteners when pregnant (thinking those were the problem), however, I handle honey/maple syrup better than starchy foods. I hated the dietician-approved program of eating 2 servings of this and 2 of that and 3 of something else. It was annoying. If pregnant again, I’ll just skip the starches, eat whatever else I want, check my glucose regularly and be on my merry way. Neither of my kids were huge either (one was 7lbs. 8 oz, and the second was 8 lbs, 9 oz). I didn’t gain excessive weight (my doctor was totally obsessed with my monthly weight gain because of the diagnosis). The whole diagnosis of gestational diabetes can be a real pain to deal with without the right kind of help. In my “Sweet Success” journal book all kinds of crap foods were “allowed” (Diet Coke? Crackers? Bread? Pasta? Rice?). Yeah, my best wishes to mommies trying to do their best with those recommendations. It will be an uphill battle at best trying to control the glucose levels. Protein, vegetables, a little fruit (low on the glycemic index), higher fat dairy…
Thanks for this post! I certainly wish I had better information the first time around and didn’t have to use myself as my own personal guinea pig to experiment which foods worked and which didn’t. If someone had just pointed to starches at the gate, life would have been a lot easier! Instead of hearing snarky comments like, “You do know that *half* a banana is one serving, right?” Yeah, maybe not eating bananas at all would have been easier!
They do still have gestational diabetes…they’re just managing it to normal levels through diet. And working very hard to do it, thank you very much.
Yes!! Totally agree! It is very hard work.
I wish that I had known all of this twenty years ago. I had GD with both of my children, fortunately they were both born healthy. Diet and exercise worked the first time but needed insulin with the second. The only good thing about having GD was that I ate healthier and exercised more. Now I know that the “healthy” diet the nutritionist recommended was horrible. I have been gluten free for several years and I feel that I should have been gluten free when I was pregnant.
I wasn’t the typical GD; the Diabetes center was always telling me that I needed to gain more weight throughout my pregnancy. Thankfully my OB/GYN called them and told them I (and my baby) were healthy and to stop causing me unnecessary stress. My fasting levels are checked every year or so because of my high risk of developing Type 2 diabetes. I’m fine for now and I know that my real food diet makes the world of difference.
I had GDM with my first pregnancy despite doing everything “right”. I was able to get my blood sugars under tight control basically how you suggested- monitoring and adjusting my diet accordingly. I am pregnant again and had hoped to start doing the same right away. I still haven’t gotten my glucose monitor, but it’s a moot point because I can’t eat ANYTHING but simple, white carbs. I’m so nauseous and all I can tolerate (barely) is crackers, bread, rice, and watered down juice or broth. I feel so guilty because I know everything I’m eating is terrible, but I don’t know what else to do. And I haven’t been able to exercise because I’m feeling so blah. Any suggestions?
Christine | Once Upon a Time in a Bed of Wildflowers
This is awesome information! I had GD when I was pregnant with my Pixie, and I wish I had had it then. On the other hand, I think I am actually glad I was diagnosed with GD, because it certainly gave me a huge kick in the butt down the path of healthy living, good nutrition, and label reading! 🙂
Thanks for the excellent article, I hope I get to read the book some day! I did want to include a little more info on consuming nuts in pregnancy though and would love to know your thoughts on this article. Thanks! http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2008/08/09/just-say-no-to-nuts-during-pregnancy.aspx
I had GD with my first pregnancy (failed the 1-hr post-prandial only; the 2-hr and fasting were fine); however, it was easily controlled by minimizing carbs and I had no further complications. The worst part of the experience was after my daughter was born, the nurses came in to draw her blood every hour to check her blood sugar levels. She would cry in pain and it was very difficult for me to watch. I followed a Paleo diet for the next two+ years, and did not fail the glucose test with my second pregnancy.
Great post! I love this line especially:
“did they fail diet therapy, or did diet therapy fail them?”
I am Nithya from India. I am 12 weeks pregnant now. In my first pregnancy I had gestational diabetes. So we tested for hb a1c at 7 weeks. It is 6%. So I am following the diet with no sugar content limited carbohydrates.
I am using D-Protein powder. Is there any health drinks with DHA and all other nutritions packed with protein to drink during gestational diabetes like mothers Horlicks, grd smart, nestle baby and me.
Thanks so much for this common sense advice. I’m 14 wks pregnant and being tested early for gestational diabetes next week. Pre-pregnancy I had very well controlled insulin resistance/PCOS so I’m at risk.
I’ve had a look at the Australian dietary guidelines for GD and I was horrified to see around 200g of carbs a day, low fat dairy and 2 small serves of lean protein recommended. That would have made me put on weight even pre-pregnancy. Now I’m over the morning sickness I’ll get back to my pre-pregnancy diet of lower carb, real whole foods.
This was very interesting, thank you for sharing! The dietician I was seeing told me to eat 135 g of carbs a day (30 at each meal and 15 at each snack)! I was diagnosed with GD because I scored 5.3 fasting (and you need to get below 5.3), but my 1 hour and 2 hour levels were fine. I am trying my best to diet control this but my fasting sugars fluctuate (5-5.5). I went on night time insulin for a few weeks (numbers still fluctuated) but it gave me horrible bowel movements and bowel discomfort so I stopped it (as per family doctor). I am back to trying to stabilize it through diet and exercise now…only 2 more weeks to go in pregnancy so hopefully I’m doing enough…its always the worry right, that we aren’t doing enough!
This is so incredibly informative! I had GD with my first, I was only 20 years old and 112 pounds! I was completely shocked and guilt ridden. What did I do wrong? I managed my numbers with diet but it is a test of willpower for sure! I’m preg with my second 3 years later, still too early to tell if I have it again but I will say it was actually a blessing. I still practice a low carb diet since I know now exactly how sugar affects you! If I didn’t get GD I would still be clueless! Great article and thank you for your insight !
Eat food moderately. There are hidden sugar in some food and drinks, people really need to read the labels for their own health.
My wife has completed her first trimester. Is there any special kind of food apart from the diabetes diet that you mentioned in your guide? If yes then please reply. I want to take care of my wife just like her mother would have did if she was alive.
A lot of the info was helpful, but some of it makes me feel like it’s my fault I have GD. My doctor and dietician have been really supportive and have kept me from getting too “in my head” about why I’ve ended up with GD. Reading the beginning part of this article makes me feel like it’s just a matter of time before I develop type 2 diabetes later in life. I am very focused on eating healthy and have been for my whole pregnancy (I’m now 28 weeks) and up until now I’ve felt that it was just bad luck that I ended up with GD. Reading this article makes me feel like it must have been something I did… Please remember that we are real people out there with emotions (which are most likely heightened due to pregnancy and recently finding out we have GD) and can be negatively effected by information given out with little thought to the emotional response by the people actually effected by this situation.
Agreed-I think the information is helpful but is written in a way that makes it seem that this is 100% avoidable. My pre-pregnancy BMI was 18 and I just failed the one hour gtt and the fundal height measurement was above expected. This sucks but there are physiological factors with the pregnancy that throw everything out of whack. If I just ate just protein and avoided carbs then there would be less of an issue for sure.
Very well written article indeed, thank you so much for sharing such information with us.
I was diagnosed not only with gestational diabetes, but pre-diabetes, early in my oldest daughter’s pregnancy and followed the hospital dietician’s dietary guidelines, but to no avail. I ended up on Metformin and insulin despite sticking to the recommended diet. Ironically, this book was published the day my daughter was born; I discovered it after a miscarriage and before my next pregnancy, as I wanted to decrease my chance of having another miscarriage, knowing high blood sugar is a risk factor. I went into that pregnancy healthier than I had been in years; when my labs came back in the first trimester, I not only did not register for pre-diabetes, but I also passed my gestational diabetes test. I did develop it later (I attribute it to not being able to keep much more than carbs down during my first trimester), but I was not prescribed any medication until much later in my pregnancy! This book is amazing and I recommend it to anyone dealing with gestatiobal diabetes!
Thank you for this! My first round with Gestational Diabetes (I’m now pregnant with my third round of GD), I met with the dietician at the Endocrinologist’s office and she told me to eat all kinds of things that would have blown my sugar out of the water. I wanted to control my levels with diet, so I had to do my own research. Looking into your book now. Thanks!
I was just diagnosed today. I already eat low carb which I’m now reading can actually make you MORE likely to fail, because your body is unaccustomed to 100g of pure sugar at once. I’m just shy of 30 weeks and have only gained 17lbs (normal weight pre-pregnancy). My midwife is now pushing me to meet with a “diabetes educator” and to have all kinds of extra ultrasounds. I am refusing both, because 1. I already eat low carb/mostly grain free (I’ll have a 4g net carb pita here and there but not often) and no way I’m jacking up my carbs to 175/day and 2. we all know that third tri ultrasounds are extremely inaccurate at predicting baby size, and I refuse to be bullied into an induction or c section because of it. I have agreed to test my blood sugars as often as my midwife would like. My midwife has now stopped responding to my messages and I fear she may discharge me. I am 7 months pregnant and may be looking at an unplanned, unassisted home birth or birthing in my car in the hospital parking lot. I’m scared and angry. I’m going to buy a glucometer and start tracking my blood sugar for myself and hope for the best. If anyone has any hope or words of encouragement it is much appreciated.
That’s truly horrible. I’ve never met a midwife who would abandon a client like that. Can you find anyone else? As for birthing unassisted, try looking into Hypnobabies. I’ve done it for my past four babies and nothing has given me more confidence, including one (accidentally) unassisted birth.
I’m actually a hypnobabies student; currently in maintenance 🙂 I did have an ultrasound last week and my midwife freaked out because my baby is 70th percentile. I still have only gained 17lbs (zero weight gain in the last month). I’ve been really anxious since diagnosis, with absolutely no reassurance from my midwives. When I have questions/concerns, they treat me like I’m being annoying or hormonal or just some nitwit, crazy pregnant woman. At my appointment yesterday I heard one of the midwives on the phone complaining about me on the phone and laughing when she talked about how anxious I was. I’m searching for a new provider. It was so humiliating yesterday having my appointment and having to pretend I didn’t hear the conversation a few minutes before. I’m continuing to eat very low carb and am actually visually smaller than I was last pregnancy (my 2 1/2 year old was 7lbs 13oz at birth). My bump size is perfectly spot-on and blood pressure is never over 110/70. I’m hoping I can find a new midwife this late in the game (30+_3 today) and my amazing doula is helping so much with assisting me in contacting other midwifery practices and even spent an hour on the phone with me talking me down from a panic attack last week, validating my feelings, etc. I’m hoping this is just a bump in the road and I will find a new midwife who will be a part of my amazing, supportive birth team. If not, I’ve instructed my husband to keep my current midwife the f*** away from me during birth as much as possible.
I am so sorry you experienced that, B. I hope you find a midwife that respects and supports you.
Also I’m happy to report that since checking my sugars 4x every day, my fasting is always below 88 and my post meal (2 hours) is 85-109. I even did one day checking at 1 and 3 hours post meal for a day just to make sure I wasn’t spiking early/late and I am not.
What are you eating morning, lunch and dinner- B?! I am at 30 weeks and newly diagnosed with GD and in absolute misery. I have seen dietician but this eat half a plate of veggies, small fist size meat and small size of bread/pasta/rice is NOT WORKING.
This morning after fasting my glucose was 132. After eating 1 biscuit and 1/3 cup of gravy, water and cup of coffee – my glucose was 245. Tested again, three minutes later, 185. Then 3 minutes later, 195…. WHAT AM I DOING WRONG?!
CKD care Plan
Thanks for this wonderful resource,
“Instead of trying to keep fasting blood sugar below 90 to 95mg/dl, which is what is recommended by the American Diabetes Association, it may be better to keep it within the range of 70.9 +/- 7.8mg/dl.”
I’m trying to figure out what this means in mmol/L (I’m Aussie). 90 mg/dl = 5mmol/L but I’m not sure what 70.9+/- 7.8mg/dl translates into. (What does the 7.8 refer to?) Does it essentially mean the fasting blood sugar should be at 4 mol/L?
Also, the ranges recommended in Australia are 4.0-6.9 mmol/L two hours after meals. In your opinion is this too high? What would a normal range for a non-diabetic be?
Love this post!