Type 2 Diabetes – Reducing the Risk of Developing Gestational Diabetes

A healthy diet and regular physical activity are two of the basic recommendations for preventing Gestational diabetes. Researchers at the University of Sydney in Campbelltown, New South Wales, Australia, as well as several research centers throughout Europe and the UK, looked at the results of structured programs for healthy meal plans and exercise for pregnant women at risk for developing Gestational diabetes. The results were published in the journal of the American Diabetes Association, Diabetes Care in May, 2015. We have many more Diabetes Help Articles Now Available.

The study, termed the DALI Lifestyle Pilot, included 150 pregnant women considered to be at high risk for developing diabetes during their pregnancy…

  • each women had a body mass index of at least 29.
  • the women were randomized into healthy eating, physical activity, and both healthy eating and physical activity groups.
  • all participants were given five face-to-face coaching sessions and four telephone coaching sessions, to help them stay motivated.

Their goal was to gain less than 5 kg during their pregnancy.

By 24 weeks of pregnancy…

  • the women who followed a healthy meal plan showed less pregnancy weight gain and lower blood sugar levels than those in the physical activity only group. Their insulin sensitivity was similar though.
  • the healthy eating and physical activity group showed little difference from the healthy eating group.

At 35 to 37 weeks of pregnancy it was found…

  • 32 percent of the women had developed diabetes.
  • 20 percent were able to gain less than 5 kg.

From these results the scientists concluded healthy eating was associated with less weight gain than was physical activity. They suggest that further study will add to our knowledge of how to prevent Gestational diabetes.

As early as 1823, conditions resembling diabetes in pregnant women were described in the medical literature…

  • in the 1940s and 1950s it was found mothers who developed Type 2 diabetes after pregnancy, had babies at high risk for death during their first 28 days after birth.
  • in 1964 doctors in Boston first began using the screening test still used today to diagnose the condition.

The terms “carbohydrate intolerance of pregnancy” and “pre-diabetes of pregnancy” were considered too mild for the women and their insurance companies to take seriously. In 1979 the First International Workshop-Conference on Gestational Diabetes Mellitus made the term official.

Some controversy still exists as to whether Gestational diabetes actually begins during pregnancy or whether a pre-existing form of diabetes is only discovered at that time. In either case, women found to be diabetic at 24 to 28 weeks of pregnancy need special care. We have many more Diabetes Help Articles Now Available.