Gestational diabetes is a very common condition that occurs in pregnant women who don’t already have diabetes. It usually makes its appearance in the 6th or 7th month of pregnancy. The good news is that it disappears after pregnancy in most cases. There are a few factors that play a role in your predisposition towards gestational diabetes. If you’re overweight and 35 years or older, your risks are higher. Previously having a baby who weighed more than 9 pounds at birth is an indicator too.
If your family has a history of type 2 diabetes and you’re Asian, Hispanic, Native American or African American, your chances are higher too.
Gestational diabetes needs to be addressed because it can lead to urinary tract infections if your blood glucose levels are high. Other problems such as hypoglycemia (low blood glucose), macrosomia (glucose in your blood entering your baby and making him/her grow larger than average), preeclampsia (protein leaking into your urine), etc. can arise too.
These are slightly more disturbing conditions and the best way to keep them at bay is to keep the gestational diabetes in check. In this article, you’ll discover 5 ways to control this condition and prevent it from escalating.
1. Watch your diet
Just like any form of diabetes or disease, your diet is of paramount importance. If you have a nutritionist to guide you, he/she will be able to structure a meal plan that is conducive to your condition.
The goal here is to keep your blood sugar levels stable. You’ll need to consume your macronutrients in the right amounts and right combinations. While you may have lots of food cravings when you’re pregnant, you should know when to indulge and when to be disciplined.
2. Stay active
Pregnancy is not an excuse to lead a sedentary lifestyle. While you may wish to avoid high impact activities such as running or kickboxing, you can still get your daily exercise.
Walking is a wonderful exercise. If your back aches, you can try swimming which is easier on the body. Choose an activity that is suitable for you. It could be anything from spinning on the stationary bike to hiking or even tai chi. What matters is that you move and get some activity in your life.
3. Consult your doctor
It goes without saying that you should see a doctor and get professional medical help. In most cases, just watching your diet alone will work wonders to mitigate the problem.
However, if the problem escalates, your doctor may prescribe insulin or some medication to help you.
4. Monitor your blood glucose levels
What gets measured, gets managed. The best way to keep your diabetes in check is to monitor your blood glucose levels. Do a blood sugar test once a day to monitor your condition.
5. Check for ketones
Another way to monitor the problem is to check your urine for ketones. Detect this problem early and you can address it early. Your doctor will be the best person to advise you here.
Gestational diabetes is not something to panic about, but it must be monitored. So, give it the attention it needs and always err on the side of caution. Follow the tips above and watch your diet closely. If you can do that, it’s half the battle won.