Gestational diabetes is a condition that occurs when the body cannot process too much glucose, the major sugar compound.
Although it is more common in the early stages of pregnancy, it can arise at any time, including during baby’s birth. As the child grows, his or her body needs to process this sugar less frequently so it decreases from days of habitation.
To help ensure your baby does not suffer from this condition, you must meal plan for it. Most popular diets include food that is commonly found in most meals and only omitted when prepared in specific ways.
This includes weight-loss diets that include low-glycemic foods as well as types of food that require some preparation such as insulin preparations. Ideally, you would use your own custom meal plans but having one set up by an expert is also helpful.
Create menus based on carb amounts
For example, you can have a meat and veggie dish, a fruit and vegetable dish, or a fluffiness with few carbs. All of these foods have health benefits and are delicious!
Pinpointing carb amounts on menus is the best way to plan meals with gestational diabetes. It may help to create list of carbohydrates in your body- from small to large.
Most people with diabetes have lower levels of blood sugar so they need to pay more attention to how much food they eat. This may help you determine if you need to eat more or less than people without diabetes when eating can be more difficult.
Using the total amount of carbohydrates on the menu gives you enough space for different foods on your body to have their own blood glucose levels.
Mix and match recipes
Even with a well-controlled diet, it’s tempting to overindulge when you’re hungry. That’s why it’s important to limit yourself and mix and match your recipes to include more “good” foods.
You can save some of your favorite dishes in the recipe database so that you have another go-to food source. There are also community cooking events where you can look up nearby people to host a meal together.
These resources are great ways to plan an overall food experience that includes both healthy and non-healthy foods. Plus, each person on your party must contribute their own dish so that there is a little competition!
Speaking of competition, having two people with diabetes in the kitchen means there will be some competition.
Consider protein sources
If your diabetes is limited to a check-type diabetes, you may be limited in the sources of protein you can have. Most people with diabetes who are type 2 or type 1 do not have a high insulin response to their diet.
Therefore, there are fewer sources of protein in your diet than people with type 1 or type 2 diabetes who have high levels of insulin. This can be an issue when planning a diet as there are less sources of protein.
Most people with diabetes eat more than the recommended amount of protein per day. An example of this is having yourself a half cup (80 grams) of peanut butter on top of your usual food list.
You should have at least this much protein every day to keep your blood sugar levels elevated and to help with weight management, says Grande Hall, MS, RDN, CDN, senior director for health sciences at the American Diabetes Association in Washington.
Some examples of sources of protein include: cultured butter or peanut butter on whole wheat bread; grilled chicken breast with pasta and sauce; fresh fruit; and some soups and stewes.
Consider vegetable sources
Although we recommend a mostly meat and fat diet for best health, there are some foods that may be of importance for people with diabetes. For example, vegetables may help keep your blood glucose levels in check.
Because people with diabetes are more aware of their blood glucose levels, it’s important to eat enough vegetables to meet your needs. People with type 1 diabetes can especially benefit from the nutrients in greens such as Spinach, Kale, and Swiss Chard.
Additionally, people with type 2 diabetes should pay attention to how much fat they eat. People with type 2 diabetes may have trouble regulating their insulin, which can result in high blood sugar and insulin levels.
Hzos-Bhianny says: Consuming enough vegetables is one of the best ways to help control blood sugar levels. The nutrients in greens such as Spinach, Kale, and Swiss Chard can also be helpful when planning meals with people who have type 2 diabetes or person who suffers from low insulin activity.
Consider fruit sources
While vegetables are a must, most people with diabetes are advised to limit their fruit intake. Consuming too much fruit can increase blood sugar levels, making it more difficult to manage your diabetes.
Because diabetes is a condition that affects the entire body, not just the hands and feet, guidelines for fruit intake are different for everyone. For example, one cup of chopped purple grapes has about half of the total carbohydrates in an orange than in an apple!
Given that most people with diabetes don’t have high blood pressure, it’s not really necessary to eat enough fat. A small amount of fat is good for you- so much less than we used to think.
But since fat can make it more difficult to manage blood glucose levels, we want to keep eating it. Here’s how:
Consider meal planning based on how many pieces of fruit you plan to eat per day. For example, if you plan to grow at least one piece of fruit every day during your pregnancy, then a good meal planning might suggest giving yourself two or three hours to cut and wrap fresh fruits before you eat them.
Check grocery ads for on sale foods
If you have a well-functioning diabetes test kit, you can look up sale foods in the kit. Diabetics should always be aware of their food sources, so being aware of what brands of foods you need and how much of them you’ll eat is important.
Many grocery stores now have online ads and shopping lists made by the local grocery store. You can use this to help plan your meal plan with the added help of the local store supplies.
Mostly known for their high-sugar products and processed foods, these may not be your best choices if you have a hard time controlling your appetite.
Get creative with flavor combos
Gestational diabetes is a condition where the body cannot process glucose, or sugar, properly. As a result, some of it goes to waste.
This includes the processing of insulin, which helps regulate blood sugar levels. Without enough insulin, symptoms such as weight gain and/or elevated blood glucose levels can occur.
As a result, meal planning for someone with gestational diabetes is key. Luckily, this does not need to be complicated!
There are many ways to plan a meal for people with gestational diabetes, and some of the most popular ways are: pancake recipes, chicken wing recipes, and pasta dishes. All of these taste great!
Try some of these out the next time you are at home cooking! All of them are low in carbohydrates and/or dairy products, so they do not need to be used as daily foods. They can be added in around lunchtime or during dinner time if needed.
Keep fats low
As mentioned earlier, fat is important for your baby. As a gestational diabetes patient, it can be hard to know what amount of fat is enough. Many foods have high amounts of fat, and can be easy to over consume.
Because of this, it is important to keep your total fat low. Most people who have gestational diabetes should only eat a good quality peanut butter and jelly sandwich every other day. Between that and the vegetables you would include in your other meals, you are safe!
How much fat you eat depends on your overall health. A good way to know if you are eating enough fat is by how many pieces of bread you are eating. Peanut butter and Jelly sandwiches can sometimes be too much butter and creaminess for some people with type 1 diabetes.