Hormonal changes in the body during pregnancy can bring about gestational diabetes. There are a number of external factors – other than pregnancy hormones – that can contribute to gestational diabetes such as being older then 25, being overweight before the pregnancy, a family history of diabetes, a family history of large babies or a family history of stillborn babies. This article is going to take a look at some tips that can help to reduce blood sugar during pregnancy.
Eat a variety of foods
Varying your diet is a good start. Ensuring you eat an evenly distributed number of calories and carbohydrates throughout the day will help you to remain in control of your blood sugar levels. Make sure that everything you eat, whether it's snacks or meals, is balanced.
Drink plenty of fluids
In order to reduce blood sugar during pregnancy, you need to ensure that you're hydrated. Remaining hydrated is imperative to preventing pregnancy complications.
Don't skip meals
The amount of food you eat and when you eat needs to remain consistent. By doing so, your blood sugar levels can be more stable.
Be mindful of what you're eating
Try to resist the temptation of sugary snacks, drinks and foods. Chocolate, sweets, fizzy drinks, cake and other sugary foods can create a big increase in your blood sugar levels and worsen gestational diabetes.
If you do find yourself with a sweet tooth, try satisfying it with dark chocolate instead.
Drinks that are naturally high in simple sugars, such as fruit juices, flavoured teas and flavoured waters should be avoided where possible. Milk is also high in these simple sugars – in the form of lactose – and so it's worth being aware as to how much you are drinking. You may need to moderate your diet accordingly.
A better understanding of what is going on inside your body will go a long way to help reduce blood sugar during pregnancy. Check your sugar levels frequently with a blood glucose meter and this can help you to monitor and tweak your diet when necessary.
Eat a good breakfast
Irrelevant of whether you're trying to lower your blood sugar levels or to simply eat well, starting the day with a good breakfast is the best way to go. This may still mean that you need to slightly alter your diet by limiting the amount of carbohydrates you eat but boosting the amount of protein.
Speak to your doctor and dietician
In order to reduce blood sugar during pregnancy it's important to be more aware about the foods that you're eating. If you're unsure about what you can and cannot eat, then speak to your doctor or dietician. They will be able to help you work out a meal plan and an idea as to what you should be eating, as well as advice on how to monitor your sugar levels in the future.