Gestational diabetes diet is something you should know if doctors diagnosed you with gestational diabetes. So what is the diet for gestational diabetes? We will go over the definition of gestational diabetes, blood sugar goals during pregnancy, and the gestational diabetes diet.
It is a type of diabetes diagnosed during pregnancy. Just like type I and type 2 diabetes, gestational diabetes affects how your body uses glucose also known as sugar. Just like regular diabetes can be controlled with diet, a gestational diabetes diet can help control it up to 80 percent of women. Why is it so important? Because high blood sugars result from gestational diabetes that can affect you and your unborn baby’s health.
If you do not treat your gestational diabetes, you may end up having problems during or after pregnancy and your baby may be affected.
Gestational Diabetes Diet:
Pregnant women use more carbohydrates and need more calories than a nonpregnant woman. A standard recommendation for a pregnant woman is around 175g of carbohydrates total per day. Since you need carbohydrates for a healthy pregnancy; we do not recommend keto, no-carb or low-carb diets for gestational diabetes diet. Some studies have shown, that being in ketosis during pregnancy affects the baby’s IQ and mental capacity.
Having gestational diabetes requires finding a balance to prevent blood sugar spikes with fasting and after meals. By restricting your carbohydrates too much in your gestational diabetes diet, you are at risk of ketosis and it’s important to avoid ketosis during pregnancy as we already briefly discussed.
We recommend that pregnant women eat 3-4 meals and 2-4 snacks per day for the gestational diabetes diet. The key is to keep carbohydrate load distributed throughout the day to prevent blood sugar spikes. A rule of thumb could be eating 30-45 grams of carbohydrates per meal and about 15 to 20 g of carbohydrates per snack. Your individual needs depend on how much your blood sugars spike at 1 or 2 hours after a meal. Your fasting blood sugars are also very important.
If your blood sugar is spiking even with reduced carbohydrates down to 30 g per meal, then medication may be necessary. Since during pregnancy restricting carbohydrates too much is a definite “NO” then medication is the only solution in this situation. To prevent the complications of gestational diabetes, your fasting, 1-hour and 2-hour blood sugars must be well controlled.