Updated: Aug 5, 2020
If you've been diagnosed with gestation diabetes you're at increased risk of complications. Eating a nutritious diet can help keep you and your baby healthy. Follow this eating plan developed for OTD by a diabetes nutrition expert and mom.
Written by Marina Chaparro, RD, CDE, MPH
These meal plans provide 45%-50% of total carbohydrates in a 2000-calorie based diet. Please note, calorie and carbohydrate intakes need to be Individualized—they will vary depending on age, size, medication, and blood glucose response. Below are two nutrient-packed and flavorful meal plans for women with gestational diabetes.
Gestational diabetes is usually screened for in the second trimester (weeks 24 to 28)
Here's what you need to know:
Watch carbohydrate intake. You need carbs but focus on choosing high quality, high fiber sources of carbohydrates like whole grains, fruits, vegetables, and legumes
Key, nutrients: calcium, vitamin D. Your baby’s bones and teeth are developing at this stage, so it’s essential, to get plenty of these nutrients since they are the backbone of our bones.
Protein: Protein needs will increase, make sure to get enough during the day by eating 4-6 oz of lean protein such as chicken, fish low in mercury, eggs, turkey or another non-animal protein source like beans, tofu, and nuts.
Extra 350 calories
1 whole-wheat English muffin with 2 oz cooked turkey, one slice mozzarella cheese, and ¼ avocado + 8oz almond milk + ½ cup blueberries. (30 grams carbs or 2 servings of carbs)
Snack: 1 oz pistachios + 1 apple (15 g carbs—1 serving carbs)
A 6 oz portion of grilled chicken mixed kale and spinach salad with 2/3 cup of quinoa, ½ cup mixed fresh fruit (45 grams of carbs—3 servings)
Snack: 1% vanilla Greek yogurt with ½ cup blueberries (18 grams of carbs—1 serving carbs)
Enjoy ½ cup zucchini noodle pasta with 2/3 cup whole grain pasta with meat sauce and side small salad with ½ cup lower sugar frozen yogurt (45 grams of carbs—3 servings)
Snack: ½ pita bread with hummus, cucumbers, and tomatoes (15 grams—1 serving)
What you need to know:
Mornings are especially hard to maintain blood glucose in range because there is higher insulin resistance, so keeping carbs at 15 maximum 30 g might be necessary.
Harder to eat large meals. At this stage, your uterus is expanding rapidly so you will get full faster. Tip: Have six smaller meals to maintain nutrition needs but avoid reflux or uncomfortable fullness.
Key Nutrients: Omega 3, choline needed for baby’s brain growth. (eggs, chickpeas, salmon, avocado, nuts).
Additional 450 calories
2 egg veggie Omelet, 8oz almond milk, one slice toast (15 g carbs)
Snack: Carrots with hummus (5-8 g carbs)
2 chicken tacos, ¼ cup guacamole with 1oz whole grain chips + garden salad (45 grams of carbs)
Snack: 1 apple with 2 tablespoons peanut butter (20 grams of carbs)
Enjoy a 6oz portion of salmon, ⅔ cup brown rice, 1 cup grilled veggies (45-50 grams of carbs—3 servings) with ½ cup strawberries with 1 dark chocolate mini (10 g)
Snack: smoothie (1 cup almond milk, ½ banana, 1 tsp peanut butter) 15g
For more meal-planning information, check out this helpful guide from Northwestern Memorial Hospital in Chicago.
Originally published in On Track Diabetes