Gestational diabetes is the form of diabetes that happens during pregnancy. This type of diabetes can be easily tackled by taking a healthy and balanced diet for a long period of time. The diet helps in slowing the growth of the diabetes and prevents it from turning more complicated during the whole term of pregnancy. This is obviously recommended that the patient or the pregnant lady should consult a doctor before starting any such diet to determine the best diet plan for her and then follow it as required.
In this article, I want to discuss the gestational diabetes recipes that you must follow and why they make a difference for your meal planning.
Gestational Diabetes and Food Habits:
For any balanced diet, you should eat food from a variety of sources, never stick to one particular kind of food as it may hamper your total nutrition intake. In case of gestational diabetes you need to consume a variety of food, mainly:
- A great deal of fruits and vegetables as they contain a healthy amount of fiber and vitamins
- A balanced amount of healthy fats and lean proteins but don’t take a lot of saturated fat and oils
- Don’t consume too much amount of food which contains a lot of sugar, such as fruit juices, pastries, soft drinks etc.
- Balanced amount of whole grain foods, such as cereal, bread, rice etc. Remember whole grains have extra fiber so you are able to absorb them more slowly
- Take a reasonable amount of starchy vegetables like peas and corn. Try to cook them without extra butter or margarine.
- Try to avoid butter most of the time, and substitute it with vegetable or olive oil. This can be a great substitute for your need of butter and would not hamper the taste of the food that much
- Substitute your white rice with brown rice as this helps you keep the blood sugar at a balanced level by absorbing the food more slowly
- Include non fat yogurt in your gestational diabetes recipes if you can to get extra protein
- Don’t eat a great deal of regular potatoes. Try to take sweet potatoes instead as sweet potatoes have a great amount of fiber and nutrients (like beta carotene) and releases the glucose in a balanced manner in the blood and helps you manage the blood sugar level with more control for the most part unless you add a lot of sugar to it when eating.
- Try to eat whole wheat and natural grains bread instead of white bread.
Some Basic Do’s and Don’ts:
- Do take smaller amounts of foods every two to three hours. this will help you in maintaining the appetite and keep you fresh and energetic
- Drink water and drink a lot of it. It is advisable that you take about 64 ounces of water each and every day
- Eat foods like beans, kidney beans, tofu and other excellent sources of vegetable protein as high amount of protein should help you with blood sugar control in a gestational diabetes recipe
- Always eat a lot of vegetables. Include multi colored and green vegetables in your gestational diabetes recipes. Spinach, carrot, cauliflower, okra and other such vegetables are ideal for you as they do not raise your blood sugar very much.
- Eating fruits is also helpful. As fruits are natural sources of fiber and vitamins, but remember to limit them for breakfast so that you don’t have to deal with high blood sugar all day
- Consume nuts such as peanuts, walnuts, almonds etc. But make sure that you don’t take them in a large quantity but more like 10-12 at a time during a snack
- Avoid any kind of sweets and sugar in your diet. Don’t eat sweets, donuts, candy bars or other cookies in your day
- Don’t take too much food in your breakfast and other meals like dinner, instead work to divide them up into smaller amounts
- Noodles and white rice should be used in moderation in your gestational diabetes recipes
- Try to avoid saturated fats, butter and cream to reduce your saturated fat intake
- Avoid caffeine as much as possible. Avoid soda and tea as well as coffee since they all can contain caffeine
- Limit your intake of processed food and be careful that you try to cook more from scratch instead of using boxed and processed foods to have more control over your meals
Some useful Gestational Diabetes Recipes:
If you are ready to take on a food plan based primarily on vegetables, then these items are ideal for you. Eat 3 to 5 servings a day. Each serving should be made of:
- One cup of green and leafy vegetables
- Cooked and chopped raw vegetables of the same quantity
- Vegetable juice
- Chopped raw leafy vegetables
- Frozen or fresh vegetables without oil, salt or fats
The breakfast meal for gestational diabetes recipes should be eaten every morning, so try not to skip. Don’t be remiss in consuming breakfast and get up and make your breakfast each day. The recipe for the perfect breakfast to help you have a great day with gestational diabetes includes:
- Half cup of water cooked oats
- A full and big glass of water
- 5-6 raw almond pieces
- A little sweetener – your choice – to add to the oatmeal
- A quarter cup of non fat fresh milk
For lunch, the meals are a little bit on the heavier side. The basic lunch recipe should include:
- A cup full of cracked wheat or steamed brown rice
- A cup of soup without too much pepper or salt in it but make sure you have some meat like chicken or beef
- Some stirred or steam cooked vegetables
- A lot of water
- You can also add an apple in the lunch if you feel that the food is not fulfilling you.
Fruits are an essential part of the daily diet of gestational diabetes patients. They should take fruits in a reasonable and fulfilling quantity.
- A whole fruit, preferably a banana or an apple
- Try to take whole fruits as they contain more fiber
- Half cup of chopped canned fruit
Protein should always be in your daily diet in a controlled amount. The basic protein amounts are:
- 1 egg, preferably half boiled
- Some peanut butter (2 Tablespoons)
- Cooked beans to provide you with vegetable protein (1/2 cup)
- A cup of cooked or baked meat or fish (3-4 ounces)
- Lean pieces of beef or pork
Dinner should also be light enough and should not contain a great deal of heavy ingredients. The ideal dinner includes:
- A cup of steam cooked vegetables
- A cup full of steamed brown rice (or noodles or potatoes)
- Meat / protein in about 4 ounces
- A glass of water
Remember you can follow these gestational diabetes meal plans and recipes to ensure a healthier outcome in pregnancy. This will help you manage the effects of gestational diabetes and have a better and easier pregnancy. Be strict and self controlled and you will have no worries regarding the increasing blood sugar level in your body. You can manage with lots of vegetables and fruit, a reasonable amount of carbohydrate (like rice or noodles), and meat or protein sources.
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