You may already know… or maybe have been wondering why I’ve been trying new recipes with soy milk or using agave sweetener and looking at nutritional information at restaurants but a few weeks ago I was diagnosed with gestational diabetes, a relatively common condition where I am either not able to produce enough insulin or have developed a bit of insulin resistance.
First I did a 1 hour glucose tolerance test where I had to drink an extremely sweet orange flavored 50gm glucose drink and test my glucose 1 hour after. Since it came back higher than normal, I had to do a 3 hour glucose tolerance test where you fast for at least 8 to 10 hours then go to the lab to have your blood drawn before eating anything, drink another extremely sweet orange flavored 100gm glucose drink and have your blood tested at 1 hour, 2 hours, and 3 hours. Three out of four of my numbers were high so I was diagnosed with gestational diabetes (usually two out of four being high is enough).
So I went for diabetes and nutritional education and have been testing my blood sugars four times a day. Right before breakfast, 1 hour after breakfast, 1 hour after lunch, and 1 hour after dinner. I’ve been following a low carbohydrate diet consisting or small meals and snacks throughout the day. The first week was really tough as I just didn’t know what to eat and it was just hard to be eating so frequently.
The recommended carbohydrate diet is as follows:
(1 serving of carbohydrates = 15 grams)
8am Breakfast = 2 servings
10am Snack = 1 serving
12:30pm Lunch = 3 servings
3:30pm Snack = 1 to 2 servings
6pm Dinner = 3 servings
9:30pm Snack = 1 to 2 servings
Of course mixed into all of this includes proteins, vegetables, fruits, and fats.
And to give you an idea on how much 15 grams of carbohydrates are:
1 slice whole wheat bread
1 8oz cup of milk
1 small apple
1/3 cup cooked white rice
2 small tangerines
I’ve never been a rice lover (my family will back that up) but since I haven’t really been able to eat any, I feel like I’m craving it. I know that I can’t tolerate white rice well but brown rice has been working out a bit better for me. I’ve been learning a lot about “low glycemic index” carbohydrates as these tend not to make your glucose levels spike as high or as fast.
So far everything has been going well. I lost a few pounds the first week because I as having trouble finding the type of foods I wanted to eat but have finally had time to shop and found myself some things I enjoy eating. Dinner is still the hardest meal of the day because I want noodles or rice but the portions I’m allowed are so small that it’s not satisfying.
My best find for a snack is FAGE Greek yogurt which per 8 oz (1/2 cup) has 7g carbohydrates with 15g protein. Protein is more filling and with the low carbohydrate content, I can still add my slightly sweetened granola for my mid-morning snack.
I am monitored by a diabetes nurse weekly by telephone and since my numbers have been good and within range, I am now allowed to decrease the number of glucose checks. Now I have to perform daily morning before breakfast checks but only three times a week do I have to do the whole sha-bang (checks 4X/day). Yay for me! Per my nurse practitioner, baby seems to be growing normally and been kicking vigorously (15-20 mins to kick 10 times) so I hope I’m on my way to having a healthy baby.
Since I still like my baked goods, I’ll be experimenting more in the next few weeks, so keep an eye out for some trial (and error) recipes!