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What To Eat For Breakfast With Gestational Diabetes

Whether Youre Looking For A Quick And Simple Store Bought Diabetes Breakfast Idea Or A Fun Go To Recipe To Meal Prep Ive Got You Covered

How I Manage My Gestational Diabetes | What I Eat for Breakfast | K’s Mum

Letâs dive into what we need to include in breakfast when living with diabetes. And, then Iâll share my favorite diabetes breakfast ideas as a registered dietitian living with diabetes myself.

*This article is not intended to provide medical advice, diagnosis, opinion, treatment or services. This article and the links contained in it provide general information for educational purposes only. The information provided in this article is not a substitute for medical care. It should not be used in place of the advice of your physician or registered dietitian.*

Breakfast The Worst Meal Of The Day For Most

With gestational diabetes, breakfast is usually the hardest meal of the day to keep levels lowered and stabilised with. Due to natural raises in blood sugar levels at dawn , we are more insulin resistant at the start of the day. This means that out of all the meals we eat, breakfast is usually the hardest meal to tolerate.

How To Build A Healthy Breakfast If You Have Gestational Diabetes

If you’re pregnant or hope to become pregnant, you might be concerned about a possible complication: gestational diabetes. Gestational diabetes causes high blood sugar during the second half of pregnancy.

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Because diabetes statistics show gestational diabetes is common, most pregnant women are routinely screened for it between weeks 24 and 28 of their pregnancies, according to the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases. If you are diagnosed with the condition, there are a number of things you can do to keep your blood sugars within the target range â including managing your diet.

Eating a healthy breakfast is a smart start to every day, but it’s especially important for pregnant women who are concerned about their blood sugar levels. Here’s what you need to know about healthy breakfast choices for a gestational diabetes meal plan.

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Eat A Healthy Breakfast

Itâs often called the most important meal of the day. That may be even more true for people with diabetes. A morning meal helps to keep your blood sugar steady all day long. One study found that skipping it caused bigger blood sugar spikes after lunch and dinner. But not all breakfasts are created equal. To start your day off right, your breakfast should include fiber, lean protein, and healthy fats.

Snack Ideas For Gestational Diabetes:

Top 10 Gestational Diabetes Breakfast Ideas (&  recipes) No Eggs!

Eating small portions of food after every two to three hours is one of the advised ways to keep sugar levels under control.

While choosing snacks you should try to keep carb number as low as possible. You should opt for the snacks that are rich in proteins i.e. meat, poultry, fish, egg, peanut butter, and cheese.

List of the foods that you can eat as snacks if you have gestational diabetes include:

  • Raspberries, blueberries, and walnuts with yogurt
  • Warm kale and faro salad
  • Hummus with vegetables

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Understand The Glycaemic Index

The gylcaemic index is a measure of how quickly foods containing carbs affect your blood sugar levels after you eat them. Some foods affect sugars levels quickly and so have a high GI, and others take longer to affect blood sugar levels and so have a low GI. To help you manage your blood sugar levels, go for carbs with a lower GI. Youll still need to think about your portion sizes. Its the amount of carbs in the meal that will affect your blood sugar levels the most. And not all low GI foods are healthy, so make sure you read food labels and make a healthy choice.

Fast Food Breakfast For Diabetes

What can people with diabetes eat for breakfast at McDonalds and other fast food restaurants? I actually have a whole separate blog post on my top fast food picks for diabetes and it includes a whole section on breakfast.

Generally speaking, you want to look for options that are not fried, offer a vegetable if possible, and have both protein and fiber.

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General Guidelines For A Gestational Diabetes Diet

Generally, you should focus on general heart-healthy eating practices. These can help manage your symptoms without medication. Good practices to follow include:

  • Eat plenty of fruit and vegetables be sure to choose fresh or frozen foods. Canned fruit and vegetables can be higher in sugar.
  • Choose fiber-rich foods fiber helps you stay full and helps control blood sugar levels.
  • Consume enough protein protein is essential to build and repair tissue. Generally the recommended amount of protein is 0.36 x your body weight in pounds. E.g a 140 lb woman would need to eat 50 grams of protein a day.
  • Eat healthy carbohydrates complex carbohydrates and take longer to break down into glucose. Too many unhealthy carbohydrates can spike your blood sugar. Be sure to choose carbohydrates like fruit, vegetables, whole grains, legumes and low-fat dairy.
  • Choose healthy fats these include unsaturated fats found in foods like olive oil, avocadoes and nuts. Saturated fats are found in foods like red meat and processed foods.
  • Keep an eye on portion sizes so you dont overeat.

Gestational Diabetes Recipes And Meal Ideas

Breakfast Ideas for Gestational Diabetes

A diagnosis of gestational diabetes can feel confusing and scary. The good news is that there are more resources available to you now than ever before, and gestational diabetes is treatable. Learn more about this form of diabetes to empower you to have a safe and healthy pregnancy.

According to the American Diabetes Association, gestational diabetes affects 10% of pregnancies in the U.S.

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Q: What Can I Eat For Breakfast If I Have Gestational Diabetes

A: This is one of the most common questions asked by patients with Gestational Diabetes.

Pregnant women either wake up very hungry, or nauseous and uninterested in food this is sometimes related to morning sickness, but can also be due to not taking enough carbohydrates at bedtime to help them get through the night.

For many pregnant women, morning mealtime tends to be more carbohydrate-rich. There is a reason for this. Overnight, pregnant moms need to provide glucose both for their baby and for their own needs . Normally, we store sugar in our bodies in the form of a starch called glycogen, both in the liver and in the muscle.

For most non-pregnant women, the amount of glycogen that can be stored is more than enough to get through the night. However, for pregnant women, glycogen often runs out overnight, and they wake up feeling famished, irritable, weak, and nauseated. This is why judiciously taking some carbohydrates at bedtime in moderate amounts can really help with morning/breakfast needs. In general, we recommend a small number of bedtime carbohydrates mixed with some other types of nutrients, such as fiber, protein, and healthy fats.

Healthy bedtime snacks

  • Low-fat cheese with whole-wheat crackers
  • Baby carrots
  • 100% sugar-free Greek yogurt
  • Sliced apple with peanut butter

Bed time snacks to avoid

  • Fruit juices

What Causes Gestational Diabetes

Gestational diabetes means that your body isnt making enough insulin, a hormone made by the pancreas that helps to regulate blood sugar levels. During pregnancy, your body makes more hormones, and you also gain weight. These changes affect how your body uses insulin, called insulin resistance.

All pregnant women have some insulin resistance during late pregnancy, but some women have insulin resistance before they get pregnant they then start pregnancy with a higher need for insulin, and this puts them at risk for gestational diabetes.

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Eating For Diabetes Management

One of the first things your doctor may suggest is a consultation with a registered dietitian . Dietitians are specially trained to educate patients on what to eat. Carbohydrates are converted into blood sugar, which is crucial for every aspect of our bodies . So it’s important to include carbohydrates at meals and snacks, in addition to a source of protein and fiber.

Eating three meals and two snacks throughout the day can help prevent dips or spikes in blood sugar. Including a source of fiber-rich carbohydrate as well as protein at each meal or snack also helps to keep blood sugar levels more stable. If you’ve previously skipped meals or snacks, eating meals and snacks evenly spaced throughout the day is a good first step to managing blood sugar levels.

Good sources of high-fiber carbohydrates include:

  • 100% whole grain bread, crackers, tortillas, cereal, etc.
  • Whole grains, such as quinoa, whole wheat, oatmeal, and brown rice
  • Whole fruit, including frozen options
  • Starchy vegetables, such as potatoes or yams, winter squash, and corn
  • Beans and lentils

When it comes to gestational diabetes, everyone’s body responds differently to different variables. Monitoring your blood sugar at home and communicating with your doctor and an RD will help you find the right meal plan for you.

After Your Babys Birth

Gestational Diabetes Breakfast

The doctor may check your baby for signs of distress following your delivery. They may require additional monitoring of vital statistics, including blood sugar.

Your blood sugar will usually return to normal following the delivery of your baby. Keep in mind that if you’re diagnosed with gestational diabetes, it puts you at a higher risk for developing Type 2 diabetes in the future.

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How Do You Know If You Blood Sugars Are In A Healthy Range

Most women with gestational diabetes check their blood sugar with a blood glucose meter. This device uses a very small drop of blood from your finger to measure your blood sugar level. Target blood sugar levels are generally as follows:

  • Before meals, at bedtime, and overnight: 95 mg/dl or less
  • 1 hour after eating: 140 mg/dl or less
  • 2 hours after eating: 120 mg/dl or less

Your health care provider should discuss your target levels with you and advise you as to when and how often to check your blood sugars.

To get cutting-edge diabetes news, strategies for blood glucose management, nutrition tips, healthy recipes, and more delivered straight to your inbox, !

Type 2 Diabetes Breakfast

If you or a loved one is living with type 2 diabetes or prediabetes, breakfast should include plant based fat, fiber, and protein. Youâll want to avoid large amounts of added sugar, especially in the morning time. Many people experience increased insulin resistance right after waking up so it can be harder to regulate blood sugar levels if weâre eating too much sugar early in the day.

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Why Breakfast Burrito Casserole

Breakfast on the go has always been a must for me. I dont like to wake up early and Im always rushing out the door, but without a doubt Ill be hungry when I get settled. The problem is I dont like most breakfast foods when theyre reheated. Enter the Breakfast Burrito Casserole.

Its so delicious and satisfying and worth the effort. Make it, bake it, portion it into containers and grab it on your way out the door or when you roll out of bed. Its also great to have made for the kids during long school breaks and great for postpartum.

I like to keep recipes under 10 ingredients for yall, but this one has 14. But I PROMISE its worth it, and I show you how to make it easier!

How Does Diet Help Manage Gestational Diabetes

Top 10 Gestational Diabetes Breakfast Ideas (& recipes) No Eggs!

One of the hallmarks of pregnancy is food cravings. What you crave may vary throughout your pregnancy, and in healthy pregnancies, it’s OK to indulge a little here and there. However, if you are diagnosed with gestational diabetes, what you eat during your pregnancy has a huge impact on the condition.

A well-balanced diet is essential to managing this condition. Many women can avoid medication for gestational diabetes by simply changing their diet. Even with medication, though, a healthy diet is still indispensable for you and your baby.

It can be helpful to talk to a dietitian to understand how your diet affects your blood sugar. It can help you figure out which foods are best for you, so you can worry less about your diet and more about preparing for the arrival of your new child.

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Five Tips To Start Eating Better With Gestational Diabetes

Bissell recommends trying these five tips to get on the road to eating healthier:

  • Plan ahead: Think about your upcoming week and jot down a simple meal plan and grocery list to prevent last-minute food decisions because they usually result in less healthy choices.
  • Chop, chop: Pre-portion or chop up fruits and vegetables when you get home from the store to make them easier to grab when you need a snack.
  • Buy frozen: Stock your freezer with frozen vegetables. Even if the fresh veggies you picked out for the week go bad, you always have options.
  • Drink up: Carry a water bottle with you to stay hydrated.
  • Balance your meals: Eat protein and vegetables with each meal and snack. Aim for three meals a day with snacks in between as needed.

What To Eat For Breakfast If You Have Gestational Diabetes According To A Nutritionist

Gestational diabetes is diagnosed during pregnancy and occurs when your body cannot cope with the extra demand for insulin production resulting in high blood glucose levels. It can often initially be managed with healthy eating and regular physical activity.

But there are three basic components in effectively managing gestational diabetes:

  • Monitoring blood glucose levels
  • Physical activity
  • Adopting a healthy eating pattern

A healthy, balanced brekky is a great way to get those blood glucose levels in shape for the rest of the day, so try these 6 recipes the our Healthy Mummy nutritionist, Cheree approves of, to ensure youre getting all the nutrients you and your baby may need.

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Cottage Cheese Fruit And Nut Bowl

Cottage cheese is soft, creamy, delicious, and suitable for people with diabetes.

In addition, some research suggests that consuming dairy products may help reduce insulin resistance, which is a typical issue for people with diabetes (

  • Carbs: 19.3 grams
  • Fiber: 3.4 grams

Although the above example uses peanut butter, other types like cashew or almond butter are also fine to use. Just make sure to choose natural versions without added sugar.


Healthy fats like those in nut butter slow the release of sugar into your bloodstream and can help prevent blood sugar spikes. Combining nut butter with a slice of multigrain toast is a fine breakfast choice for people with diabetes.

Best Breakfast Foods For People With Diabetes

Best Diabetic Breakfast Rules: Good for Type 2 Diabetes

Coming up with nutritious, tasty, and satiating breakfast options can be a struggle if you have diabetes, given how many popular breakfast options are high in carbs.

With diabetes, its typically necessary to manage your blood sugar levels. And this includes managing how many carbs you consume.

When considering breakfast options, opt for those that are rich in protein and fiber, contain healthy fats, and provide low to moderate amounts of carbs.

Here are 10 great breakfast ideas for people with diabetes.

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Add Proteins And Vegetables

It’s important that pregnant women get enough protein, because protein is essential to the healthy growth of a fetus, according to the Mayo Clinic. Protein-rich foods such as eggs, poultry, tofu and fish are especially good choices for women with gestational diabetes, because protein doesn’t elevate blood sugar much. Dr. Halprin says that eggs are a particularly good breakfast food moderate portions of nuts and/or seeds are also great choices, but be mindful of their high fat content.

Vegetables may not seem like a traditional breakfast food, but according to the American Diabetes Association, non-starchy veggies are among the best foods for those looking to maintain healthy blood sugar levels. Picks such as leafy salad greens, broccoli and cauliflower are very low in calories and carbohydrates. Another plus: Their high fiber content can help you feel full for longer.

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Complications Of Diabetes During Pregnancy

Since diabetes affects almost every system in the body brain, heart, skin, nerves, eyes and kidneys failing to manage your glucose levels could put you at increased risk of a number of complications, from high blood pressure and preeclampsia to vision problems and even heart disease.

Babies of moms with unmanaged type 2 diabetes during pregnancy are also at increased risk of complications. If type 2 diabetes is not controlled properly during the first trimester, excessive sugar can affect the rapidly-developing fetal nervous system and comes with an increased risk of miscarriage.

In the second trimester, high fetal glucose levels can lead to macrosomia, a condition where a baby receives too many nutrients in the womb and is born larger than average.

Uncontrolled high blood sugar during pregnancy has also been linked to a number of other serious complications for babies, including heart problems, cleft palate, kidney and gastrointestinal tract disorders, brain damage, jaundice, hypocalcaemia and polycythemia .

Babies of women with diabetes are also at higher risk for obesity and type 2 diabetes later in life.

While diabetes does put you and your baby at increased risk of complications during pregnancy, these risks are greatly diminished when the diabetes is managed effectively.

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What Are The Complications

Gestational diabetes can cause concerns for both you and baby, but dont let it make you anxious. Here are some complications you may encounter that can be avoided by managing your health with your doctor.

Extra glucose in your body can make your baby gain weight. A bigger baby puts you at risk for having a more difficult delivery because:

Gestational diabetes also increases your risk of high blood pressure during pregnancy.

In most cases, gestational diabetes disappears after your baby is born. However, for some people, high blood sugar may persist after pregnancy. This is called type 2 diabetes.

Having gestational diabetes does put you at an increased risk of developing diabetes later on in life, too. Both you and your baby will be checked for diabetes after birth.

To make sure you decrease your risk for complications, talk with your doctor about continued care before and after baby is born.


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