Gestational diabetes definition and facts
Risk factors for gestational diabetes include
a history of gestational diabetes in a previous pregnancy,
There are typically no noticeable signs or symptoms associated with gestational diabetes.
Gestational diabetes can cause the fetus to be larger than normal. Delivery of the baby may be more complicated as a result. The baby is also at risk for developing low blood glucose (hypoglycemia) immediately after birth.
Following a nutrition plan is the typical treatment for gestational diabetes.
Maintaining a healthy weight and following a healthy eating plan may be able to help prevent or minimize the risks of gestational diabetes.
Women with gestational diabetes have an increased risk of developing type 2 diabetes after the pregnancy
What is gestational diabetes?
Gestational diabetes is diabetes, or high blood sugar levels, that develops during pregnancy. It occurs in about 4% of all pregnancies. It is usually diagnosed in the later stages of pregnancy and often occurs in women who have no prior history of diabetes.
What causes gestational diabetes?
Gestational diabetes is thought to arise because the many changes, hormonal and otherwise, that occur in the body during pregnancy predispose some women to become resistant to insulin. Insulin is a hormone made by specialized cells in the pancreas that allows the body to effectively metabolize glucose for later usage as fuel (energy). When levels of insulin are low, or the body cannot effectively use insulin (i.e., insulin resistance), blood glucose levels rise.
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