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Gestational Diabetes Diet: A Healthy Gestational Diabetes Diet Plan For A Healthy Mom and Baby

Updated on October 5, 2011

How I almost got gestational diabetes

When I was pregnant I based my diet on dietetic recommendations that almost resulted in my getting gestational diabetes. I gained lots of weight - much more than is recommended in all pregnancy books, and even though I knew I weighted too much, I was constantly hungry and just could not stop eating. My body was obviously telling me that I was not getting enough nutrients. Even though I thought I was doing the right thing, a lot of advice that I was following was completely misguided and potentially harmful. I wish I knew then what I know now about gestational diabetes and how to prevent it with proper diet.

What Is Gestational Diabetes?

Gestational diabetes is a condition characterized by high blood sugar levels when woman is pregnant. It is said that this conditions is caused by the hormonal changes that occur during pregnancy. Increased levels of certain hormones produced by the placenta interfere with the ability of insulin to manage glucose, causing “insulin resistance”. If gestational diabetes is left untreated, it can cause problems for the woman and the baby. It can cause your baby to gain too much weight, increasing the risk of premature delivery.

In most cases, blood sugar levels go back to normal after childbirth. However, women who have head gestational diabetes have an increased risk of developing type 2 diabetes later in life.

Since that time, I got much more educated on the subject of nutrition, and have to say I finally feel like I found sound information that makes sense to me and makes it easy to stay healthy. I’ve overcome various health conditions thanks to my new way of eating, and I want to instill this type of diet in my son. I just wish I had this information sooner, that‘s why I’m writing these articles and promoting this type of eating to anyone who will listen.

Recommended Reading

Diet to Prevent Gestational Diabetes

Although in principle it’s all very simple, and we all heard that advice – to eat a healthy diet – few people actually understand what it means. There is so much conflicting information that no wonder people just feel that it doesn’t really matter what they eat – sort of a “when in doubt, just do nothing and hope for the best” strategy, that rarely produces positive results.

So, let’s cut to the chase, what is a healthy diet, and what should a pregnant woman be eating to prevent or reverse gestational diabetes.

Fresh, raw fruits, vegetables and lots of greens should constitute at least 70% or more of what we eat, meaning at least 70% of calories should come from natural, unprocessed plant sources. Raw is best, but light cooking or steaming is also acceptable. Make salad a main dish at lunch and dinner. Make yourself green smoothies – these are simply some sweet fruits blended together with greens, such as spinach, parsley, lettuce, kale, celery, etc. Green smoothies are really delicious and make consuming large amounts of fruits and greens really easy.

The rest should come from nuts, seeds, whole grains, and beans. Diary and meat products should not be consumed in excessive amounts (read Dr. Fuhrman books - he is a doctor who specializes in preventing and treating diseases - including diabetes - with dietary changes). All processed foods, especially white breads, pasta, sweets, sodas, etc. should be eliminated.

Okay, I know that this advice is very controversial, and can even make many people angry. I’m not writing this to stir controversy, and you don’t have to follow it if you don’t agree with what I say. Also, you don’t have to follow this advice 100% to feel incredible health benefits. However, this is not something that I invented on my own – this is the advice of many doctors and health professionals, and I just wish I came across it sooner. I just recommend that read the books in the recommended reading section first. These are not books specifically about pregnancy and gestational diabetes, but about healthy diet that prevents all kinds of diseases, including diabetes.

Whether you are pregnant and wish to avoid gestational diabetes, deliver a healthy baby, or whether you have other health concerns that you wish to overcome, this type of nutrition will provide your body with all the nutrients it needs to function and stay healthy. What’s more, our bodies have amazing ability to heal themselves, so any chronic health problems can be usually prevented and reversed with proper diet and lifestyle.

How much protein do we really need?

You may be wondering "Don't pregnant women need more protein? More fats? More other nutrients?" With the new baby growing in her womb, sure a pregnant woman needs more protein, but she also needs more of everything, especially calories. When she eats more foods, you get the extra portein, extra fat, extra carbs, and all other extra nutrient that she and her baby need.

If you eat a healthy diet - lots of fruits, vegetables, raw nuts, whole grains, beans, etc. - you will consume more protein and everything else in the process.

The bottom line is this: when your caloric needs are met, your protein needs are met automatically. So we should all focus on eating healthy natural foods, and forget about trying to get enough protein.

If you are concerned about protein and are looking to increase protein in your plant foods, consider that spinach is highest, ant 42 percent protein, and use it liberally in your salads and green smoothies. Try to make your smoothies as low in fruit as possible for your own taste, and try some blended salad recipes from my green smoothies blog.


Disclaimer: I’m not a doctor, and this article is for informational purposes only. I don’t provide medical advice here, and by all means consult your physician when making any drastic changes to your nutrition or lifestyle. However, I’m basing my knowledge on advice from medical doctors, such as Dr. Joel Fuhrman, and researchers, such as Collin Campbel (the author of “The China Study”). The problem, is that most doctors are not really interested or knowledgeable in the subject of nutrition, and don’t educate their patients how proper nutrition can prevent disease. They are mostly trained how to treat symptoms. Read books in the Recommended reading section for more information.


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    • crystolite profile image

      Emma 6 years ago from Houston TX

      Sounds interesting,educating and informative.I really enjoyed and gained a lot from this article.At least I've known the meaning of gestational diabetes and also the recommended the diets for pregnant women who really want to have a healthy baby.Thanks a lot for this great tutor.