State of pregnancy imposes a special change in metabolism of the women, thus ensuring a continuous and steady supply of nutrients to the growing child even if the mother has irregular or deficient intake. It has a special significance for a diabetic woman.
The mother has to be provided with a balanced diet with extra allowance for the child.
Even if the mother is overweight at the time of pregnancy, no attempt should be made to reduce her weight to control diabetes. Only free sugar intake can be restricted and adequate calories should be provided with complex carbohydrates, like cereals, dal, milk and milk products. Her extra need for proteins should be met with milk or animal proteins. Soyabean and dal provides extra protein for the vegetarians.
Traditional special items during pregnancy like ghee, dry fruits and laddoos made from atta, ghee, edible gum and sugar are not recommended for a diabetic mother.
Since oral hypoglycemic drugs cannot be used in pregnancy, insulin is a must for, achieving normal blood sugar level if diet modification is not sufficient.
It should be emphasised that normal blood sugar levels are most essential alongwith the adequate diet to expect normal delivery. Only a meticulous control of diabetes can ensure successful pregnancy and delivery.
Needs of a Diabetic Woman During Pregnancy
Normal Calories – 1600 cal / day
extra calories – 300 / day to be evenly distributed
Normal needs – 14 gms/day Mainly from milk or animal proteins
40 mg / day
Egg, meat, green leafy vegetables, gram and cereals, fruits
1000 mg / day Milk, cheese, curd
800 mg / day
Milk and milk products, egg, green vegetables, fruits -400 mg / day during lactation
400IU / Day
Milk, butter, liver, egg yolk, fish.
Diet During a Sick Day
Diabetics are equally prone, may be a little more than normal person, to have ailments like fever, diarrhoea, sore throat or stomach upset. The common belief is not to have the same diet when ill or when it is not acceptable to the individual due to fever, nausea or pain in abdomen. Since they are unable to eat, they tend to miss the anti-diabetic tablets or insulin injections. In fact, any illness is an added stress to the body and can throw blood sugar level out of balance. Here are some guidelines
Take your normal level of carbohydrates. If you can’t eat, sip fruit juices, soft drinks with sugar, or soup. Eat gelatin or ice-cream.
Adjust your insulin as outlined in your sick-day plan. You need insulin even if you can’t eat your normal meals. Drink liquids every hour
Test your blood glucose and urine every four hours. Call your doctor if your blood glucose is more than 250 mg/ dl or if you have ketones in your urine.
Ask someone to check-in on you several times a day.
Let your doctor know if you have a fever or diarrhoea, are vomiting, or if you are ill longer than two days.