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Pregnancy and Gestational Diabetes

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How Much Exercise Is Safe for Gestational Diabetes?

Regular exercise during pregnancy can improve your posture and decrease some common discomforts such as backaches and fatigue. Being fit during pregnancy means safe, mild to moderate exercise at least three times a week. But, regardless of gestational diabetes, every pregnant woman should consult with her health care provider before beginning an exercise program. He or she can give you personal exercise guidelines, based on your medical history.

Because both insulin and exercise lower blood sugar, you should follow these additional exercise guidelines to avoid a low blood glucose reaction:

  • Always carry some form of sugar with you when exercising, such as glucose tablets or hard candy.
  • Eat one serving of fruit or the equivalent of 15 grams of carbohydrate for most activities lasting 30 minutes. If you exercise right after a meal, eat this snack after exercise. If you exercise 2 hours or more after a meal, eat the snack before exercise.

Pregnancy Weight Gain

The recommended amount of weight gain during pregnancy depends on your pre-pregnancy weight, whether there is more than one fetus, and the trimester. Typically more weight gain is expected during the second and third trimester and recommended intakes of calories should increase at that time.

Gaining the right amount of weight during pregnancy by eating a healthy, balanced diet is a good sign that your baby is getting all the nutrients he or she needs and is growing at a healthy rate.

It is not necessary to "eat for two" during pregnancy. It's true that you need extra calories from nutrient-rich foods to help your baby grow, but you generally need to consume only 200 to 300 more calories per day than you did before you became pregnant to meet the needs of your growing baby.

Ask your health care provider how much weight you should gain during pregnancy. A woman of average weight before pregnancy can expect to gain 25 to 35 pounds during pregnancy. You may need to gain more or less weight, depending on your pre-pregnancy weight and what your doctor recommends.

In general, you should gain about 2-4 pounds during your first 3 months of pregnancy and 1 pound a week for the remainder of your pregnancy.

Where the weight goes
Baby8 pounds
Placenta2-3 pounds
Amniotic fluid2-3 pounds
Breast tissue2-3 pounds
Blood supply4 pounds
Fat stores for delivery and breastfeeding5-9 pounds
Uterus increase2-5 pounds
TOTAL25 to 35 pounds

WebMD Medical Reference

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If the level is below 70 or you are experiencing symptoms such as shaking, sweating or difficulty thinking, you will need to raise the number immediately. A quick solution is to eat a few pieces of hard candy or 1 tablespoon of sugar or honey. Recheck your numbers again in 15 minutes to see if the number has gone up. If not, repeat the steps above or call your doctor.

People who experience hypoglycemia several times in a week should call their health care provider. It's important to monitor your levels each day so you can make sure your numbers are within the range. If you are pregnant always consult with your health care provider.

Congratulations on taking steps to manage your health.

However, it's important to continue to track your numbers so that you can make lifestyle changes if needed. If you are pregnant always consult with your physician.

Your level is high if this reading was taken before eating. Aim for 70-130 before meals and less than 180 two hours after meals.

Even if your number is high, it's not too late for you to take control of your health and lower your blood sugar.

One of the first steps is to monitor your levels each day. If you are pregnant always consult with your physician.

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