Ways That Doctors Treat Gestational Diabetes

The first step begins with dietary changes

A pregnant woman who is diagnosed as having gestational diabetes is almost always told to monitor her diet. She will probably need to eat differently than she has been eating. Doctors often tell their pregnant patients to eat more small meals throughout the day with a limited number of carbohydrates at each mini meal. The physician may refer the patient to a dietician or nutritionist.

Meeting with a dietician or nutritionist

Diabetes diet plans can be very confusing, so women are usually told to meet with a nurse educator who is knowledgeable in diabetes or with a dietician or nutritionist who can help the woman plan healthy meals. A diabetic diet doesn't need to be boring or the same every day. It simply requires eating foods that will not cause blood sugar levels to elevate, and a professional is the best one to offer advice on which foods to eat.

Diet during pregnancy is especially important for the diabetic woman

All pregnant women need to eat a healthy diet for the proper development of their baby. Women who develop diabetes during pregnancy need to be aware of proper nutrition as well as keeping their blood sugar levels down at the same time. Most women are told to count carbohydrates and to eat only a certain number of carbs at each meal. They often need to eat more protein, fruits, vegetables, and substitute whole wheat bread for white bread. Basically, a pregnant diabetic woman needs to eat the same type of diet as anyone with Type 2 diabetes, keeping in mind that extra protein may need to be added to the diet. It is important to closely follow the diet that is recommended.

Adding exercise and staying active usually helps control sugar levels

Most women are able to stay active during their pregnancy, and this also applies to women who develop diabetes during this period of their life. How does exercise lower blood sugar? When you exercise, your muscles use some of your body's glucose for energy. This lowers your blood sugar level. A study by the University of Michigan found that excercise is capable of lowering blood glucose and can be as effective at doing this as a common diabetes medication.

Doctors use other measures when diet and exercise don't work to improve blood glucose levels

Blood glucose levels that stay high and do not respond to a low carb diet and exercise can be very dangerous to both mother and baby. Doctors usually prescribe insulin injections for pregnant women. Sometimes diabetic medication is prescribed to lower glucose levels. Fortunately, most women's diabetes goes away after their baby is born.

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