How To Prevent Gestational Diabetes During Pregnancy

Submitted by Nic on January 17, 2012

Pregnancy brings with it numerous changes in a woman’s body and these changes have the ability to affect the normal functioning of various body processes. One such area is the body’s ability to metabolize sugar leading to a rise in the level of blood sugar. The term ‘blood sugar’ refers to the presence of natural glucose in the blood stream, extracted from the carbohydrates obtained from various foods. High blood sugar levels indicate a rise in the amount of glucose in the blood stream.


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While pregnant, a number of women are known to experience a rise in blood sugar levels, especially during the final trimester of pregnancy. This mainly happens because the hormonal changes that occur during pregnancy tend to make expectant mothers glucose intolerant, to a certain extent. The pancreas finds it difficult to provide sufficient insulin to keep blood sugar levels in check.

It is essential to keep a check on blood sugar levels as an increase can directly influence the status of the pregnancy as well as the health of the unborn baby. Babies born to women with gestational diabetes are known to be heavier at birth and larger than babies born to women without diabetes during pregnancy. This can pose a concern at the time of delivery and in most cases; a C-section may become inevitable, depending on the size of the baby. The babies born to these mothers also have a greater chance of having jaundice as well as low blood sugar due to high insulin levels. The children are also prone to obesity during their childhood or teenage days and cardiovascular disorders later in life.

A common question asked is how to prevent gestational diabetes during pregnancy? The best way to preventing gestational diabetes during pregnancy is to have a well balanced diet that has a suitable blend of carbohydrates, proteins, fats, vitamins, minerals and plenty of water. Foods that are rich in sugar content must be avoided as far as possible, especially in the case of women who already had diabetes before pregnancy or who have a family history of diabetes. Excessive weight gain further increases the risk of gestational diabetes. Hence, a regular exercise routine in the form of a brisk walk or swim is recommended to keep a check on blood sugar levels. The answer to, ‘How to avoid gestational diabetes during pregnancy?’ also includes regular medical follow-ups to control gestational diabetes during pregnancy.

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