Sunday, September 22, 2013

Gestational Diabetes and what I'm actually eating

So I passed my gestational diabetes screening, just barely at 138 so my OB had me do the 3 hour test - which I failed about a month ago. I then met with the diabetes educator and the dietitian who explained what my "rules" would be. Having a personal explanation made it seem easier and really, the "rules" about what to eat and how often make a lot of sense. That being said, it is certainly a different way of eating for me.

My "rules" are:
  • 1 serving of carbs = 15g of carbs
  • No fruit, milk or cold cereal for breakfast
  • Juice is not allowed at any time
  • Avoid foods that are pure sweets (candy, cakes, cookies)

After that, I'm then supposed to aim for the following number of servings for each snack and meal with the following additional rules.

7AM breakfast: 1-2 servings
9AM snack: 1-2 servings ***add protein if eating a starch
12PM lunch: 3 servings
3PM snack: 1-2 servings ***add protein if eating a starch
6PM dinner: 3-4 servings
9PM snack: 1-2 servings ***add protein if eating a starch

The times are approximate but the point is the dietitian said to try and make sure to eat something every 3 hours.

I will be honest and say eating on a schedule has been the hardest part and something I'm still struggling with it. I am nauseous all day, every day, so my strategy up to this point has been to eat when I can, what I can keep down. This usually meant I had a smoothie for breakfast, fruit like apples as snacks, soup with crackers for lunch and dinner. 

The good news? There are many "free" or "low carb" options where as long as I stay in the serving size, I don't have to count the carbs for towards my overall numbers. These include anything not in yellow for the diagram below:



On top of the rules, I check my blood sugar four times a day, when I wake up and then an hour after each meal. My target numbers as 90 for when I first wake up and 140 for each meal.

I have kept very close to the rules, but sadly, had to go on an oral medication, glyburide two weeks ago, with last week it increasing to 2.5mg daily, as diet alone was not keeping my numbers low enough. Since adding in the medication, the diet seems to be working. I am hoping to avoid insulin but of course, I will do whatever needs to be done to keep us both healthy!

Now to what I am actually eating, because as silly as it sounds, thinking of actual meals I can through together quickly was the one thing I spent the most time on with the dietitian. As far as drinks go, I only drink water, up to two cups of coffee without sugar but with sugar free creamer, unsweetened tea and milk. I can't lie, I'm getting pretty sick of water but I know it's important so I drink it like crazy.

Know that I am not the most creative person for meal planning and while these meal ideas are not complete meals, this is the food I am actually eating. I could lie and say I eat a handful of baby carrots or celery with each meal, but yeah, I suck at lying. Mainly everything below is food I can manage to keep down and that involves the least amount of prep time as possible, as I still get dizzy when I'm on my feet for more than 15-20 minutes.

Breakfast: 1-2 carbs *to get to two carbs, I usually just double everything below

Lunch and Dinner: 3 carbs for lunch and 3-4 for dinner


  • 1 serving of fruit (1) + 1 cup Special K Protein Cereal (1) + 1 8oz glass of milk

  • 1 cup of Beef with Veggies and Barley (2) +  23 Mini Saltine Crackers (1)

  • Wrap (crispy chicken (1), spinach, dressing (0) + 1 small tortilla (1)) + 1 fruit (1) 

  • 2 chicken quesadilla (chicken, cheese, 2 small tortilla (2)) + 1/3 cup rice (1)

  • 4 pieces of California Kitchen Thin Crust Pizza (pizza is cut into 12 pieces) (3) 

  •  Smart Ones:

  • Sweet and sour chicken (2) + 1 8oz glass of milk

  • Chicken Santa Fe (1) + 1 small tortilla (1) + 1 serving of fruit (1)

  • Chicken Parmesan (2) + 1 serving of fruit (1)

  •  2 cups chili (2) + sour cream, avocado + 1 serving of tortilla chips (1)

  • 1 cup of cold shrimp and veggies pasta  (3)

  • 3 mini chicken taco cups (3) 


  • Snacks: 1-2 carbs *I add the "freebies" here like cheeses, jerky, nuts and veggies

    And there you have it, that's about all I eat. Mainly if it's a meal I don't make myself (if My Mom is helping or we go to my in-laws) I just try to stay away from the starches and eat the meat and veggies.

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