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Approximately 4 percent of women are diagnosed with gestational diabetes during pregnancy. Here is how to handle it.
Know what gestational diabetes is. During pregnancy, the increase in hormone production requires more insulin to prevent blood sugar levels from rising too much. If the mother's pancreas can not produce enough insulin to keep her blood sugar normal, it becomes diabetic.
Follow the diet your doctor gives you. It is likely to consist mainly of fruits, vegetables, whole grains and legumes with a high fiber content; Simple sugars and carbohydrates will be limited. The goal of the diet is to maintain a normal level of blood sugar.
Three small well-spaced meals and three snacks will help keep your blood sugar level in a uniform keel.
Exercise according to the guidelines of your obstetrician. Experts say that walking and swimming daily are especially good training for pregnant women.
If diet and exercise do not lower your blood sugar levels, your doctor may inject insulin or take an oral medication.
Keep track of your condition by testing your blood sugar with a blood glucose meter several times a day: when you wake up in the morning; before every meal; and an hour or two after each meal. Call your doctor immediately if your blood sugar level is high.
Acceptable levels of blood sugar are 95 or less upon awakening; 140 or less one hour after meals; and 120 or less two hours after meals.
Return to your doctor between six and 12 weeks after giving birth to have your blood sugar checked again. For most women, their blood sugar levels return to normal after giving birth.
Keep your diet and exercise plan against diabetes so that it does not become part of the approximately 50 percent of women who develop type 2 diabetes within five years of having gestational diabetes.
Did you know?
Giving birth to a baby who weighs more than nine pounds increases your risk of developing gestational diabetes during your next pregnancy.
Video credits to Howcast YouTube channel