It happened. You failed your one hour glucose test and have to go in for the dreaded three hour test. Then you fail that one. You are diagnosed with gestational diabetes. It’s something no woman wants to hear. You suddenly have images of not being able to eat anything with carbs or sugar ever again. Or you start worrying about how it is going to affect your baby. You get frustrated that this isn’t how you expected pregnancy to be. It’s hard to stop the panic. When, honestly, managing gestational diabetes can be very simple and easy.
Instead of getting upset or overthinking everything, realize that it is very common. Many women end up with it. Following these tips for managing gestational diabetes can help make it super easy and less worrisome!
Learn your triggers
Every woman’s triggers for high blood sugar are going to be different. Carbs and sugar are what you have to watch but different things may affect you differently. I have had gestational diabetes twice now. The first time I could eat as many carbs as I wanted but had to watch the sugar-y things very closely. The second time, ice cream and the like barely bothered my blood sugar at all but pasta and bread kicked it up like crazy. That first week or so that your doctor has you testing your sugar with a meter at home (most likely around four times a day), don’t change your diet. See what your triggers are. Make a note in your log about what you ate that made it go higher than your doctor would like. Eat less of these foods in the future, either in frequency or amount or both.
Switch to more natural foods
This is a good idea anyway, especially while pregnant. When managing gestational diabetes it is even more of a good idea. Something about less preservatives, dyes, and (you guessed it) added sugar can have a positive effect on your body. It’s amazing how much easier it is to control your blood sugar when you use whole grains and alternative (natural) sugars. Maple syrup or maple sugar is great as a sweetener without making your blood sugar shoot up. (And I’m not just saying that because we make maple syrup. 🙂 )Simple tricks for managing gestational #diabetes. #pregnancy Click To Tweet
Eat more produce and protein
I’m a carb-oholoic. I fully admit it. When I want a snack, I want something like cereal or toast. When I want something sweet, I lean towards cookies or cake. It’s really hard for me to replace those things since it’s what I really like. Instead of cutting these things out altogether, try to eat more of the things you should. Instead of a bowl of cereal, trying cheese and crackers. If you make a carb heavy meal or side dish (such as macaroni and cheese), have a salad first. This will help fill you up with foods that won’t mess up your blood sugar. There are many lists online with what fruits and vegetables are best when you have diabetes. I love that strawberries are on that list. 😉
Exercise…if you can
This is one that I have never been allowed to do. I’ve had pregnancies where exercise has not been allowed for me. However, if you are allowed to exercise, it can be helpful in managing gestational diabetes. Don’t over do this. Just some gentle walking can make a difference.
Managing gestational diabetes doesn’t have to be hard. It also doesn’t have to remove all fun and yummy foods. By following these four tips you can still have a healthy pregnancy.
(I am not a medical professional. These are just the tips that helped me and might help you as well. As always, follow the instructions that your doctor has given you.)