What Should Be My Calorie Intake With Gestational Diabetes?

What Should Be My Calorie Intake With Gestational Diabetes?

Just like in any other type of diabetes, women with gestational diabetes should watch what they eat. This is an important facet in the control and treatment of gestational diabetes. Neglecting you dietary restrictions and requirements will only worsen your gestational diabetes, leading to complications not just for you but also for your baby. To prevent these things from happening, health care providers and nutritionists advise women with gestational diabetes to watch their calorie intake. Thus, What Should Be My Calorie Intake With Gestational Diabetes? Special attention is paid to carbohydrates, since these are the sources of glucose that women with gestational diabetes are unable to fully utilize.

Assessment of gestational diabetes-calorie intake with gestational diabetes

Before giving you a meal plan and a list of foods to avoid, your health care provider will first assess your body weight, your total weight gain during pregnancy, and your eating habits before making recommendations on your diet. Remember, no two nutritionists will give you the same recommendations, since there are no hard and fast rules when it comes to a gestational diabetes diet. The food choices may vary, as long as you stick to the calorie intake recommended for you.

calorie intake with gestational diabetesYour eating habits will also make a large impact on your dietary recommendations. For example, if you are the type of person who gains weight quickly, then you might be asked to cut back on your caloric intake and to engage in exercises safe for pregnancy. If you have a sweet tooth, your doctor will recommend cutting back on those sugars and eating more fresh produce and lean proteins.

Calorie intake with gestational diabetics

For normal pregnant women, the recommended daily caloric intake is 2600 calories. Since you have gestational diabetes, doctors recommend having a slightly less caloric intake of 2000 to 2400 calories. It is only slightly lower than the normal recommendation because you are pregnant. As such, women are not advised to go on a restrictive diet during pregnancy, as this can adversely affect the health of your baby. Hence, doctors who recommend a lower calorie intake of 1500 to 1800 calories per day should know that they are putting both the mother and the baby in grave danger.

Although there is only a slight decrease in the daily caloric recommendation for women, what matters is how you distribute these calories into carbohydrates, fats, and proteins.

Breaking down the calories-Calorie Intake With Gestational Diabetes?

In general, you have to watch your carbohydrate intake, since too much carbs will lead to an increase in your blood sugar levels. Your total carbohydrate intake per day should make up less than half of your total caloric intake. This means around 175 grams of carbohydrates per day, evenly spaced out throughout the day into 15 to 30 grams per meal. Eat more vegetables, high-fiber foods, and whole grain carbohydrates. Ditch the sugary ones.

As for protein, you can have two to three servings per day. Protein-rich foods include meat, fish, eggs, nuts, and dry beans. Remember to trim all visible fat from the meat and, as much as possible, go skinless. For fats, limit your intake but do not totally remove them from your diet as they provide long-term energy for growth and brain development.

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Is It Normal For My Breasts To Hurt While Breastfeeding?

As we all know, breastfeeding is good for our babies. It has many advantages for the baby, since breast milk is full of nutrients that cannot otherwise be found in formula milk. However, what most people do not know is that breastfeeding can be a little uncomfortable. Some may experience pain while breastfeeding, wondering whether it is normal or already an alarming indication of something gone awry. Hence, here are some of the things that might make breastfeeding uncomfortable, but totally normal:

  • Sore nipples. It is normal for women to have sore nipples while breastfeeding. Remember that your babies suck your nipples while you feed them with breast milk. Naturally, this can feel uncomfortable during the first few times that you feed your baby since you are still getting used to it. However, after some days, it would not hurt as much. Some people say that breastfeeding only hurts if your baby did not latch on properly or you have poor positioning. However, most mothers say that this is a myth since breastfeeding hurts all the same, whether or not the technique is executed well. Nevertheless, you should take note that the pain should not be too extreme that it will make you dread breastfeeding your baby. If such pain is experienced, you should consult your doctor as this might be indicative of yeast infection.
  • Full breasts. Whenever your breasts are full of milk, it will undoubtedly feel heavy and a little painful. Hence, you have to prevent breast engorgement by feeding your baby even if you have to wake him up. Schedule a constant time that you will feed your baby, like every four to six hours. At first, your baby might cry a lot, but he will eventually get used to the routine. You can also tenderly massage your breasts or manually express them for later use.
  • Milk leakage. When your breasts are full and you cannot express it immediately, there may be instances when your nipples might leak milk. This can happen during the most inconvenient times and inopportune places. While you can breastfeed your baby in public, there are still some cultures who do not accept this public display, hence becoming a source of embarrassment. To solve this, do not forget to cover yourself during breastfeeding.

In spite of all the aforementioned things, the advantages of breastfeeding weigh more than its discomforts. One solution to all these discomforts is to make use of a breast pump like Medela in order to still feed breast milk to your baby without having to go through all the discomforts. Your baby will no longer have problems with latching on since he will just drink milk from the feeding bottle, hence sparing you from sore nipples and the risk of getting cracked nipples. Whenever your breasts are full and your baby is asleep, you can use a breast pump to empty your breasts of milk and prevent them from engorging. Milk leakage can also be prevented since you do not have to go out with full breasts anymore as you can express breast milk using a breast pump. Using a breast pump is also less time-consuming compared to breastfeeding.

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How Much Exercise Do I Need to Do When I Have Gestational Diabetes?

Most women are reluctant to exercise during their pregnancy. They are afraid that some exercises might cause harm to the baby they are carrying. When they are diagnosed with gestational diabetes, the fear of exercising increases since their condition becomes more delicate than normal pregnancy.

baby loveDespite this fear, doctors would even recommend exercising especially for pregnant women with gestational diabetes. The purpose of exercising is not to lose weight, but to maintain it and to prevent you from gaining excess weight that might be detrimental to you and your baby’s health. In gestational diabetes, your cells cannot utilize the excess glucose in your bloodstream because the insulin receptors in the cells are less responsive to insulin. That is the reason why you have to take the initiative of using up your excess glucose through exercising.

But exercising for pregnant women with gestational diabetes is not that simple. There are some considerations that you need to keep in mind to prevent adverse effects and complications. Here are some tips and guidelines that you need to remember to exercise safely during your gestational diabetes state:

  • Ask your doctor. First and foremost, your doctor should know about any exercise program that you are contemplating on starting. Your doctor will be able to advise you well on the dos and don’ts of exercising with gestational diabetes. In general, exercise is safe as long as you are not in danger of pre-term labor and delivery or you have no cardiovascular or pulmonary diseases that might hinder your ability to exercise. Ask your doctor for any warning signs or limitations in exercising during pregnancy.
  • Start slowly. If you were physically active before you got pregnant, take note that you cannot be as active as you were now that you are pregnant. High-impact sports should be avoided in general, and you have to start slow. You can try walking, yoga, and aerobics. Around 20 minutes per day three times a week is good to start, and you may increase your frequency as your body gets used to the exercise.  However, you should always ask your doctor about the amount of exercise that you should be doing. Ideally, you should be able to carry on a conversation comfortably while exercising.
  • Drink lots of water. Hydration is very important when you are exercising. This helps you prevent dehydration, which could lead to pre-term labor because it raises your body’s temperature. Drinking water while exercising can also prevent excess sodium in your body, thus avoiding swelling or edema.
  • Do not forget warm-up and cool-down exercises. Warming up prepares your muscles for exercise, helping you avoid stiffness and soreness in your muscles during and after exercising. Cooling down, on the other hand, gets your heart rate back to normal in a gradual manner. Warm-up and cool-down exercises should be done for about five to ten minutes per exercise routine.

Your pregnancy or gestational diabetes should never be a hindrance to your physical activities.

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Does Gestational Diabetes Get Worse With Subsequent Pregnancy?

Gestational Diabetes Subsequent Pregnancy

Gestational diabetes is a condition characterized by increased levels of glucose in the bloodstream during pregnancy. This is due to the fact that pregnancy produces hormones that increase insulin resistance, thus preventing glucose from entering the cells and being utilized into energy. I can affect gestational diabetes subsequent pregnancy!

gestational diabetes subsequent pregnancyOne of the worries that women have over gestational diabetes is its effect on their subsequent pregnancies. The first pregnancy with gestational diabetes is already difficult, so suffering from it the second and third time around is definitely something you would not want to look forward to. Unfortunately, studies have shown that those who develop gestational diabetes during their first pregnancy have a risk for developing this same condition in their subsequent pregnancies.

The study published by the American Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology online that the risk of developing gestational diabetes increases in each subsequent pregnancy, although there is no clear proof that it actually worsens with every occurrence. The risk increases by 13% every pregnancy, but if the pattern is broken, it only increases by 6%. For example, those who had gestational diabetes during their first pregnancy have a 13% chance of getting it the second time. If she had the same condition for the second time, the chance to get it again the third time increases to 26%. On the other hand, if the woman had gestational diabetes during her first pregnancy but not during her second pregnancy, her chance of suffering from the same condition during her third pregnancy decreases to 6%. All of these figures are in comparison with a woman who did not have gestational diabetes during her first pregnancy. Hence, having a healthy lifestyle is of adamant importance in order to prevent the development of gestational diabetes the first time.

Risk factors and risk reduction methods-gestational diabetes subsequent pregnancy

The biggest risk factor for the development of gestational diabetes and type 2 diabetes mellitus has something to do with lifestyle factors. Those who love eating sweets and have sedentary lifestyles are the ones most at risk of getting gestational diabetes during pregnancy. Those who are overweight or obese also have increased chances of developing gestational diabetes. Hence, risk reduction strategies are focused on proper counseling on lifestyle modifications, such as promoting a healthy diet, incorporating exercise in one’s daily routine, and reducing and maintaining weight.

Aside from counseling, early identification of gestational diabetes is also important so as to immediately control blood sugar levels and prevent its adverse effects on both the mother and the baby. Pregnant women should have a schedule for prenatal care so that their doctors can monitor their blood sugar levels and provide appropriate solutions to their healthcare problems.

Also, women who developed gestational diabetes during their first pregnancy should request for screening for type 2 diabetes mellitus after six weeks postpartum. Their healthcare provider can help them modify their risk of developing gestational diabetes subsequent pregnancy and type 2 diabetes mellitus later on in life.

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My One Hour Glucose Tolerance Test Reading Was High

My One Hour Glucose Tolerance Test was High

Do I Have Gestational Diabetes?

Once you are suspected to have gestational diabetes, you will be subjected to an oral glucose tolerance test to determine whether or not you really have gestational diabetes. For most women who are going to undergo this test, this can be nerve-racking as they do not know what to expect. Hence, it is very important to educate yourself regarding the glucose tolerance test so that you know the preparation, the procedure, and the normal values for the test results. This will also prevent you from subjecting yourself to undue stress that might adversely affect your baby.

What is the one hour glucose tolerance test?

The oral glucose tolerance test, also known as the one-hour glucose challenge test, is administered between weeks 24 and 28 of your pregnancy. This test will initially determine whether or not you are at risk for developing gestational diabetes. The results of this test are not conclusive, for a high value is still subject to a confirmatory test, the three-hour glucose tolerance test. A high value in this test means that you indeed have gestational diabetes.

How do I prepare for the one hour glucose tolerance test?

For the one-hour glucose tolerance test, there is no preparation required. You can take it right there and then since no fasting is needed. However, if you are going to undergo the three-hour glucose tolerance test, you need to fast for 10 to 14 hours before the test. You should also refrain from drinking or eating anything during the three-hour duration of the test.

What happens in the one hour glucose tolerance test?

one hour glucose tolerance testIn the one-hour oral glucose tolerance test, you will be asked to drink a sugary beverage that contains 50 grams of glucose. After finishing the drink, your doctor will wait for one hour before testing your blood glucose levels. During this one hour, you cannot eat or drink anything. After one hour, your doctor will extract a blood sample from you and compare your values with that of the normal range. If your blood sugar level is less than 130 mg/dl, this means that you do not have gestational diabetes and you will not be subjected to any more tests. However, once the value exceeds 130 mg/dl, you might have gestational diabetes, but the doctor needs to make sure first. Hence, you will be subjected to the three-hour glucose tolerance test. This means that the results of the one-hour glucose tolerance test only determine the possibility of having gestational diabetes, but they do not establish the fact that you really have gestational diabetes.

Once you are subjected to the three-hour glucose tolerance test, your doctor will first draw a blood sample after your 14-hour fasting. Next, you will be asked to drink a sugary liquid containing 100 grams of glucose, then have your blood samples taken one, two, and three hours after finishing the drink. This means that your blood sample will be taken for a total of four times. The normal values for this test should be 95 mg/dl for your fasting blood sugar, 180 mg/dl after one hour, 155 mg/dl for two hours, and 140 mg/dl for three hours. Any two values exceeding this range confirm your condition of gestational diabetes.

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What Are The Healthiest Ways In Cooking For Gestational Diabetes – Grill, Fry, Microwave, Stovetop?

Cooking for Gestational Diabetes

In gestational diabetes, healthy eating does not only mean eating the right type of food. It also means cooking those foods in the right way. There are several cooking methods that cut great amounts of calories from foods that normally contain lots of fats. Good thing that there are several ways to cook healthy, and you are not limited to just one option. Grilling, stir frying, microwaving, and some stove top cooking methods can help you achieve your goal of eating healthy. Here are the reasons why these cooking methods are perfect for women with gestational diabetes:

Grilling –Cooking for gestational diabetes

cooking for gestational diabetesA lot of grilled foods are good for women with gestational diabetes basically because they are low in fat and high in nutrients. Moreover, grilling does not strip your food of flavor; in fact, this cooking method enhances flavor, making it not just a healthy way of cooking but also a delicious way of bringing out the flavor in your foods. You can marinate your food using olive oil and citrus juices to tenderize the meat and vegetables that you are grilling.

Just remember that if you are grilling meat, you have to remove the excess fats just like other cooking methods. Burnt fats produce heterocyclic amines (HCA) and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAH), which are said to be cancer-causing substances. You also need to remember not to overcook foods, since the charred bits can increase the production of HCA and PAH. In addition, you can add herbs like mint, basil, rosemary, oregano, thyme, and sage to reduce HCA formation and to add flavor to your grilled foods.

Stir-Frying-Cooking for gestational diabetes

Stir frying is also a healthy way of cooking for gestational diabetes because it allows you to subject your food to very high heat for a short time. Hence, in order to cook them thoroughly, your food must be cut into smaller pieces and you must continuously stir the food to keep them from being burnt. For woman with gestational diabetes, you can stir fry different vegetables such as broccoli, bell peppers, mushrooms, and eggplants. Since you need to cut them into small pieces when you stir fry them, it will help also help you to control what you eat. You can also use olive oil to make your food a lot healthier.

Microwaving-Cooking for gestational diabetes

Microwaving is just like steaming, since you are just subjecting the food to heat without using any oils or fats. You can microwave goods like vegetables, fish, and chicken in order to retain their nutrients. You can also cover the food while microwaving so as to retain the steam inside. Just make sure that you use microwave-safe cooking vessels, such as glass and baking dishes. Metal, Styrofoam, and some plastic containers are not safe to be used in the microwave.

Stove Top-Cooking for gestational diabetes

Different stove top methods are considered to be healthy ways of cooking for gestational diabetes. These methods include steaming, simmering, and boiling. Steaming leaves your vegetables tasting crunchy but still nutritious because it uses less amount of water compared to boiling and simmering. Boiling and simmering are common ways of cooking vegetables by submerging them in boiling water, with the latter only using less heat than the former. All of these stove top cooking methods can be used to cook nutritious foods for cooking for gestational diabetes.

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How Do I Make Sure My Baby Is Not Being Affected By Gestational Diabetes?

Affected by Gestational Diabetes?

Affected by Gestational DiabetesAs a future mom, it is common for you to worry about the health of your baby even if the little one is still in your womb. Thus, when your obstetrician broke the news to you about your gestational diabetes condition, you might have immediately thought about the effects that this condition may have on your baby. This concern is nothing but normal, and this is a question that is frequently asked by mothers about their condition. Are there adverse effects on my baby and if so, is there something that I can do about it?

Is My Baby Affected by Gestational Diabetes?

Because your baby is inside your body, there will certainly be risks posed on your baby while you have gestational diabetes. Although there is a barrier created by the placenta between the mother and the baby so that certain substances and bacteria affecting the mother will not affect the baby, this barrier does not protect the baby from the effects of gestational diabetes. Glucose can still cross the barrier, since the baby’s nutrition depends on the mother. In addition, the baby’s pancreas is not yet mature enough to produce enough insulin, so any excess of glucose can be pretty detrimental to the baby.

If gestational diabetes remains uncontrolled, your baby may accumulate fats around the trunk and shoulders because of the excess glucose coming from the mother. Hence, vaginal delivery might become impossible, so you will either have to subject yourself to a caesarean section, or deliver the baby prematurely because he is already too big to be in your womb.

If you still try to deliver your baby vaginally, shoulder fracture might occur. Since your baby also go used to high amounts of glucose when he was still in the womb, the baby’s pancreas might continue to produce a lot of insulin even after birth, so that baby gets the risk of developing hypoglycemia or low blood sugar after birth. Studies also show that babies born of gestational diabetics have a higher risk of developing type 2 diabetes mellitus later in life.

How Can I Prevent My Condition from Affecting My Baby? Affected by Gestational Diabetes

The only way that you can prevent the aforementioned complications is to control your blood glucose levels throughout your pregnancy. Gestational diabetics need more prenatal checkups compared to other women who have normal pregnancies.

Your obstetrician might subject you to several tests to determine whether or not your baby is having problems related to your gestational diabetes. An ultrasound can show the growth and development of your baby, letting you know whether or not your baby is growing too fast because of high levels of blood sugar in your bloodstream.

A non-stress test can also be done to see if your baby’s heart rate is normal, hence letting the doctors assess the health of your baby. This test is usually done towards the end of pregnancy. Fetal monitoring will also be done during labor and delivery so as to determine the indications of distress caused by gestational diabetes.

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