Hey Mama! Getting diagnosed with GDM for the first time sends a flood of emotions, and on top of that you have to learn a new diet. Here are some simple guides to ease the process for you.
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Table of Contents
- Just Diagnosed
- Understanding GDM
- Get Started To-Do List
- Free Log Printable
- Other Helpful Resources
Just Diagnosed with GDM
Oh, Homer. Who knew we’d relate to you so well?
Having to change your diet immediately for the safety of your baby is a HUGE pill to swallow, and actually doing it is no easy undertaking.
On top of that, it’s days, weeks and even months before you can get in with a dietitian! So what do you do in the meantime?
If you’re looking for a to-do list to follow for GMD, it’s included here at the end!
But I encourage you to follow the links for a better understanding, because understanding gives you the freedom and power to still eat what you like and not OVERHAUL your diet.
Understanding Gestational Diabetes Mellitus
GDM is a condition diagnosed in pregnancy. If you want to know more about GDM, or if you have unanswered questions, check out Everything You Need to Know about Gestational Diabetes.
It’s the most common asked questions about GDM and it has links to evidence-based research. It’s lengthy! But there’s a helpful table of contents that’ll send you directly to the section you want to read.
Come back here after you’ve taken a look!
If you have questions about testing methods, normal blood sugars, safe ranges, etc., Gestational Diabetes Test & Alternatives covers it all!
I encourage you to look at this because it explains the why and how. I wish I had this information at the time of my diagnosis because I would’ve requested another test.
Gestational Diabetes Diet
The diet is simple once you have a general understanding of which foods belong to which food groups. If you think you already know, still take a look because this diet is different.
For example, milk is considered a carb with GDM!
The Gestational Diabetes Diet page is key to understanding how to proceed. It’ll also reinforce what you learn at your dietitian appointment. Included in its content is What Not to Eat and 5 Tips to Get Started, but they’re linked here as well.
There’s so much stress from this diet, but a lot of it is relieved when you are confident about what your options are!
The Fast Food & Restaurant series is a deep dive into the menus of popular eateries. Each review lists the menu items appropriate for the diet, as well as the menu items to avoid.
A downloadable quick reference sheet of low carb items is included for each restaurant!
You can visit each post or create an account to access all downloads in one place!
What to Expect
As a first time GDM’er, you have a ton of questions, but the one commonly overlooked is “What should I expect?”
Outside of changing how you think about food and your relationship with food, there’s a big mental and emotional toll that takes place!
Gestational Diabetes is a lifestyle change.
If you think that you’ve been emotional so far, just wait!
That’s the truth! This diagnosis is going to pull so many emotions from you and there’s a chance you’ll have a breakdown or two in the next months.
We don’t want that to happen, of course, so take a look at What to Expect with Gestational Diabetes so you can better prepare for what you’ll encounter in the coming months.
Get Started GDM To-Do List
What you should do after getting diagnosed with gestational diabetes
- Start a food log!
Doesn’t need to be specific; just the foods and approximate amounts. Example: Breakfast – 2 eggs, 2 sausage links, bottle of water.
A downloadable log is provided below.
- Eat every 3-4 hours
The longer you go without eating, the crazier your blood sugar reacts. Eating frequently helps your glucose remain stable.
Eat small, protein-heavy snacks in between meals.
- Eat a sensible breakfast
Breakfast sets the tone for your glucose for the day. A sensible breakfast sets you up for success.
A sensible breakfast includes healthy and filling proteins and fats like eggs, meat, avocados, nuts, seeds, etc.
- Eat a bedtime snack
Remember from step 2 that your glucose acts crazier the longer you go without eating. Well, dinner to breakfast is a long fasting period that needs to be shortened. Eating a bedtime snack fixes this issue.
Super important because morning blood sugars are the most temperamental.
- Avoid heavily processed foods
Heavily processed foods have tons of added sugar and empty carbs that spike your blood sugar. Avoid items like baked goods, pasta, breads, cereal, etc. For more, visit What Not to Eat.
Other Helpful Resources
- Real Food for Gestational Diabetes
- Helpful book by GDM expert Lily Nichols.
- Best Foods for Pregnancy
- Real Food for Pregnancy
- Fantastic book plainly talking about pregnancy nutrition and why it matters!
- Fast Food Series
- Easy Ways to Avoid Toxins in Pregnancy (coming soon)
- Pregnancy Nutrition
- FREE AUDIBLE RESOURCES from experts
- 3-video series from Lily Nichols.
- A Registered Dietitian/Nutritionist and Certified Diabetes Educator with an extensive background in gestational diabetes.