Thursday, August 16, 2012

Pregnancy: Gestational Diabetes

Good morning! 

So here's what I learned from the dietitian I met with yesterday. "Getting gestational diabetes was not your fault. It was nothing that you did or didn't do. It will most likely go away once your baby is born. Here's the low down:
When you eat, your digestive system breaks most of your food down into a type of sugar called glucose. The glucose enters your bloodstream and then, with the help of insulin (a hormone made by your pancreas), your cells use the glucose as fuel. However, if your body doesn't produce enough insulin – or your cells have a problem responding to the insulin – too much glucose remains in your blood instead of moving into the cells and getting converted to energy.
When you're pregnant, hormonal changes can make your cells less responsive to insulin. For most moms-to-be, this isn't a problem: When the body needs additional insulin, the pancreas dutifully secretes more of it. But if your pancreas can't keep up with the increased insulin demand during pregnancy, your blood glucose levels rise too high, resulting in gestational diabetes.
I also learned that in order to get my glucose levels to lower I must start watching my carb levels. I learned that milk, yogurt, and fruit were carbs. She suggested that when I look at a food label I look at total carbs instead of sugars. Then she shared my doctor's recommendation for my diet. It goes a little something like this.
7:30am TEST (Meaning prick my finger with the monitoring system to see my blood sugar level after fasting (sleeping).)
Breakfast - 30 grams of carbs, + protein (no juice, fruit, milk)
8:30am TEST
9:30am Snack - 15 grams of carbs
11:30am-12pm Lunch - 30-45 grams of carbs
12:30-1pm TEST
3:00pm Snack - 30 grams of carbs
6-7pm Dinner - 30-45 grams of carbs
7-8 TEST
9:30 or later Snack - 30 grams of carbs + protein
Fifteen grams of carbs is like one slice of toast, one small piece of fruit, half cup of pasta, or a slice of thin crust pizza. Meats and vegetables do not count as carbs.  I must steer clear of white flour and white rice and Michael's chocolate chip cookies would probably send my number through the roof. Anywho, that's what I've learned. Now I've just got to be better at pricking my finger. This morning I couldn't get the thing to work and pricked 6 times for only two readings. 

Here's to soar fingers and a good day to you!



  1. Kristyn, We met last year at the Hale's house and I check in with your blog every once in awhile via Heather's blog. :) Just wanted to say that I sympathize with your carb-focused meal planning! My hubby is diabetic so I know all about sugar levels, insulin, carbs, etc. I am mostly commenting to give you a tip for finger pricking- my husband massages his finger tips, rubbing up toward the fingertip with his thumb to get the blood to the tip. That way he can get enough to test with a prick. Hope that helps! Sorry about the gestational diabetes. You can do it!

  2. This is actually so helpful!! I was diagnosed with gestational diabetes yesterday (I am 29 weeks along with my first) and I was also so encouraged to hear my midwife say, "It's not your fault." She also said that sometimes with babies that are measuring bigger, it takes more of a toll on your pancreas - not sure if yours is measuring big already? Anyway, good luck to you and your sweet baby!

  3. im so sorry kristyn.. you are so strong and so close to the end of your preg. i am praying for you sweety


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