Gestational diabetes is the most common co-occurring illness that occurs during pregnancy. It sometimes runs asymptomatically, but don’t let it fool you: this disease can lead to serious health problems for both the mother and the baby. Therefore, it is very important for women in the situation to monitor blood sugar levels so as not to harm either the child or themselves.
Pregnancy, of course, is not a disease, but it still has a huge impact on the hormones of the future mother. Judge for yourself: the normal blood sugar level of a woman who does not bear a child, provided that the analysis was taken on an empty stomach, is from 3.3 to 5.5 millimoles per liter of blood, and 2 hours after meals, this figure rises to 7, 8 mmol / l. If we talk about pregnant women, then for them a few other indicators are already the norm. So, on an empty stomach the level of glucose will vary from 4 to 5.2 mmol / l, and after eating it will reach 6.7 mmol / l. Such changes in blood sugar levels are due to hormonal changes in the female body.
Rates of sugar in pregnancy: what can affect the performance
A pregnant woman should constantly monitor her condition and be attentive to any changes in well-being that she has. For your own peace of mind, it makes sense to focus on the following figures – the average blood glucose levels for women in the position are 3.3 to 6.6 mmol / l. It must be remembered that while waiting for a baby, there is a risk of developing gestational diabetes, which in some cases can develop into type 2 diabetes immediately after childbirth. This phenomenon can be explained by the fact that during pregnancy the amount of amino acids in a woman’s blood decreases, and the level of ketone bodies, on the contrary, increases. The main mechanism of insulin secretion in women is as follows: during the normal course of pregnancy in the early stages, the level of production of this hormone of the pancreas usually remains the same or even decreases, and only in the second trimester does it begin to grow.
In the antenatal clinic for a period of 28 weeks, the expectant mother will be recommended to perform an hourly oral blood sugar test. The norm is the result when the obtained values do not exceed the value of 7.8 mmol / l. If, after taking 50 grams of glucose, the level of its content in the blood is above this mark, then in such situations it is necessary to carry out a three-hour test with 100 grams of the substance.
The results of the three-hour test, which show the presence of diabetes mellitus in a pregnant woman, will be approximately as follows:
- after 1 hour – glucose level is above 10.5 mmol / l;
- after 2 hours after administration, the glucose level is higher than 9.2 mmol / l;
- after 3 hours – glucose levels above 8 mmol / l.
Some women initially belong to the risk group for diabetes mellitus: this category includes those who have a hereditary predisposition to this disease, those who will become a mother for the first time at the age of 30+, pregnant women, whose previous attempts to endure a baby ended in miscarriages three times (or more), pregnant women who have a diagnosis of obesity, as well as those who have had gestational diabetes during previous pregnancies.
Sometimes, the future mother’s blood sugar level starts to change due to the manifestation of various diseases that had not previously been felt. In addition, excess blood glucose may be due to the fact that a pregnant woman is gaining weight too quickly.
In the case when a newborn baby weighs more than 4.5 kg with growth of 55-60 cm, we can say that his mother had elevated blood sugar levels during pregnancy.
Symptoms of high sugar in pregnant women
The doctor may draw attention to some pronounced signs that indicate an increased level of glucose in the blood of a pregnant woman. These symptoms are usually attributed to:
- constant feeling of hunger;
- dry mouth
- frequent urination;
- constant thirst;
- constant weakness;
- high blood pressure.
To make a correct diagnosis and exclude a disease such as latent diabetes, it will be necessary to pass blood and urine tests. If the data obtained is slightly higher than normal, then the doctor is unlikely to sound the alarm, since pregnancy also affects the metabolic rate: for example, after eating, the sugar from the blood of expectant mothers is absorbed by the cells more slowly than in women who do not expect a child.
How can I normalize glucose levels?
First of all, it is necessary to pay attention to what the expectant mother eats. All products must be useful and of high quality. It is important to completely eliminate fast carbohydrates from the diet and limit the consumption of fatty foods. The list of products that are not recommended for pregnant women include:
- whole and condensed milk;
- duck and goose meat;
- grilled meat;
- mashed potatoes;
- ice cream;
- sour cream;
- sweet fruit;
A woman in position should give preference to slow carbohydrates and low-fat protein foods. The list of allowed products is as follows:
- baked potato;
- durum wheat pasta;
- rabbit meat;
- young veal.
Do not forget about those products that have anti-diabetic effect. This category includes:
- soy milk;
- green leafy vegetables.
It is useful to include in your diet quince, gooseberry, currant, lingonberry, yogurt, low-fat cottage cheese, and lemons in reasonable quantities.
The difficulty of a pregnant woman’s diet is that, on the one hand, she should try to eat those foods that will keep her blood sugar levels within the norm, and on the other, do not forget that for normal growth and development The future baby needs microelements and vitamins.
Therefore, expectant mothers who are at risk of developing diabetes are recommended to purchase a personal portable glucose meter – a blood glucose meter. Thanks to this device, you can measure your blood sugar level yourself at any time. When measuring it is important to consider that the sugar level may slightly decrease in cases where the pregnant woman took a contrast shower, a bath with cool water, or gave herself a slight physical exertion.
If a woman in a position eats properly and qualitatively monitors the state of her health, then in that case she cares not only about her state of health, but also about the future baby. It is for this reason that it is extremely important to regularly measure glucose levels, take all tests in a timely manner and monitor your diet.