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Gestational diabetes - what snacks in labour?

(13 Posts)
mrsgboring Tue 14-Apr-09 13:59:39

I've only been on the GD regime 2 weeks so it's all pretty new to me. Am managing good control through diet, although it's getting harder as the bland food is bringing back my morning sickness.

I'm being induced on Monday (for other reasons - it's been a complex pregnancy), and last time round I definitely wanted to eat during labour. I think I will have to anyway to keep my sugars in the 4-7 range required (normally go hypo quite easily).

What kind of snacks should I plan? I've only been doing the diet for a short while, so have a repertoire of 3 snacks - banana and nuts, oatcake with peanut butter, plain yoghurt with oatcake [blech]. Will the same snacks work in labour, or with the higher energy demands, will I want more, and if so what sort of thing?

What did you eat, and how did you find controlling sugars during labour generally?


mrsgboring Tue 14-Apr-09 14:47:04

I just want to eat Jammie Dodgers (NOW!) I take it this isn't going to work?

standanddeliver Tue 14-Apr-09 17:08:37

If you are being induced they will probably suggest that you don't eat at all in active labour. I'd check if I was you. They might suggest iv glucose instead.

I had gd and had a homebirth. I ate bananas and cereal bars in labour. Oatcakes are great!

During my second homebirth I transferred in to hospital. Arrived there eating a cereal bar. They weren't happy about me eating but no one snatched it out of my hand either.

Good luck!

mrsgboring Tue 14-Apr-09 17:32:17

Thanks, standanddeliver. They let me eat last time and was induced at 38 weeks just the same. I'm pretty sure they did anyhow <checks memory, finds it hazy>

Bananas are good, but don't know if I'd dare have cereal bars (that's what I think I ate last time). Did you have GD? Could you have them normally? I'm pretty sure they'd send my sugars well out of the 7 range.

Oatcakes in theory great, but everything savoury makes me want to throw up. Except nuts, which DH is allergic to, so it's making me uneasy how much I'm relying on them now.

standanddeliver Tue 14-Apr-09 22:14:40

Your body works so hard in labour that you're not going to be metabolising sugar in the same way as you are normally.

mrsgboring Wed 15-Apr-09 08:54:41

That's what I figured. I have fairly short 5hoursish labours (please God - never had a big baby before though!) so not much room for experimentation. But not long to get through either.

Have started fantasising about muesli FGS - I have to get this baby out!

EyeballsintheSky Wed 15-Apr-09 08:58:44

Don't wish to be flippant (I had GD as well but was too spaced out to eat) but does it matter? Is anything you do at that stage going to cause any harm? Surely you could mainline mars bars and a) it would cause the baby no harm as s/he is exiting and b) as previously said, your body will be in overdrive anyway. I wouldn't have thought anything could hurt at that stage. Except for labour obv...

I'd eat whatever you feel like eating.

mrsgboring Wed 15-Apr-09 09:01:35

If your BS goes too high, it triggers an insulin response in the baby that make its BS go too low when it's born. If it's too low, they take the baby away and stuff it full of formula if you're not careful. (worst case scenario obviously - of course what will happen is trained professionals consult the parents on whether to provide some donor breast milk to bring the baby's BSs back up hmm)

EyeballsintheSky Wed 15-Apr-09 09:07:54

I know about the low BS in baby as what you've described is exactly what happened to dd. Had no idea it was linked to high BS in me though. Shows how well informed I was at the time then hmm. OK, ignore what I said! blush

mrsgboring Wed 15-Apr-09 09:17:17

Eyeballs, they have told me sweet FA. Left to my own devices, following their barmy before meals testing regime I would have been routinely shooting my levels up to nearly 10 every morning without knowing about it. In order to find out this, I had to arrange my own prescription for testing sticks, buy my own sharps and spend a lot of time on the Internet getting proper info, as well as doing several more tests than the 6 pointless ones a day they wanted.

My care was fantastic up to this point, but I feel like I've been left totally in the lurch with the GD (just a quick demo of the BS testing regime, wrong in several particulars, and a leaflet aimed at people with type 2, saying I can have 2-3 units of alcohol a week and that cake, golden syrup etc. contains, you know, sugar and I probably can't have too much of it)

So it doesn't surprise me at all that they didn't inform you about what you should or shouldn't have been doing in labour, or what the risks were.

angry angry angry angry angry

Juls2013 Tue 23-Apr-13 22:38:52

Hiya, this is my second pregnancy (32wks) with GD, the 1st I managed to control with diet (born 7lb 3oz)and this one my body has given up and I am both diet controlled and inject I feel I am becoming a bit of an expert on this godforsaken curse in pregnancy. I know they tell you sweet FA so you have to figure it out yourself. I have a background of training nurses on diabetes so it was ironic when I got this myself. You are right, your diet is shocking and it makes you sick, you can't eat the carbs you crave as it will send you high and I laughed at the dietician in the hospital who told me to try scones when asked what type of snacks I could eat.(do not try scones!!) Remember, their are 2 ways to make your blood sugar go up. 1. Eating something too high in sugar / carbs and 2. Eating too much of what you takes the willpower of steel ( well... A mum wanting to give birth to a healthy, non-hypo baby) but if you eat little and often your blood sugar will remain constant and within limits. For example, sandwiches (egg, tuna, meat are the best) but eat half (one slice of bread) at lunchtime and the other half 1hr plus later. Crisps, just a handful now, just a handful 1hr plus later Pork pies, scotch eggs both are low in sugar. Half a weetabix with whole milk now, half about 1 hr later.( whole milk slows the absorption of sugar better than skimmed or semi skimmed cos of the fat content). You will need so much willpower but if you eat every 1-2 hours you will not/ should not be too hungry. Try the slow release breakfast biscuits ( are they called Brevita?) choose the ones lowest in sugar but only eat half now half later. These eg.s should keep your energy up and your blood sugars down! PS in the hospital, their is no point the nurses taking random blood sugars. They only go up when you eat, so only let them test you 1hr after eating just like you have to now. Hope some of this rant helps!! Good luck.

EnglishGirlApproximately Tue 23-Apr-13 22:46:02

If you go on the diabetes UK website theres a recipe for sugar free flapjacks (pureed dates replace the sugar -much nicer than it sounds!). I ate these when my need for sweet things became unbearable during the last few weeks of pregnancy. Also had spicy popcorn, oatcakes and very dark chocolate.

StiffyByng Thu 25-Apr-13 09:23:14

Interested in this thread, thanks for posting. I have GD and am planning a homebirth. I am diet controlled and am 37+6 now. The clinic discharged me last week very happy with my levels and handed me a sheet for insulin if my levels in labour went above 7, saying cheerily 'you won't need this and anyway you'll be at home'. My community midwives say their guidance is levels below 10 during labour, not 7, but also are supremely unconcerned by the whole thing. So the impression I get is that no one is too fussed at all! I was thinking of making my own ice lollies with sugar free stuff as last time round I found lemonade lollies excellent. I also ate hummous and pitta bread so was going to substitute oatcakes (blessed oatcakes that I won't be eating for a while after this) but that's no use if you don't want savoury.

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