Guest Blog Post: Is It Safe To Go Low Carb During Pregnancy?
Today my friend and colleague, Lily Nichols, a fellow registered dietitian and certified diabetes educator, shares her insight on carbohydrate-restricted diets during pregnancy. This is a controversial topic that I believe deserves more attention and investigation, which Lily does brilliantly in the following article. Is It Safe to Go Low Carb During Pregnancy? With the wide adoption of low-carbohydrate diets, many people question if they are safe during pregnancy. While quite a few women use a lower carbohydrate diet to conceive (since they are especially useful for women struggling with infertility), most medical professionals discourage women from continuing this diet during pregnancy. I find it ironic that if you tell your doctor that you plan to eat low carb during pregnancy, they’ll say it’s unsafe, but if you say you plan to eat a diet based on fresh vegetables, meat, fish, eggs, dairy, nuts, seeds, and a little fruit, they’ll encourage you to stay the course. The controversy over the safety of low carbohydrate diets in pregnancy stems primarily from misconceptions around ketosis. It’s incorrect, but widely accepted, that ketosis during pregnancy is harmful to a developing baby. When I first dove into the research, I was shocked to find that studies on healthy, non-diabetic pregnant women (eating a “regular” diet) show a marked elevation in ketones after a 12-18 hour fast, which is akin to eating dinner at 8pm and having breakfast at 8am (or skipping breakfast entirely). What’s more interesting is that pregnancy actually seems to favor a state of ketosis. Compared to non-pregnant women, blood ketone concentrations are about 3-fold higher in healthy pregnant women after an overnight fast. And in late pregnancy, metabolism shifts to a state o Continue reading >>
These 4 Factors Could All Cause A Pregnancy Test To Be Wrong
The results of a pregnancy test can be life-changing, but they can also (sometimes) be wrong. At the core, home tests are designed to pick up traces of human chorionic gonadotropin, or HCG a hormone that is produced during pregnancy. HCG is made by cells formed in the placenta, in order to help grow the fertilized egg after it has attached to the uterine wall, according to The American Pregnancy Association. "Like all hormones, HCG has several functions in the body," says Heather Bartos, M.D., ob-gyn. "The hormone is produced by placental cells and promotes the corpus luteum, a normal ovarian cyst in pregnancy, which secrets progesterone. Progesterone is necessary for a healthy pregnancy. HCG may also have an effect of helping prevent immune reactions toward a developing fetus." Pregnancy tests are advertised as 99 percent accurate, if done correctly. In short: a woman pees on the end of a dipstick and her urine comes into contact with a specially treated strip made to detect if HCG is present. In minutes, results are available via positive/negative symbols or pregnant/not pregnant text. But, sometimes other factors affect the results of even the most reliable kits. (Hit the reset button—and burn fat like crazy with The Body Clock Diet!) During pregnancy, HCG levels increase daily. If a woman thinks she's getting a false positive result, an immediate visit to the doctor is imperative. Blood tests should be taken, and administered again 48 hours later. Ultimately, the origin of elevated HCG in the blood needs to be determined. If it's due to pregnancy, these specific hormone levels will double within two days time, says Bartos. Blood tests can detect pregnancy sooner, and more accurately, than at-home tests. Here are four reasons why the stick you’ve peed on may be m Continue reading >>
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5 Things That Can Cause A False-positive Pregnancy Test
When Whitney Way Thore—the star of TLC's reality show My Big Fat Fabulous Life—took three pregnancy tests and each one was positive, she was pretty confident she was pregnant. She even took a urine test at the doctor's office, and it came back positive, too. It was amazing news for Thore, especially because she suffers from polycystic ovary syndrome. PCOS is a female endocrine disorder that is caused by a hormonal imbalance and is marked by small cysts on the ovaries. The disorder affects the body's ability to ovulate normally, causing really irregular periods and making PCOS one of the most common causes of infertility. Knowing this made Thore's pregnancy news even more exciting. She'd previously worried about her chances of getting pregnant. Her elation, however, faded when she visited the doctor for an ultrasound. In last week's episode, Thore is shown having that ultrasound. The doctor can't find any signs of a pregnancy, and she's told she had a false-positive pregnancy test. "A part of me felt relieved, but to my surprise, the biggest part of me felt disappointed," Thore wrote on her TLC blog after the episode aired. And she took to Facebook to share that rewatching the episode—which was filmed in August—was difficult, too. "This is as hard to watch as it was to go through, but I'm thankful for your support," she wrote. A false-positive pregnancy test can be devastating—especially for women who have difficulty conceiving or who are actively trying to get pregnant. Thankfully, false positives are rare, though they can happen for a handful of reasons. It's unclear what exactly led to Thore's false positive, but here we dive into the most common causes. In order to understand how a false-positive pregnancy test can happen, it's important to first know how a Continue reading >>
Ketosis During Pregnancy
So I did a urine dip stick test and my ketones were really high (the second highest) and I also had elevated protein and bilirubin. I'm only 7 weeks pregnant and I've been very nauseous but no vomiting. I really can't stomach eating very much at all and I've lost 10 lbs in the last 3 weeks! With my daughter, I also had morning sickness but lost about 12 lbs over 3 months. The only difference between this pregnancy and the last is that I'm paleo now, and I wasn't with my daughter. I'm wondering if anyone else has had this? Should I be eating the most sugary foods I can manage? I'm not sure what to do. I haven't gone to the doctor about it yet, but I'm planning on making an appointment if things don't get better in a couple of days. Continue reading >>
New producers of small ruminants often learn about pregnancy ketosis first time the hard way—with a dead dam, fetuses or both. This article explains the causes of pregnancy ketosis (a.k.a. toxemia) and more importantly—how to prevent it. Sheep and goat fetuses add 70% of their final birth weight in the last six to eight weeks of gestation. A singleton increases a dam’s nutritional requirements by 1.5 to 2 times maintenance in the last trimester. Multiple fetuses greatly increase energy demands on their mother: twins require 1.75 to 2.5 times maintenance requirements and triplets demand up to 3 times maintenance. Twins and triplets are common in some breeds of sheep and goats; quadruplets and even more are not uncommon in Boer goats, Finnsheep and Romanov sheep. Concurrent with a pregnant dam’s increasing nutritional needs, her physical capacity for feed intake is reduced by the rapid abdominal expansion of her pregnant uterus. Without managerial changes, the dam will be unable to ingest the calories needed to support herself and her fetuses, sending her into negative energy balance. Detecting a drop in blood glucose levels, her body’s regulatory systems will liberate energy from reserves stored as body fat. The release of stored energy will address her low blood glucose issues (remember the Krebs cycle?), but not without side effects: by-products of fat mobilization called ketone bodies can accumulate to toxic levels and suppress appetite. Without intervention and sometimes despite it, affected does or ewes may spiral downward in a fatal negative energy balance, taking their unborn fetuses with them. Besides multiple fetuses, health and management factors can predispose a pregnant ewe or doe to ketosis during pregnancy. For example, if there isn’t enough fee Continue reading >>
Testing For Ketones
Copyright © 1998 [email protected] All rights reserved. DISCLAIMER: The information on this website is not intended and should not be construed as medical advice. Consult your health provider. This particular web section is designed to present more than one view of a controversial subject, pro and con. It should be re-emphasized that nothing herein should be considered medical advice. Contents What are Ketones? What Causes Ketones? The Ketone Controversy Ketone Tests vs. Other Urine Tests Testing and Managing Ketones Kmom's Ketone Story Ketone References What are Ketones? Ketones are formed when your body's fat stores have to be accessed for energy. Normally, you eat food and then the body converts it to glucose/blood sugar for use as energy by your cells. Your insulin is then like a key, unlocking the door to the cell so it can access this blood sugar. In pregnancy, placental hormones make you more resistant to your own insulin (in essence 'warping' the key to the door) and make it harder to get that glucose from your blood into your cells. So while your blood remains high in blood sugar, your cells can be starving. The fetus absolutely must have energy, so if your pancreas cannot make enough insulin to overcome the hormone-caused resistance, the cells start accessing other sources of energy, like fat stores. The by-product of this is ketones. Ketones may be dangerous when pregnant, although this is controversial and still being studied and disputed. There were several studies that showed that babies exposed to a lot of ketones had learning problems and reduced IQ later in life. These have since been disputed by other studies, but just in case, everyone plays it safe during pregnancy, which is very prudent. What Causes Ketones? Ketones usually occur because you are ei Continue reading >>
Is Keto Dangerous While Pregnant, Breastfeeding, Or For Children?
A question I’ve come across seemingly increasingly in the past few months, is a variation of, is it safe for kids to eat keto, including women during pregnancy and breastfeeding? This is where a simple disambiguation between a well and poorly formulated diet should end the discussion but let’s dig a little bit deeper into the concerns themselves, studies on children, the validity thereof, what a good diet is and context. One of the applications of a well formulated ketogenic diet has been in treatment of PCOS with much success, though more research is needed. You can search for yourself to find more info on this and the specifics with lots of other blogs and anecdotes covering it out there, but between weight loss and improved hormone regulation from better food choices it’s a way to manage symptoms and issues associated with the disorder. Many women who see improvements have noted they end up with a surprise pregnancy after starting low carb. Though usually planned or at least semi-planned, you can find near endless anecdotes of despite several years of trying, a sudden ketobaby happened after a few weeks or months of low carb. Just search through //www.reddit.com/r/xxketo and /r/ketobabies for personal accounts thereof. If you’ve done prior research into keto, you should already know that improvements in endocrine function are one of the benefits with plenty of evidence to support it. So if you’ve found yourself with a surprise baby thanks to keto the next question is, can you, should you, or is it dangerous to continue while pregnant? Ketosis and Pregnancy: Thanks to Japan and low carb as a treatment for diabetes we do have some research done regarding the application of a low carb diet in pregnant mothers on ketone levels and their role. Aside from this, c Continue reading >>
Is Low Carb And Keto Safe During Pregnancy?
When Carolina Cartier discovered she was pregnant with twins this past March, she never questioned whether she would continue eating a ketogenic diet. The 31-year-old Seattle area woman had been plagued by metabolic issues literally all her life: precocious puberty at age 3; polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) by age 14; weight gain of 320 lbs (145 kg) on her 6 foot (183 cm) frame and pre-diabetes by her 20s. Her PCOS caused her ovaries to be enlarged and covered in cysts. She was told she was infertile and likely never able to have children. In August 2014, aged 28, her health was so poor that she went on medical disability from her job as a financial analyst. That first month off, however, she discovered and adopted the ketogenic diet. Between summer 2014 and February 2017, she lost 120 lbs (54 kg), experienced her first ever natural menstrual period that gradually established into a regular 28-day cycle; her blood sugar normalized and her ovaries reduced to 3.5 cm (< 1.5 inches) size. Her long-standing depression lifted. While she lost two early pregnancies at the start of 2016, likely because of poor egg quality, she knew she was getting healthier every day. Her positive pregnancy test in March 2017 was a happy surprise, as was the news soon after that she was carrying healthy twins. Except for a bout of extreme nausea and sea sickness for a week on a low-carb cruise early in this pregnancy, she has adhered to the ketogenic diet now through to 20 weeks of pregnancy and counting. She plans to continue this way of eating for the rest of her life. She feels great and looks wonderful; the twins in utero are thriving. “My life is transformed. Why would I even consider abandoning this way of eating when all of my positive health changes, and my pregnancy, I owe to this d Continue reading >>
Blog: What Causes A False Negative Pregnancy Test
always assumed that home pregnancy tests were idiot-proof. If you see a plus sign, you're pregnant. If you see a minus sign, you aren't. I know that these tests are usually accurate, but the possibility that I am experiencing a false negative test result is keeping me up at night! A false negative pregnancy test result can happen for many reasons. If you pee on the stick too early in your cycle, the test can show up as negative when in fact a little bun is already cookin' in your oven. Also, when you test after drinking a lot of liquids the result can be compromised. That's why it is best to test first thing in the morning. In my case, my cycles are just nutty. I envy women who have regular cycles of 28 to 30 days. Recently I've gone nearly six weeks without getting my period. I'm not sure when I ovulated so when I take a home pregnancy test, the timing is pretty much a guess. That's why I don't trust that minus sign that I stared at for what seemed like hours. While it is possible that the test was telling me the truth, I truly want to believe that I'm pregnant...ergo my tender emotional state and sleepless nights. Even when you don't have the possibility of a false negative pregnancy test result, the process of trying to conceive is fraught with high and low emotions. I pity the server who waited on me this morning at the diner; I think I cried for at least half of the meal. I'm sure women everywhere can relate to the desire to conceive and the heartache that comes along with finding out that it didn't happen this month. I'm still not sure what the outcome will be for me this time. Either way, I hope there's a plus sign in my near future! Have you ever experienced a false negative result? If so, when did you find out you really were expecting? Tell us below in the com Continue reading >>
Will Keto//os Cause A "false Positive" On A Drug Test?
There are no scientific studies investigating this possibility. Thus, there is currently no objective evidence to suggest that being in ketosis, whether via the ketogenic diet nor exogenous ketone supplements, could cause a “false positive” on a drug test. This question has been posed often on online forums by users consuming a ketogenic diet concerned by such a possibility. Collectively, the responses to these questions include anecdotal reports of users who were in ketosis when drug tested and experience no such problem. Thus, it does not appear to be a matter of concern. Continue reading >>
Before kidding it is called Pregnancy Toxemia. After kidding it is called Ketosis. Pregnancy Toxemia/Ketosis is caused by a build up of excess ketones in the blood (urine & milk), due to the incomplete metabolic breakdown of body fat. It occurs in a doe (before or after kidding) because of an inability to consume enough feed to meet her needs. Ketosis can be caused by either too much, or too little grain, or the wrong type of grain and also poor quality hay/forage. Before kidding, internal body fat plus large fetuses prevent the goat from taking in enough calories to support both the doe and fetuses. Because there is an urgent need for calories, the doe's body starts breaking down her body's fat reserves. But this method of metabolism is incomplete, and thus leaves ketones behind. Pregnancy Toxemia usually occurs within the last six weeks of the doe's pregnancy and is usually attributable either to underfeeding (starvation toxemia) or overfeeding grain. We also believe that increased outside stress during the final weeks of pregnancy, in conjunction with large, multiple kids can contribute to the occurrence of Pregnancy Toxemia. After kidding Ketosis results from the doe producing higher milk yields than her body can keep up with. Usually she is not being fed enough to keep up with her milk production. Signs: The doe eats less or stops eating completely. Depression Seperation from the herd The doe may be slow to get up or may lie off in a corner. Her eyes are dull. Somestimes blindness Muscle tremors & seizures Staggering Head pressing She may have swollen ankles She may grind her teeth. The doe may breathe more rapidly. The doe's breath and urine may have a fruity sweet odor. This is due to the excess ketones, which have a sweet smell. Prevention: Prevent excess body f Continue reading >>
Keto During Pregnancy
I get a ton of emails a few months after these consults telling me that they are ecstatic and are now pregnant but are wondering on what to eat now. As if this diet of REAL food would be harmful to a fetus. There are many reasons why to not add in certain foods like gluten and dairy. Many times when cravings get the best of pregnant clients and they consume these foods, the auto-immune response can result in a miscarriage. But even if the clients are committed about staying away from gluten and dairy, they often worry that too low of carbs is bad for the fetus. You will never find evidence of this, but you will read it all over the web. The information that clients read have a few flaws: 1. A huge mistake is when people and doctors compare benign dietary ketosis to diabetic ketoacidosis. You can produce ketones in a starvation state. So instead of using a well-formulated low carb diet, they starved pregnant rats to get them into ketosis. The flaw in that evidence should be obvious. 2. The last form of this “evidence” is when they sliced up the brains of rat fetuses and saturated them in ketones. What happened was that the brain cells lived but it stopped producing new brain cells. This is thought to be evidence that ketosis causes retardation. Now let’s dive into the facts. The lean human body is 74% fat and 26% protein by calories. Fats are a structural part of every human cell and the preferred fuel source of the mitochondria, the energy-burning units of each cell. A fetus naturally uses ketones before and immediately after birth. Many studies done on pregnant pigs that are placed on ketogenic diets have fetuses with “increased fetal brain weight, cell size and protein content. In the early stages of pregnancy there is an upsurge in body fat accumulation, whic Continue reading >>
Ketosis: Why Women Need To Drink Their Way Through Labour
If you labour for a long time, you could be in danger of dehydration and developing complications such as ketosis. Here’s how to keep yourself safe and healthy during birth. There's so much going on during labour that the last thing that either you, or your birth partner, may think of is getting you to drink enough. Not that sort of drink obviously. There's no ordering a cheeky mojito with your epidural but you do need to keep your intake of water up when you're giving birth if you want to stay healthy, hydrated and keep any chance of developing a nasty case of ketosis at bay. What is ketosis? Ketosis is a complication of dehydration, and a lack of carbohydrates (or glucose) for energy in the body. It is the result of the abnormal accumulation of ketone bodies in the blood stream, body tissues and urine. When does ketosis occur? Ketosis happens when the muscles have little, or no, glucose for energy to be able to function efficiently. Once the glucose supply in the blood stream is depleted, the body starts to break down its fat stores for energy instead. This produces ketones, often causing a fever, body weakness and the muscles to function inefficiently, including the uterus. In cases where the ketosis is prolonged, the condition can develop into ketoacidosis. Ketoacidosis makes the person feel unwell and can damage their body organs. This is something that can occur for people who have uncontrolled diabetes. Ketosis and labour Ketosis is a common outcome for women who experience a prolonged labour (or pre-labour), becoming dehydrated and often causing their contractions to weaken, slow or stop. This can start to happen if glycogen (or glucose) is not being replenished through eating and drinking during labour. During labour, a woman has high-energy needs and her sto Continue reading >>
Pregnancy Toxaemia And
Contents Industry Background Management Nutrition Animal Health Breeding Fibre Production Fibre Marketing Meat Production and Marketing Pasture and Weed Control Economic Analysis Tanning Skins ketosis in goats The diseases pregnancy toxaemia and ketosis can cause severe problems in goats. While the diseases are clinically different and occur during different stages of pregnancy and lactation, the basis of the disorder is essentially the same: a decrease in blood sugar levels and an increase in ketones. In ruminants, glucose is synthesised mainly from propionic acid (a volatile fatty acid produced in the rumen) and from amino acids. The amount of glucose that is absorbed directly depends on how much dietary carbohydrate escapes rumen fermentation and is digested in the small intestine. This form of glucose uptake varies with different feeds as well as their treatment. Ruminants can use products from rumen fermentation, such as volatile fatty acids, for most of their energy requirements. However, the nervous system, kidneys, mammary gland and foetus have a direct requirement for glucose. During periods of peak glucose requirement (late pregnancy and early lactation) problems may arise due to a glucose deficiency. The incidence of pregnancy toxaemia and ketosis varies with the two main types of goats. In dairy goats with a genetic potential for high milk production, ketosis may be a potential problem; in non-milch goats (Angora, Cashmere and meat) pregnancy toxaemia is more common. PREGNANCY TOXAEMIA Main causes The most important cause of pregnancy toxaemia is a decline in the plane of nutrition during the last six to eight weeks of pregnancy. This places the pregnant female in a difficult situation because the developing foetus imposes an unremitting drain on available m Continue reading >>
Ketosis (pregnancy Toxemia)
Ketosis, or Pregnancy Toxemia, in goats generally occurs within the last few weeks of pregnancy. Common symptoms include loss of appetite, spastic motion, twitching ears, edema and inability to stand. Labored breathing, coma and death can result without a quick diagnosis and effective treatment. Provide a sufficient, balanced diet with no sudden or drastic changes, high quality hay and a correct amount of grain daily, tailored to breed and condition, and at regular hours. Ensure that the doe does not have an excessive worm load and allow access to fresh water and loose minerals at all times. Exercise is also essential to build strong bodies and good appetites. At the onset of any symptoms the Keto-Nia Drench or several pumps of Nutri Drench daily can reverse the condition. More information on Ketosis / Pregnancy Toxemia: Supplies for prevention and treatment can be found here and include: Continue reading >>