Pregnancy diabetes (gestational diabetes)

Gestational diabetes can be defined as a type of diabetes, which happens during pregnancy. If the mother has diabetes, her body is not capable to use the sugar (glucose) present in the bloodstream as well as it must, so the level of glucose in the blood increases higher than required.

Pregnancy diabetes affects between 1-3 per cent of all pregnant women. It generally develops in the 2nd trimester (in some cases as early as the 20th week of gestation). Most often, gestational diabetes will go off once the baby is born. Almost all women have some stage of impaired glucose intolerance in their pregnancies to a lesser or greater degree as a result of hormonal changes that happens during gestational period. That means that their blood glucose might be higher than required, but not big enough to label as diabetes. During the last period of pregnancy (the 3rd trimester), the hormone imbalance make pregnant woman at risks to develop gestational diabetes.

During gestational period, increasing levels of some hormones within the placenta (the organ connecting the fetus by the umbilical cord to the mother) help transferring nutrients from the mother to the growing infant. Other hormones will be produced by the placenta to help preventing the mother to develop low blood glucose. Such hormones do interfere in the action of insulin and help preventing this health condition.

Let us discuss some effective ways to stay healthy with pregnancy diabetes:

• The mother must know her blood glucose and keep it under control. With the help of various tests carrying out the levels of blood glucose, it becomes easier to keep it in a normal range. Women generally need to undergo blood test to carry out this.

• The mother must eat healthy diet. The health care professional makes a dietary plan that suits the mother. Generally restriction in carbohydrates is enough to have healthy diet for women suffering from pregnancy diabetes as carbohydrates affect blood glucose levels.

• Yoga and pranayama are said to be holistic exercises that help reducing/controlling the blood glucose and therefore, the mother susceptible for this disease may get benefited with such exercises. However, some yoga and pranayamas are contraindicated in pregnancy and therefore, one has to approach some yoga guru before starting and continuing the exercises.

• Keeping healthy weight is a way to keep away from gestational diabetes.

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