Is Healthy Eating Enough to Prevent Overweight Infants in Type 2 Diabetes?


In 2017 the Journal of Pregnancy reported on a study on children of mothers who managed to control their gestational diabetes treated only by diet. They discovered that dietary restraint effectively avoided having overweight babies at birth.

Researchers at the Royal Women’s Hospital in Melbourne, Australia, looked at all of the hospital’s birth records from the previous year. The risk of having large babies was lower in pregnant women with gestational diabetes who were treated with a diabetes diet than in pregnant women who were healthy. The researchers deduced from this data that gestational diabetes under diet control carried a low risk of giving birth to overweight children.

Diabetes that can only be detected during pregnancy is known as gestational diabetes. Infants who weigh more than the 90th or 95th percentile for gestational age run the risk of being overweight…

  • if the child is too large for vaginal birth a In some cases, a C-section is required because a child born vaginally could sustain a shoulder injury.
  • infants can be born with serious malformations of the nervous system. According to theory, the genes of the embryo are being affected by high sugar levels.
  • infants may be born with low blood sugar levels or have difficulty breathing.
  • miscarriages are also a risk.

During the five to ten years following delivery, mothers who have been diagnosed with gestational diabetes are at risk of developing type 2 diabetes.

Although diet and exercise can help prevent the development of any potential side effects of anti-diabetic medications, some mothers with gestational diabetes are treated with insulin or an oral anti-diabetic medication. Gestational diabetic women are advised…

  • to eat three meals and two to three snacks a day to keep blood sugar levels even.
  • fruit should be limited because of its high sugar level, and
  • fruit juices should be avoided altogether. Sugar-rich liquids quickly transport the sugar to the intestines, where it is then quickly absorbed. Fruit in its whole form contains fiber, which reduces the rate at which sugar is absorbed.
  • bread products should be made of whole grains.
  • eat a variety of fresh or frozen vegetables in different colors.
  • a little protein at each meal also helps to slow down sugar absorption.

A simple breakfast of whole wheat toast with a tablespoon of almond or peanut butter is delicious. For advice on a healthy diet and exercise program, consult a physician, midwife, or dietitian. Any personal, racial, or religious preferences can be accommodated in plans. Regular exercise will prevent you from gaining weight and get your body ready for giving birth.

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