During pregnancy, your blood sugar levels can dramatically increase. Your insulin levels often find it difficult to control this spike in blood sugar levels, which can lead to Gestational Diabetes. This issue currently affects as many as 18 in 100 women in England and Wales. Furthermore, it can put you at a higher risk of contracting type 2 diabetes in later life. Whilst this disorder may sound daunting, it can, in fact, be controlled by curating a healthy diet. However, it is crucial to develop this healthier diet as early as possible.
If you develop gestational diabetes during pregnancy, your baby is more likely to be ‘big for its gestational age’. This is due to the fact that excess glucose (sugar) crosses the placenta. The sooner the condition is detected and controlled, the less likely it will affect your pregnancy and the health of your baby.
The best protection against gestational diabetes is to follow the advice for blood sugar balance. There is overwhelming evidence to suggest that the Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) diet significantly reduces the chances of gestational diabetes, and improves the chance of having a healthy pregnancy and baby. This diet is rich in vegetables, fruits, whole grains, and polyunsaturated fats. Plus it’s low in saturated fats, refined grains, sugar and salt.
Supplement with vitamin D
Vitamin D is used for insulin protection. Supplementation has been shown to increase the chances of a healthy pregnancy and baby in women with gestational diabetes. Vitamin D can be found in fatty fish, like tuna, mackerel and salmon. It is also high in proteins such as eggs. A breakfast consisting of poached eggs and smoked salmon can be extremely beneficial. It will not only be an indulgent, tasty morning treat but it will be packed with nutrients such as Vitamin D as well. Or, if you are vegetarian, why not pop to a bakery such as Bakesmiths in Bristol? Here, you can purchase one of their homemade in-house sourdough loaves, and team it with roasted tomatoes and eggs.
Increase your micronutrients intake
Vitamins B, C, D and K and minerals zinc, chromium and magnesium all play a vital role in glucose management. Be sure to include foods from the micronutrients table since they are excellent sources of these vitamins and minerals.
This amazing spice can control blood glucose levels in the same way metformin can (medication is given to control blood sugar). You can take cinnamon as a supplement or add it to your food daily. Why not try this cinnamon, turmeric and ginger tea, and get a whole host of other health benefits at the same time? Or, try a cinnamon and turmeric latte. This warming and nutritious drink is a great alternative to caffeine – one that is bursting with nutritional benefits!