Indian Meal Plan For Gestational Diabetes


Indian meal plan is perfect for gestational diabetes . To combat gestational diabetes, what you eat is as important as what you don’t. If you usually consume a protein-rich diet with healthy fats, it’s fine in moderate amounts. Swati Sachdeva gives a day-wise Indian meal plan perfect for gestational diabetes.

Indian Meal Plan For Gestational Diabetes

A woman’s pregnancy is one of the happiest times of her life. However, as the body changes to support the development and care of a kid, it becomes crucial to monitor both the mother’s and the unborn child’s health to prevent any problems during pregnancy. Additionally, there is a potential that the baby’s health could be impacted if the mother gets diabetes. The expectant woman can receive a lot of pointless advice from friends and family, which will only make her anxious. So let’s study a little bit more about gestational diabetes rather than listening to the doubters.

A disease known as gestational diabetes is connected to pregnancy. While studies have shown that adhering to a balanced diet for gestational diabetes can substantially help the mother take control of the illness, gestational diabetes has the potential to negatively impact the mother and her unborn child.

But let’s first address some related concerns before going into detail about a gestational diabetes diet. What is gestational diabetes, a few of its symptoms, risk factors, and causes, as well as how to manage gestational diabetes with a healthy diet, are some of the questions that need to be answered.

What is Gestational Diabetes?
Overview, Causes and Symptoms

A woman can develop diabetes or high blood sugar levels while she is pregnant, a disease known as gestational diabetes mellitus or pregnancy diabetes. Gestational diabetes, one of the three forms of diabetes, can develop whether or not the expectant mother had the disease before to becoming pregnant.

The majority of the time, however, it affects people who have never had diabetes.Additionally, having gestational diabetes during pregnancy does not guarantee that your blood sugar levels will remain high after giving birth. It usually disappears shortly after delivery for many women. However, if you are given a diagnosis of gestational diabetes, your chances of later getting type 2 diabetes increase.

What stage of pregnancy is when gestational diabetes manifests?

The conclusion of the second trimester, specifically between weeks 24 and 28, is when gestational diabetes is most frequently diagnosed. Your diabetologist will frequently perform a gestational diabetes test as a precaution at the end of the second trimester. The likelihood that your child may develop diabetes in the future increases if gestational diabetes is not treated or identified. Therefore, it is preferable if we treat it early to reduce the risk and difficulties associated with gestational diabetes throughout pregnancy and delivery. In these situations, a diet for gestational diabetes advised by a nutritionist can significantly aid in regulating the mother’s blood sugar levels and ensuring the safety of the unborn child.

How does gestational diabetes affect the baby?

In this chapter, we will look at some complications of gestational diabetes and how it affects the baby. The complications can hurt the growing baby and that is why a timely diagnosis is important to help control its effects over the course of the pregnancy. The expecting mother, as well as her baby, can both experience complications with gestational diabetes. Here are some ways pregnancy diabetes can affect your baby:

Higher than normal birth weight – High blood sugar levels during pregnancy can lead to their babies growing bigger than normal. This is one kind of complication with pregnancy diabetes that can lead to birth injuries or an emergency C-section delivery as the baby will be less likely or unable to smoothly pass through the birth canal.

Premature birth – This is closely linked to a higher birth weight where the woman would be forced to deliver earlier than the due date due to the baby’s large size.

Breathing difficulties – A serious complication of gestational diabetes where the babies shortly after birth may experience respiratory distress syndrome – a critical condition that hinders breathing.

Low blood sugar levels – Although gestational diabetes is linked to high blood sugar levels, some babies may experience the opposite just after birth. Extremely low blood sugar levels may lead to babies having frequent seizures. However, monitored feeding sessions and providing glucose solutions intravenously from time to time can be used to treat low sugar levels during birth.

Obesity in the future – Babies born to gestational diabetic mothers are more likely to develop obesity and also type 2 diabetes later in their life.

Stillbirth – Untreated and unmonitored gestational diabetes during pregnancy can ultimately result in the death of the baby either before or soon after birth.

How does gestational diabetes affect the mother?

While we have seen how gestational diabetes in pregnant women poses risks to the baby, it can also affect the expecting mother. Let us look at some complications of gestational diabetes that can harm the mother:

High blood pressure – Gestational diabetic mothers are at risk of developing high blood pressure and pre-eclampsia. Pre-eclampsia is a pregnancy complication that usually develops during the 20th-week mark or even after delivery. If untreated, it may cause high blood pressure, headache, blurring of vision, protein in the urine, fluid retention and organ damage that can threaten the lives of both the mother and the baby. This might cause growth problems in the child as it grows. Although the causes of pre-eclampsia are not conclusive, it is usually tied to problems with the placenta.

Delivery via C Section – While not really a complication of gestational diabetes, due to the increased birth weight and size of the baby, mothers diagnosed with gestational diabetes are more likely to have a C-section delivery as opposed to a normal vaginal delivery.

Diabetes later in life – A history of gestational diabetes can cause the mother to develop the condition again during another pregnancy. There is also the risk of developing type 2 diabetes in the future.

What causes gestational diabetes?

Unfortunately, it is yet unknown what specifically causes gestational diabetes. However, it is believed that the cause is related to a woman’s endocrine system. However, based on what we currently understand, gestational diabetes is not caused by a deficiency in insulin but rather by the development of a number of other hormones during pregnancy that decrease the body’s ability to use insulin effectively. The body begins to create significant levels of certain pregnancy hormones during pregnancy, even before conception, which aid in the growth of the fetus.

What function does insulin serve in our bodies, then? Its role is to deliver blood sugar to cells so that it can be transformed there into energy. Since blood glucose is passed on to the unborn child throughout pregnancy, a minor insulin resistance is typical. On the other hand, elevated insulin resistance can result in an unexpected spike in blood glucose levels that leads to gestational diabetes.

What are the symptoms and signs of gestational diabetes?

A lot of pregnant women don’t have any uncommon symptoms or warning indications of gestational diabetes. This is why we frequently fail to diagnose gestational diabetes. At the conclusion of the second trimester, gynecologists typically administer a gestational diabetes test to determine whether the condition is present or not.

However, some expectant mothers may experience minor symptoms that closely match those of other types of diabetes. Here are a few typical indicators of gestational diabetes:

  •   Increased thirst
  •   Fatigue
  •   Dryness in mouth
  •   Excessive urination
  •   Blurred vision
When to see a doctor?

Although all pregnant women are routinely tested for gestational diabetes regardless of the appearance of symptoms, it is critical that you see a diabetologist as soon as you experience any of the above symptoms between weeks 12 and 16 to ensure an accurate diagnosis. Yes, all pregnant women experience fatigue. A child’s carrying is after all not a man’s task! However, it is better to visit your doctor for a checkup just to be on the safe side.

Your gynecologist will advise medication, diabetic care supplements, light exercise, and/or a strict diet, depending on your condition, in addition to routine check-ups, if gestational diabetes is proven.

In a Nutshell
  • Gestational diabetes is a condition where a woman develops high blood sugar levels during pregnancy due to hormones that hinder normal insulin resistance.
  • The complications of gestational diabetes for the baby and mother are plenty and can be severe if left untreated or unmonitored.
  • The symptoms of gestational diabetes are very similar to general diabetes however pregnant women may not experience any symptoms.
  • Gestational diabetes can be treated by lifestyle changes including a balanced diet and exercise.

Indian Foods for Gestational Diabetes
What to Include In My Diet?

Everyone has a different idea of what to eat when pregnant. Therefore, it is wiser to disregard them and act in your own best interests. Learn about your nutritional needs by consulting a nutritionist. In addition, a nutritionist can assist you in controlling your blood sugar levels if you have been diagnosed with gestational diabetes.

The best diet for gestational diabetes is one that is well-balanced and contains the proper amounts of carbohydrates, proteins, and fats to maintain healthy blood sugar levels. When processed sugar is ingested in excess or if carbohydrate-rich foods are not adequately spaced out throughout the day, blood sugar levels frequently increase. Based on your blood sugar levels, a dietician or nutritionist can help you understand the gestational diabetes diet you need. They will be able to provide you with the precise number of carbohydrates you should consume each day.


Some healthy carbohydrate foods for gestational diabetes that you can include in your diet are:

Whole grains – In your diet plan for gestational diabetes, include foods rich in whole grain cereals like oats, millet, barley, quinoa and sorghum. They are high in fibre and have a low glycemic index. They support healthy bowel movements and help reduce your risk of obesity and type 2 diabetes in the long run.

Leafy vegetables and legumes – Including vegetables like beans, peas, lentils, corn, spinach, lettuce, etc in your diet chart for gestational diabetes have shown to regulate blood sugar levels while providing essential nutrition to you and your baby need for healthy development.

Brown rice – A great substitute for white rice, brown rice has a slightly lower glycemic index and retains more vitamins, minerals and antioxidants than white rice. Include brown rice in moderate amounts for lunch or dinner as part of your diet.

Fruits that are low in sugar – Some fruits like lemon, orange, guava, green apple can help boost your recommended vitamin C intake while also satisfying your sweet tooth in a healthy way


Women who are pregnant are recommended to eat at least 2 to 3 portions of protein-rich foods every day. Some excellent sources of protein that you can include in your vegetarian diet plan for gestational diabetes include:

Dal Sprouts – These can include mung dal sprouts, white channa sprouts all of which apart from protein, are also rich in fibre.

Paneer (or cottage cheese) – Paneer is known to aid in weight loss as well as promote bone health and is recommended for the treatment of diabetes.

Lentils – Not just low in calories but also rich in folate and iron, lentils are an excellent protein-rich food to include in your diet and are known to greatly support heart health.

Yoghurt – Yoghurt and curds contain good bacteria that are essential for optimum gut health. They function to improve digestion and are a recommended source of protein for diabetics.

Soya chunks – Soy contains compounds known as isoflavones that help in lowering the risk of diabetes and heart disease.

Eggs – Eggs are a great low-carb food that can be included in a non-vegetarian diet plan for gestational diabetes. While the egg white boasts higher protein content the yolk contains healthy fats that do not affect blood sugar levels. They in fact have a very low glycemic index and are an ideal food option for diabetics.

Poultry – Chicken is another recommended option for patients with gestational diabetes. Being high in protein and low in fat, if made in a healthy way is a great addition to the diet chart for gestational diabetes.

Fish – Fish and seafood, in general, is high in protein and low in fat. It also contains omega-3 fatty acids that can help promote brain health during pregnancy.


Nuts like almonds, walnuts or peanuts – Nuts provide essential proteins and fats that help boost heart health. They are great snacks for gestational diabetes patients as they are low in carbohydrates and high in healthy fats, protein and fibre.

Seeds like pumpkin seeds, chia seeds, flaxseeds and sesame seeds – Seeds also are great snacks for gestational diabetes patients and are high in healthy fats. You can either consume them raw or roast them (without oil) for more crunch.

Olive Oil – High in monounsaturated fats and antioxidants, olive oil if used in limited amounts is shown to have many health benefits including reducing chronic inflammation that is associated with type 2 diabetes and obesity.

Avocado – Another great fruit that is high in healthy fats and all the essential vitamins needed for optimum health. A low-carb food with a low glycemic index, it has been known to make people feel fuller longer without the unhealthy calories.

The gestational diabetes meal plan should, in conclusion, comprise a combination of slow-digesting carbohydrates, rich protein sources, and healthy fats that will not only help you maintain your weight but also your blood sugar levels. Choose to eat gestational diabetes-friendly snacks such as seasonal fruit, roasted seeds, mixed nuts, boiled chickpeas, or even a glass of lime juice or buttermilk if you still feel hungry throughout the day. These snacks must be consumed in moderation if you have gestational diabetes, though. For best health, portion control is essential. The best diet for gestational diabetes is eating small meals six to seven times daily at regular intervals of two to three hours. This will aid in enhancing metabolism, which in turn will normalize blood glucose levels and guarantee that you and your unborn child are receiving the correct nutrition for a healthy pregnancy and birth.

In a Nutshell
  • A gestational diabetes diet for pregnancy is one that is balanced and rich in low GI carbohydrates, protein and healthy fats.
  • Carbohydrate sources like whole grains, legumes, brown rice and low-sugar fruits are some of the best foods for gestational diabetes as they are slow metabolizing preventing a spike in blood sugar levels
  • Paneer, soy chunks, curds, chicken, fish, eggs are great sources of protein and should be included in the gestational diabetes meal plan. It is important to also include healthy fats like nuts, seeds, olive oil and avocado in your diet plan for gestational diabetes as they contain a plethora of essential vitamins and minerals that boost heart health and brain function.

Indian Foods to Avoid with Gestational Diabetes
What to Exclude From My Diet Plan

There will inevitably be certain cravings while you are pregnant. Some might be typical, while others might be rather odd. However, you need to watch what you put in your body if you have gestational diabetes.

Gestational diabetes is a disorder that has the potential to affect both the expectant mother and her unborn child, as we have discussed in previous chapters. It is crucial that the mother and her unborn child receive the proper nutrition that comes from a balanced diet rich in complex carbs, proteins, and healthy fats because diet plays a significant role in the management of gestational diabetes. To ensure both the safety of the woman and the unborn child, a patient with gestational diabetes must severely restrict or totally eliminate several food groups from her diet. Here are some Indian meals to steer clear of if you have gestational diabetes in greater detail:

Soft drinks although tasty and refreshing on a hot summer’s day are high in sugar and artificial flavours. As much as possible, soft drinks and any other sugary drinks should be eliminated from a gestational diabetes diet. Substitute soft drinks with other natural refreshing drinks like coconut water, lime juice (without sugar) or spiced buttermilk. These will not only ensure your sugar levels are in check but will also aid in digestion.

Alcohol, in any case, should be completely avoided during pregnancy. Even a glass of wine with the lowest alcohol content has the potential to cause birth defects and congenital disabilities in unborn babies and so should be avoided at all costs.

Icecream, cakes, pastries, chocolates, jamuns, rasgullas, make for the tastiest of desserts, however, should be consumed in strict limitation or even eliminated (if possible) from your gestational diabetes diet chart. For the obvious reason, sweets contain high amounts of added sugar and can worsen the effects of gestational diabetes. If you do feel like going after some dessert after dinner, try drinking a cup of peppermint or chamomile tea. They are rich in antioxidants, contain zero calories yet have a sweet aftertaste that can help satisfy your sweet cravings.

Due to their high sugar and fat content, processed foods including artificially sweetened morning cereals, prepackaged fruit juices, sauces, salad dressings, flavor-infused yoghurt, and processed deli meats must be strictly avoided when following a gestational diabetes diet. They are believed to contain little to no nutritious value in addition to the sugar. Try to include as many natural foods as you can in your gestational diabetes meal plan, such as fresh juices, home-set curds, unflavored oats, etc. Your energy levels will be maintained throughout the day and you’ll get the nutrition you need from natural meals.

Another group of foods to avoid with gestational diabetes is fried foods. These include potato chips, french fries, bajjis, pakodas, murukkus, samosas, vadas and basically any food that has been deep-fried. Oil and butter are high in saturated fats and have the ability to increase bad cholesterol or LDL levels in the blood.

Foods with a high glycemic index, such as white rice, pasta, white bread, naans, potatoes, and high-sugar fruits including custard apples, pineapples, dry fruits, and overripe bananas, will quickly spike your blood sugar levels after intake. To minimize rapid and needless blood sugar increases, it is advisable to take certain meals in moderation if they cannot be fully avoided. Try replacing white rice in your Indian gestational diabetic diet plan with brown rice or quinoa, stay away from pasta, and switch out white bread for whole-grain or multigrain bread. Despite the fact that these alternatives are healthier, it is still advisable to choose fresh fruits and vegetables and consume these carbohydrates every day in moderation.

Contact a certified doctor or dietitian for assistance in creating a menu for a gestational diabetes diet that is appropriate for your condition if you are unsure of what you must eat and items to avoid with the disease. Instead, opt to schedule your meals so that they contain a daily balance of complex carbohydrates, protein, and healthy fats, while avoiding desserts and other processed foods to the greatest extent feasible.

In the end, a healthy diet for gestational diabetes maintains your blood glucose levels while also supplying the most nourishment and energy from foods that are found in nature. Let’s now have a look at a sample 7-day vegetarian and non-vegetarian Indian gestational diabetic diet plan.

In a Nutshell
  • Soft drinks, sweets, alcohol, processed foods, fried foods, and foods naturally high in sugar or starch are some things to stay away from if you have gestational diabetes.
  • Given that it might result in congenital malformations and birth defects in an unborn child, alcohol should be strictly avoided throughout pregnancy.
  • To add greater nutritional value, brown rice, quinoa, and multigrain or whole-grain bread can be used in place of starchy items like white rice, pasta, and bread.
  • Although rice and bread should be consumed in moderation rather than fresh fruits and vegetables, complex carbs are still a crucial component of a balanced diet plan for gestational diabetes.

A Sample 7-Day Indian Gestational Diabetes Diet Plan
Managing Diabetes in Pregnancy with the Right Foods

It may seem as though your binge-eating days are gone if you are told you have gestational diabetes while pregnant, but this isn’t necessarily the case. Sincere to say, a gestational diabetes diet has no set menu. Your daily meals should be well-balanced in terms of complex carbohydrates, protein, and healthy fats. Finding the greatest foods for gestational diabetes in each person’s favourite cuisine will be the objective here as everyone may follow a different diet. For vegetarians with gestational diabetes, some excellent protein options are paneer, soy chunks, boiling chickpea salad (sundal), and curd. On the other hand, grilled chicken, grilled fish, eggs, and other lean meats can all be found on a non-vegetarian gestational diabetic diet menu as sources of protein.

Sample meal plan for gestational diabetes

Your everyday diet doesn’t have to be monotonous if you have gestational diabetes (GD). Here are four examples of customized meal programs for you.

To keep your taste senses satisfied, experiment with these example meal plans’ various permutations and combinations.

But keep in mind that the most effective diet is one that is specifically recommended by your doctor or nutritionist.

Based on your height, weight, degree of physical activity, the requirements of your developing baby, and your level of glucose intolerance, they can design a diet specifically for you. They may also consider your particular eating preferences.

Gestational diabetes diet plan 1: vegetarian

Early morning (between 6am – 7am)1 cup regular tea/green teaRoasted seeds such as watermelon (tarbooj), cucumber (kheera) and sesame (til) (approx. 25gm)
Breakfast (between 8am – 9am)2 slices of wholegrain bread (toasted)Bowl of fresh cottage cheese (paneer) (approx. 50gm) with green chutney
Mid-morning (11am)1 medium-sized seasonal fruit (approx.150 gm)1 glass spiced buttermilk (chhaach)
Lunch (between 1pm – 1.30pm)Carrot (gajar) and lettuce (salad patta) salad1 large bowl of stir-fried okra (bhindi)1 bowl of dal with fenugreek (methi) leaves1 cup tomato (tamatarraita2 medium-sized millet rotis
Evening (4pm)Limeade (nimbu pani)
Evening snack (6pm)Upma with peanuts (moongphali)
Dinner (8pm-8.30pm)Green leafy vegetables and dal1 bowl of mixed vegetables1 katori soya nuggets curry2 rotis
Bedtime1 cup low fat milk

Gestational diabetes diet plan 2: vegetarian

Early morning (between 6am – 7am)1 cup tea with cinnamon (dalchini)Sundal (approx. 20gm)
Breakfast (between 8am – 9am)2-3 millet (ragiidlisTomato (tamatar) and onion (pyaaz) chutney1 cup buttermilk (chhaach)
Mid-morning (11am)1 medium-sized seasonal fruit (approx. 150 gm)
Lunch (between 1pm – 1.30pm)Cucumber (kheera) and onion (pyaaz) salad1 bowl of sambhar with vegetables1 cup raita with mint (pudina)2 millet appams
Evening (4pm)A cup of upma
Evening snack (6pm)1 cup drumstick rasam
Dinner (8pm-8.30pm)Radish (moolie) salad1-2 bowls of cabbage (patta gobhi)1 bowl of seasonal vegetable curry2 wholewheat rotis or peas (matarpulao
Bedtime1 cup low fat milk

Gestational diabetes diet plan 3: non-vegetarian

Early morning (between 6am – 7am)1 cup regular tea/green teaRoasted seeds such as watermelon (tarbooj), cucumber (kheera) and sesame (til) (approx. 25gm)
Breakfast (between 8am – 9am)2 slices of whole grain bread (toasted)Egg bhurji (1 egg) with green chutney
Mid-morning (11am)1 medium-sized seasonal fruit (approx.150 gm)1 glass spiced buttermilk (chhaach)
Lunch (between 1pm – 1.30pm)Carrot (gajar) and lettuce (salad patta) salad1 large bowl of stir-fried okra (bhindi)Chicken (75g) with fenugreek (methi) leaves1 cup tomato (tamatarraita2 medium-sized millet rotis
Evening (4pm)Limeade (nimbu pani)
Evening snack (6pm)A bowl of boiled corn (makka)
Dinner (8pm-8.30pm)Green leafy vegetables with dalSautéed seasonal vegetablesMint (pudinaraitarotis
Bedtime1 cup low fat milk

Gestational diabetes diet plan 4: non-vegetarian

Early morning (between 6am – 7am)1 cup tea with cinnamon (dalchini)Roasted gram (chana) (approx. 20gm)
Breakfast (between 8am – 9am)2 gram flour (besancheela1 cup curd
Mid-morning (11am)1 medium-sized seasonal fruit (approx. 150 gm)
Lunch (between 1pm – 1.30pm)Cucumber (kheera) and capsicum (Simla mirch) salad1 bowl of kidney beans (rajma)1 cup raita with onion (pyaaz) and mint (pudina)2-3 medium-sized millet rotis
Evening (4pm)A cup of sprouts chaat
Evening snack (6pm)1 cup tomato (tamatar) soup
Dinner (8pm-8.30pm)Radish (moolie) salad1-2 bowls of cabbage (patta gobhi)1 bowl of chicken/fish gravy2 millet or wholewheat rotis
Bedtime1 cup low fat milk

Tips for healthy eating with gestational diabetes (GD)

  • Occasionally, 3 tablespoons of cooked rice, particularly brown rice, can be used in place of 1 roti.
  • When feasible, choose wholegrain kinds, and incorporate a variety of millets in your diet. Popular choices include ragi (finger millet), bajra (pearl millet), jowar (sorghum), kangni (foxtail millet), and kodo millet. (kodra). You can choose the best ones for you with assistance from a doctor or dietician.
  • Fruit is a beneficial component of any diet, but some fruits are too sweet for women with GD’s bodies to handle. Choose fruits with a low glycaemic index (GI), such as papaya, Indian gooseberry (amla), guava (amrood), pear (nashpati), plum (aloo bukhara), sweet lime (mausambi), and peach (aadoo). (papita).
  • When making meals, use as little oil and fat as possible. Aim for a daily maximum of no more than 2-3 teaspoons. Additionally, there’s no need to eat a lot of ghee or other fatty meals.
  • Avoid skipping meals. Be regular with your mealtimes and the amount of food you consume at each one. If you spread out your food equally throughout the day and regularly from day to day, your blood sugar will be more steady.
  • Simple sugar-containing foods and beverages, such as flavored teas, flavored waters, fizzy drinks, and the majority of sweets, should be consumed in moderation or avoided altogether. These foods can significantly raise your blood sugar levels. If you require a sweet fix, talk to your doctor about consuming foods sweetened with an artificial sweetener.

Gestational Diabetes Management: Diabetes Friendly Indian Diet During Pregnancy

The National guideline for the diagnosis and management of gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM) recommends that all pregnant women be screened at their initial antenatal visit. The second test should be performed between 24 and 28 weeks of gestation if the first test is negative.

The World Health Organization recommends this single-step test for diagnosing GDM utilizing a 75gm glucose dose during an oral glucose tolerance test (OGTT), regardless of the timing of the previous meal. The patient is given recommended treatment for gestational diabetes if the 2-hour Blood Sugar is greater than 140 mg/dL.

Overall food intake during pregnancy

You must consume more protein overall and manage your carbohydrate consumption by consuming more complex carbohydrates, making sure that they account for roughly 50% of your daily needs. Based on your pre-pregnancy Body Mass Index (BMI) and weight gain, your dietician will be able to design it.

In the proper portions divided over three main meals, complex carbohydrates in the form of rotis prepared from whole wheat, ragi (nachni), millet jowar, and bajra are beneficial. To maintain blood glucose levels and prevent a sharp decrease, it is also beneficial to take two snacks in between meals.

Even if a woman is obese, the National Institute of Nutrition (NIN) national guidelines do not suggest drastically cutting calories because such diets in women with GDM can “adversely impair fetal growth.”

But for obese women with GDM, they advise “moderate caloric restriction (reduction by 30% of estimated energy needs) as it may improve glycemic control without ketonemia and reduce maternal weight gain.”

Grain, cereal, and pulse foods, as well as fruits and dairy products, all include carbohydrates. Controlling the type of carbohydrates you consume and making sure that each meal has both protein and fiber, in addition to carbs, are two ways to control blood glucose levels.

Here are some examples of foods to include in your meals  to have a healthy balanced diet during pregnancy:


Breakfast should consist of 1-2 carbohydrate servings like chapatti, dalia, rolled oats, poha, idli etc. along with one serving from protein rich foods like milk, curd, paneer, egg etc.

Lunch and Dinner

Instead of piling your plate with rice or rotis, try to make sure half the plate is filled with nutritious vegetables like green beans, cabbage, carrots etc.

Take a serving of either rice or roti (don’t combine both in one meal) that occupies about a quarter of the space in the remaining half. Then fill it with good proteins like egg, chicken, lean meat, dal (legumes), soy or paneer. Include a serving of non-sweetened, preferably home made yoghurt (dahi).


Some healthy mid-meal snack options include sprouts, vegetable dalia, vegetable poha, idli, vegetable uttapam or besan chilla with less oil. Avoid fried food and junk food and carb based snacks like puffed rice (kurmura/bhel) or corn chivda .

How to calculate total carbohydrates based on calories or total energy

Knowing how much energy you need overall will help you determine how much of that energy comes from carbohydrates, protein, and lipids. As a result, you can make meal plans that make sure you don’t consume too many carbohydrates.

Your nutritionist determines your daily caloric needs based on your weight, level of activity, and basal metabolic rate. (BMR). body For instance, if a woman with a BMI in the normal weight range needs about 1877 kcal of total daily energy, she will need about 2227 kcal after adding about 350 kcal for the extra energy needed during pregnancy.

Therefore, the woman’s daily carbohydrate intake should be limited to 50%. Since one gram of carbohydrates contains roughly 4 calories, she should ideally consume no more than 1113/4 = 278g of carbohydrates during the day.

But keep in mind that, much like carbohydrates, fruits, vegetables, and milk all contain sugars that can be converted to glucose, including lactose, fructose, and starch. Because of this, you must speak with a nutritionist to determine the proper serving amount of these items in order to prevent fluctuations in your blood sugar.

You will be advised to avoid any direct source of glucose, such as sugar, jaggery, sweets, honey, etc. if you have gestational diabetes. Additionally, keep an eye out in your diet for additional undetected sources of sugar.

Other names for sugar to watch out for in nutrition labels:

  1. Barley malt
  2. Brown rice syrup
  3. Corn syrup
  4. Corn syrup solids
  5. Dextrin
  6. Dextrose
  7. Diastatic malt
  8. Ethyl maltol
  9. Glucose
  10. Glucose solids
  11. Lactose
  12. Malt syrup
  13. Maltodextrin
  14. Maltose
  15. Rice syrup

Diet Tips for GDM

  • Eat 3 main meals and 2 mid-meal snacks
  • Increase your protein intake.
  • Eat more complex carbs and starchy vegetables.
  • Ensure you get ample fibre.
  • Never skip breakfast.
  • Eat whole fruits and not juices.
  • Don’t eat any processed food like chips, sauces, bakery foods (even if it is not sweet), burgers, fries, breads (even if it says brown, wholewheat etc.).
  • Eat lean meats rather than organ meats.
  • Avoid artificial sweeteners
  • Look for alternative names for sugar on food nutritional labels.

Getting detected with Gestational Diabetes (GDM) or pregnancy-related diabetes can be a scary affair. But trust us, with the right lifestyle guidance, your blood sugars can be brought under control for a healthy pregnancy and childbirth.



Gestational diabetes is a type of diabetes that occurs during pregnancy, typically around the 24th to 28th week of pregnancy. It is characterized by high blood sugar levels that can pose risks to both the mother and the baby if not managed properly. Here are some frequently asked questions (FAQs) about gestational diabetes:

  1. What is gestational diabetes?

Gestational diabetes is a type of diabetes that occurs only during pregnancy. It is caused by hormonal changes that affect the way the body uses insulin, a hormone that helps regulate blood sugar levels. Gestational diabetes can result in high blood sugar levels, which can pose risks to both the mother and the baby if not managed properly.

  1. What causes gestational diabetes?

The exact cause of gestational diabetes is not fully understood, but it is believed to be related to the hormonal changes that occur during pregnancy. Pregnancy hormones can affect the way the body uses insulin, leading to insulin resistance, which can result in high blood sugar levels.

  1. What are the risk factors for gestational diabetes?

There are several risk factors that may increase a woman’s likelihood of developing gestational diabetes. These include being overweight or obese, having a family history of diabetes, having had gestational diabetes in a previous pregnancy, being older than 25, having a history of polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), having a history of gestational diabetes in a previous pregnancy, and belonging to certain ethnic groups, such as Hispanic, African-American, Asian, Pacific Islander, or Native American.

  1. How is gestational diabetes diagnosed?

Gestational diabetes is typically diagnosed through a glucose tolerance test (GTT), which involves drinking a sugary solution and then having blood sugar levels tested at specific intervals. If blood sugar levels are higher than normal, a diagnosis of gestational diabetes may be made.

  1. What are the risks of gestational diabetes to the mother?

Gestational diabetes can pose risks to the mother if not managed properly. High blood sugar levels during pregnancy can increase the risk of developing high blood pressure, preeclampsia (a serious condition that affects blood pressure and other organs), and gestational hypertension (high blood pressure during pregnancy). Gestational diabetes can also increase the risk of needing a cesarean section (C-section) for delivery.

  1. What are the risks of gestational diabetes to the baby?

High blood sugar levels during pregnancy can also pose risks to the baby. Babies born to mothers with gestational diabetes may be larger than average (macrosomia), which can increase the risk of difficult delivery, birth injuries, and the need for a C-section. High blood sugar levels can also increase the baby’s risk of low blood sugar (hypoglycemia) after birth, respiratory distress syndrome (a condition that affects the baby’s breathing), and developing type 2 diabetes later in life.

  1. How is gestational diabetes managed?

The management of gestational diabetes typically involves a combination of lifestyle changes, blood sugar monitoring, and possibly medication. This may include following a healthy diet that is balanced in carbohydrates, protein, and fats, monitoring blood sugar levels regularly, getting regular physical activity or exercise, and taking medications (such as insulin or oral medications) if needed. In some cases, women with gestational diabetes may also need to undergo fetal monitoring to check the baby’s well-being during pregnancy.

  1. Can gestational diabetes be prevented?

While gestational diabetes cannot always be prevented, there are some steps that women can take to reduce their risk. This includes maintaining a healthy weight before pregnancy, eating a balanced diet, staying physically active, and getting regular prenatal care. It is also important to manage any existing health conditions, such as PCOS or a history of gestational diabetes, with the help

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