Gestational diabetes is a type of diabetes that happens during pregnancy. Unlike type 1 diabetes, gestational diabetes is not caused by having too little insulin. Instead a hormone made by your placenta keeps your body from using the insulin as it should. This is called insulin resistance. Blood sugar (glucose) then builds up in your blood instead of being absorbed by the cells in your body.
The symptoms of gestational diabetes often go away after delivery. But sometimes they don't. Or you may have a greater risk of developing type 2 diabetes later.
Gestational diabetes doesn't cause any symptoms. That’s why it’s important to get tested for it if you are at high risk.
- If your blood sugar levels are very high, you may have these symptoms:
- You urinate more than normal
- You are hungrier or thirstier than normal.
- You have blurred vision
- You have nausea and vomiting
- You lose weight even though you are hungrier
Who is at risk for gestational diabetes?
Any woman can develop gestational diabetes during pregnancy. But you may be more likely to get it if you:
- Are overweight or obese
- Have a family history of diabetes
- Are older than 25
- Are African American, American Indian, Asian American, Hispanic or Latino, or Pacific Islander
- Have pre-diabetes (impaired glucose tolerance)
- Have high blood pressure
Questions that we can answer for you
- What is gestational diabetes?
- What causes gestational diabetes?
- How will gestational diabetes impact me and my baby?
- How is gestational diabetes treated?
- Should I exercise with gestational diabetes?
- How do I check my blood glucose level?
- How will gestational diabetes affect me post-pregnancy?
What should I expect?
Your initial visit will include:
- Nutrition screening and assessment
- Planning of daily intake and meal frequency
- Development of a meal plan
- Tips on food label reading
- Blood glucose meter training
Your follow-up visit will include:
- Review of your blood glucose readings
- Modification of meal plan
- Post-pregnancy nutrition planning
- Breastfeeding nutrition planning
Skills you will learn:
- Healthy meal planning with a carbohydrate strategy
- Staying active during pregnancy with appropriate exercise
- Monitoring blood sugar at a frequency right for you
- Keeping mom and baby healthy post-pregnancy