Prevention – Before you get pregnant, you may be able to prevent gestational diabetes by losing weight if you’re overweight and getting regular physical activity, Don’t try to lose weight if you’re already pregnant. You’ll need to gain some weight—but not too quickly—for your baby to be healthy. Talk to your doctor about how much weight you should gain for a healthy pregnancy.
Can you get gestational diabetes from eating too much sugar?
What happens if I eat too much sugar when I’m pregnant? – Most sugary foods and drinks are made with sucrose, otherwise known as table sugar. This form of sugar releases energy quickly, causing blood glucose to spike, triggering a rapid release of insulin to absorb it.
- You’ve probably experienced the boost of a sugar rush, which is generally followed by a dramatic slump in energy.
- Rather than keeping you going throughout the day, eating too much sugar when you’re pregnant can leave you feeling even more tired 1,
- A low-sugar intake helps to keep your blood sugar more stable, along with your resulting energy levels 2 and is more likely to result in healthy pregnancy weight gain,
Eating too much sugar when you’re pregnant may increase your risk of gestational diabetes 3 and pre-eclampsia 4 and increases the risk of your baby becoming overweight later in life 2,
Can stress cause gestational diabetes?
1. Introduction – Gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM) is defined as carbohydrate intolerance resulting in hyperglycemia with first onset or detection during pregnancy, accounting for 86% of hyperglycemia during pregnancy, Compared to healthy pregnant women, pregnant women with GDM are more likely to develop maternal and infant complications and are more likely to develop type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, dyslipidemia, and metabolic disorders after delivery,
- The mental health problems of pregnant women, especially the mental state of GDM, a high-risk group, have attracted a great attention from scholars all over the world.
- Studies in this population show that apart from physiological factors, anxiety and depression are also important causes of gestational diabetes,
However, there is no unified conclusion regarding the correlation between anxiety and depression and GDM. On the one hand, the study found that anxiety and depression can lead to chronic hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal hyperactivity, resulting in increased release of cortisol and insulin resistance, increasing risk of developing GDM in pregnant women.
At the same time, the diagnosis of GDM may increase the risk of antenatal or postnatal depression through a reverse mechanism, This suggests that there may be a two-way relationship between gestational diabetes and anxiety and depression. However, on the other hand, some studies believe that anxiety and depression do not increase the incidence of GDM in pregnant women, and the diagnosis of GDM does not increase the risk of prenatal or postnatal depression,
There is currently no consensus on the relationship between anxiety and depression and GDM. We therefore conducted a systematic review of the relevant literature to further explore the bidirectional relationship between anxiety and depression and GDM.
Which fruits should avoid in gestational diabetes?
Dried fruit, fruit juice, and certain tropical fruits, like mangoes, tend to contain more sugar. It may be a good idea to limit portions or eat these foods less often. Some canned fruit has added sugar or is packaged in syrup.
How can I prevent gestational diabetes in my third trimester?
Approximately 135,000 pregnant women in the United States develop gestational diabetes every year. Gestational diabetes is an illness in which the pregnancy interferes with the mother’s insulin production or its efficient use. Those who are most at risk for developing gestational diabetes:
are Hispanic, African American, Native American, Asian American or Pacific Islander are overweight before pregnancy have a family member with diabetes are 25 or older had gestational diabetes in a previous pregnancy previously had a very large baby (9 pounds or more) or a stillbirth
Below are five steps you can take to help avoid developing gestational diabetes during your pregnancy.1. Maintain healthy body weight. Discuss with your doctor what a healthy weight is for you during your pregnancy. Post-delivery weight management tips:
Breastfeeding helps to get back to your normal pre-pregnancy weight. If you are overweight, just losing five to seven percent of your body weight can help reduce risk. If you weigh 180 pounds, losing just nine pounds can improve your health. Bonus: Shedding some pounds will also get you in better shape for the rigors of motherhood.
2. Get regular physical activity, if your condition allows it. This can help keep your glucose levels healthy. In one study, researchers found that women who were physically active before and during their pregnancy reduced their risk by about 70 percent. The women got about four hours of physical activity per week.
During pregnancy, walking and swimming are good choices. Others include bicycling, yoga and low-impact aerobics. Your doctor can tell you how much physical activity to aim for and how often. It depends upon your overall health.
3. Have your blood sugar tested early. Ask your doctor about your blood sugar level to see if it is on target. Have your blood sugar tested as early as three months before you get pregnant to see if it is in a normal range.4. Include fiber in each meal such as fruits, veggies, whole-grain breads, whole-grain crackers and cereals.5.
Should I be scared if I have gestational diabetes?
Gestational diabetes can be a scary thing, but it’s important to know that you, or your loved one, are not alone and that you can still have a completely healthy pregnancy.
Is gestational diabetes high-risk pregnancy?
Gestational Diabetes: Managing Risk During and After Pregnancy Contributor: Ellen Seely, MD, is Director of Clinical Research in the Division of Endocrinology, Diabetes, and Hypertension at Brigham and Women’s Hospital. Women who develop diabetes during pregnancy, known as gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM), may need high-risk pregnancy care due to complications that can arise during pregnancy and childbirth.
Do I need to worry about gestational diabetes?
What is gestational diabetes? Gestational diabetes is a condition in which there’s too much sugar in the blood. When you eat, your body breaks down sugar and starches from food into glucose to use for energy. Your pancreas makes a hormone called insulin that helps your body keep the right amount of glucose in your blood.
When you have diabetes, your body doesn’t make enough insulin or it can’t use insulin properly, so you end up with too much sugar in your blood. This can cause serious health problems, such as heart disease, kidney failure and blindness. Pregnant people are usually tested for gestational diabetes between 24 and 28 weeks of pregnancy.
Most of the time it can be controlled and treated during pregnancy. If it’s not treated, gestational diabetes can cause problems for you and your baby. It usually goes away after your baby’s born. Once you’ve had gestational diabetes, you have a higher risk of being diagnosed with diabetes later in life.
- Are older than 25.
- Are overweight or obese and not physically active,
- Have had gestational diabetes or a baby with macrosomia in a past pregnancy.
- Have high blood pressure or you’ve had heart disease.
- Have polycystic ovarian syndrome (also called polycystic ovary syndrome or PCOS). This is a hormone problem that can affect reproductive and overall health.
- Have prediabetes. This means your blood glucose levels are higher than normal but not high enough to be diagnosed with diabetes.
- Have a parent, brother or sister who has diabetes.
- Are a member of a racial or ethnic group that has a higher prevalence of diabetes that isn’t entirely explained by race or ethnicity, such as Black, American Indian or Alaska Native, Asian, Hispanic/Latino or Pacific Islander
Racism and risk of gestational diabetes Being a person of color is not a cause for having gestational diabetes. Researchers aren’t exactly sure why people in these groups are more likely to have gestational diabetes, but they have noticed some patterns in studies about gestational diabetes.
For example, many people of color experience chronic stress and lack access to fresh and healthy food. These factors are known as social determinants of health. They are the conditions in which you are born, grow, work, and live. In many cases, the social determinants of health are related to racism. Racism and unequal living conditions affect health and well-being and increases the risk of pregnancy complications, including gestational diabetes.
Racism refers to the false belief that certain groups of people are born with qualities that make them better than other groups of people. Racism isn’t limited to personal attacks such as ethnic slurs, bullying, or physical assault. In a racist culture, one group of people has more power than other groups.
- Have better education and job opportunities
- Live in safer environmental conditions
- Be shown in a positive light by media, such as television shows, movies, and news programs.
- Be treated with respect by law enforcement
- Have better access to health care
In contrast, people from racial or ethnic minority groups who live in a racist culture are more likely to:
- Experience chronic stress
- Live in an unsafe neighborhood
- Live in areas that have higher amounts of environmental toxins, such as air, water, and soil pollution
- Go to a low-performing school
- Have limited access to healthy foods
- Have little or no access to health insurance and quality medical care
- Have less access to well-paying jobs
March of Dimes recognizes that racism and its effects are factors in the health disparities in pregnancy outcomes and babies’ health. We must work together to bring fair, just and full access to health care for all moms and babies. Can gestational diabetes increase your risk for problems during pregnancy? Yes.
- Macrosomia, This means your baby weighs more than 8 pounds, 13 ounces (4,000 grams) at birth. Babies who weigh this much are more likely to be hurt during labor and birth, and can cause damage to his or her mother during delivery.
- Shoulder dystocia or other birth injuries (also called birth trauma). Complications for birthing parents caused by shoulder dystocia include postpartum hemorrhage (heavy bleeding). For babies, the most common injuries are fractures to the collarbone and arm and damage to the brachial plexus nerves. These nerves go from the spinal cord in the neck down the arm. They provide feeling and movement in the shoulder, arm and hand.
- High blood pressure and preeclampsia, High blood pressure (also called hypertension) is when the force of blood against the walls of the blood vessels is too high. It can stress your heart and cause problems during pregnancy. Preeclampsia is when a pregnant person has high blood pressure and signs that some of their organs, such as the kidneys and liver, may not be working properly.
- Perinatal depression, This is depression that happens during pregnancy or in the first year after having a baby (also called postpartum depression ). Depression is a medical condition that causes feelings of sadness and a loss of interest in things you like to do. It can affect how you think, feel, and act and can interfere with your daily life.
- Preterm birth, This is birth before 37 weeks of pregnancy. Most women who have gestational diabetes have a full-term pregnancy that lasts between 39 and 40 weeks. However, if there are complications, your health care provider may need to induce labor before your due date. This means your provider will give you medicine or break your water (amniotic sac) to make your labor begin.
- Stillbirth, This is the death of a baby after 20 weeks of pregnancy.
- Cesarean birth (also called c-section). This is surgery in which your baby is born through a cut that your doctor makes in your belly and uterus. You may need to have a c-section if you have complications during pregnancy, or if your baby is very large (also known as macrosomia). Most people who have gestational diabetes can have a vaginal birth. But they’re more likely to have a c-section than people who don’t have gestational diabetes.
Gestational diabetes also can cause health complications for your baby after birth, including:
- Breathing problems, including respiratory distress syndrome. This can happen when babies don’t have enough surfactant in their lungs. Surfactant is a protein that keeps the small air sacs in the lungs from collapsing.
- Jaundice. This is a medical condition in which the baby’s liver isn’t fully developed or isn’t working well. A jaundiced baby’s eyes and skin look yellow.
- Low blood sugar (also called hypoglycemia)
- Obesity later in life
- Diabetes later in life
How do you know if you have gestational diabetes? Your health care provider tests you for gestational diabetes with a prenatal test called a glucose tolerance test. If your provider thinks you’re at risk, you may get the test earlier. If the glucose screening test comes back positive, you’ll have another test called a glucose tolerance test.
After this test, your doctor will be able to tell whether you have gestational diabetes. How is gestational diabetes treated? If you have gestational diabetes, your prenatal care provider will want to see you more often at prenatal care checkups so they can monitor you and your baby closely to help prevent problems.
You’ll probably have tests to make sure you and your baby are doing well. These include a nonstress test and a biophysical profile. The nonstress test checks your baby’s heart rate. The biophysical profile is a nonstress test with an ultrasound, Your provider also may ask you to do kick counts (also called fetal movement counts).
- Every day, time how long it takes for your baby to move 10 times. If it takes longer than 2 hours, tell your provider.
- See how many movements you feel in 1 hour. Do this 3 times each week. If the number changes, tell your provider.
If you have gestational diabetes, your provider tells you how often to check your blood sugar, what your levels should be and how to manage them during pregnancy. Blood sugar is affected by pregnancy, what you eat and drink, and how much physical activity you get.
You may need to eat differently and be more active. You also may need to take insulin shots or other medicines. Treatment for gestational diabetes can help reduce your risk for pregnancy complications. Your provider begins treatment with monitoring your blood sugar levels, healthy eating, and physical activity.
If this doesn’t do enough to control your blood sugar, you may need medicine. Insulin is the most common medicine for gestational diabetes. It’s safe to take during pregnancy. Here’s what you can do to help manage gestational diabetes:
- Go to all your prenatal care checkups, even if you’re feeling fine.
- Follow your provider’s directions about how often to check your blood sugar. Your provider shows you how to check your blood sugar on your own. They tell you how often to check it and what to do if it’s too high. Keep a log that includes your blood sugar level every time you check it. Share it with your provider at each checkup. Most parents can check their blood sugar four times each day: once after fasting (first thing in the morning before you’ve eaten) and again after each meal.
- Eat healthy foods. Talk to your provider about the right kinds of foods to eat to help control your blood sugar.
- Do something active every day. Try to get 30 minutes of moderate-intensity activity at least 5 days each week. Talk to your provider about activities that are safe during pregnancy, like walking.
- If you take medicine for diabetes, take it exactly as your provider tells you to. If you take insulin, your provider teaches you how to give yourself insulin shots. Tell your provider about any medicine you take, even if it’s medicine for other health conditions. Some medicines can be harmful during pregnancy, so your provider may need to change them to ones that are safer for you and your baby. Don’t start or stop taking any medicine during pregnancy without talking to your provider first.
- Check your weight gain during pregnancy. Gaining too much weight or gaining weight too fast can make it harder to manage your blood sugar. Talk to your provider about the right amount of weight to gain during pregnancy,
If you have gestational diabetes, how can you help prevent getting diabetes later in life? For most people, gestational diabetes goes away after giving birth. But having it makes you more likely to develop type 2 diabetes later in life. Type 2 diabetes is the most common kind of diabetes. Here’s what you can do to help reduce your risk of developing type 2 diabetes after pregnancy:
- Get tested for diabetes 4 to 12 weeks after your baby is born. If the test is normal, get tested again every 1 to 3 years.
- Get to and stay at a healthy weight.
- Talk to your provider about medicine that may help prevent type 2 diabetes.
Last reviewed: March 2022
Can I get rid of gestational diabetes while pregnant?
Can you get rid of gestational diabetes while pregnant? – No, you can’t get rid of gestational diabetes once you have it. After you’re diagnosed with the condition, you’re not tested again for diabetes until after your baby is born. It’s recommended to get tested for diabetes within 12 weeks after your baby is born.
It’s not entirely preventable, but you can take steps to reduce your risk. Eating a balanced diet and getting regular exercise before and during your pregnancy is the best way to reduce your risk of developing gestational diabetes. Yes, you can still have a healthy pregnancy and a healthy baby if you have gestational diabetes.
Gestational diabetes is a highly treatable and manageable condition. Work with your healthcare provider to make sure you understand your treatment plan and how you can keep your blood sugar levels at a healthy level.
Can eating healthy prevent gestational diabetes?
When can changing your diet prevent gestational diabetes? – Women are generally advised to eat a balanced diet during pregnancy. This means making sure you have a varied diet rather than eating a lot of the same type of food, so the baby gets all the nutrients he or she needs. Most women can simply trust their appetite and don’t need to follow a special diet. According to the research done so far, the only women who benefit from dietary changes are those who are overweight or obese. They can lower their risk of gestational diabetes by changing their diet with the help of a professional dietitian or nutritionist. The dietary changes can reduce their blood sugar levels and help them put on less weight in pregnancy. In women who have a normal weight, dietary changes don’t have a preventive effect. Research has shown the following for women who are overweight (BMI > 25) or obese (BMI > 30):
If they didn’t change their diet, 16 out of 100 women were diagnosed with gestational diabetes. If they did change their diet, 6 out of 100 women were diagnosed with gestational diabetes.
But the studies didn’t provide any information about whether the change in diet also influenced the child’s birth weight, reduced the risk of complications during the birth, or helped to avoid the need for Cesarean sections.
Can diet cure gestational diabetes?
7. Manage your weight – If you gain too much weight in pregnancy it can affect your health and increase your blood pressure. However, evidence suggests that pregnancy isn’t the time to be on a really strict diet and you shouldn’t aim to lose weight. But it’s important that your weight is monitored by your care team and you don’t gain too much weight, which could cause problems for you and your baby.
- Making changes to your diet and physical activity levels can help you avoid gaining too much weight.
- It’ll also help you to keep your blood sugar within a safe range,
- Breastfeeding is one of the ways you can help reduce your risk of developing type 2 diabetes after giving birth.
- It’s important to keep going with your healthier lifestyle after you’ve had your baby and keep to a healthy weight.
This will reduce your risk of developing gestational diabetes in future pregnancies. And, it will also help to reduce your future risk of developing type 2 diabetes too.