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How Much Sugar Are you Eating?

(31 Posts)
DimpleHands Sun 28-Jun-15 13:41:48

I'm 20 weeks pregnant and beginning to worry that I've been eating too much sugar.

I eat fairly heathily except that I've been adding a sugary treat or two to my diet every day - about 500 calories worth. So that might be a Mars bar and an ice cream, for example.

I'm not worried that I'm not giving my baby enough nutrients - I've been eating loads of healthy food and vitamins on top of this - but does this sound like too much sugar to you? How much sugar are you eating?

And does anyone know if sugar is bad for your baby and if so how much?

NickyEds Sun 28-Jun-15 16:19:34

No it doesn't sound like too much sugar. I'm just eating normally with perhaps slightly more chocolate when i'm feeling shitty. Sugar is essential in a person's diet. I probably wouldn't be piling 3 teaspoons in tea every hour but I wouldn't do that when i wasn't pregnant either!

Appleblossom82 Sun 28-Jun-15 16:28:00

Im taking a similar approach dimple

mummyneedinganswers Sun 28-Jun-15 16:56:03

Sugar is an essential as others have posted and yes a limited amount of sugar is needed everyday in your diet but yes it is bad for baby over the limit. When you see those huge 9/10 lb babies they had too much sugar. I have gestational diabetes so have been informed all of this by my consultant. His exact words to me were you eat sugar (more than daily limit) you pass it to the baby baby gets fat and fat baby isn't a healthy baby. But essentially I don't eat sugar is biscuits or anything anyway never did as my partner is a type 1 diabetic, sugar is bad for baby as like any person u pig out on sugar you gain weight and that is a simple rule that applies to baby as well. Women need 2000 calories a day if your eating 500 calories in sugar that's a quarter of you daily calorie intake in sugar which is quite a bit. They say you stick to your normal diet until 3rd trimester when you then consume an extra 200 calories a day. I've added a picture of the eat well plate in my pregnancy book as you will see its a tiny section for foods high in sugar. I hope this helps you still need to consume sugar but at an even rate maybe like finding a sugary food with less sugar than a mars bar you could try a small bar of chocolate or a couple of biscuits

Topsy34 Sun 28-Jun-15 17:03:55

I woudl say if your diet is generally good and balanced then a mars bar or ice cream wont do you any harm

If you had 3 tablespoons of sugar on your cereal, sugar in you tea plus cake and ice cream and sweets then yes youve got a problem!!

I generally allow myself a small sweet treat a couple of times a day. I love the mini bars of mars etc.....funsize? Keep em in the fridge and they take longer to eat and satisfy the sugar need. Or odd but it works, if i buy a big bag of say maltesers i will put them in pots of 5 in the fridge and then write mon, tues etc on them. One pot a day! I would eat a whole family saize bag if i got me hands on them blush

NoArmaniNoPunani Sun 28-Jun-15 18:21:52

Sugar is one of the few pleasures we have left! Considering that alcohol has a lot of sugar in it, I reckon the extra chocolate I'm eating instead probably means I'm not having any more sugar than I did before.

Junosmum Sun 28-Jun-15 18:22:42

Not everyone that has a 9/10lb baby has eaten too much sugar. My mum is a refined-sugar free vegan and her 5 babies were all over 9lb!

mummyneedinganswers Sun 28-Jun-15 18:29:17

I was referring to gestational diabetes which can go either way you can have a huge baby or a very small but 500 calories a day in sugaris a lot

rallytog1 Sun 28-Jun-15 18:47:21

A 9lb baby has not necessarily had too much sugar. And 9lb is not that big!

mummyneedinganswers Sun 28-Jun-15 19:17:10

In pregnancy your body has to work harder to produce more insulin due to hormones so eating excess sugar in pregnancy increases the risk of gestational diabetes among other causes for it. And a 9lb baby by a GD mother is big as my consultant said my partner was a 9lb 4 baby and healthy but if you develops gd you want to avoid a 9lb baby as tmexcess sugar I npregnancy can mean that baby's bloods sugars drop a lot quicker when born due to the sugar it has had I was not saying she would have a 9lb baby but I was just saying 500 calories in sugar is a lot and even if she could reduce it slightly as obviously she needs sugar its an essential but not excessive

DimpleHands Sun 28-Jun-15 19:25:58

Hmm, OK thanks. I am going to cut back so I only eat (refined) sugar on one day a week. I have been overdoing it because, as someone above said, it's the only nice thing left available to us after the alcohol, Diet Coke, unpasteurised cheeses and coffee are taken away!

MissTwister Sun 28-Jun-15 19:28:36

I thought normal size was between 6.5-9lbs?

MissTwister Sun 28-Jun-15 19:29:35

Also I don't think it's known whether diet contributes to gestational diabetes - there's no definite evidence it does

ovumahead Sun 28-Jun-15 20:21:53

Of course diet contributes to gestational diabetes, that's why it can be controlled through changes to diet alone in many women. It's highly unlikely you'll develop GD if you don't eat excessive sugar, and you have less chance if you're not overweight in the first place. As pregnancy progresses we become more resistant to insulin so what might be OK to eat sugar wise jn the first trimester might totally overload your system in the third trimester.

ovumahead Sun 28-Jun-15 20:23:36

And also I'm not quite sure where the idea that any refined sugar is 'essential' comes from. No one needs refined sugar in their diet at all, there are more than enough natural sugars in unprocessed foods!

mummyneedinganswers Sun 28-Jun-15 20:25:12

Diet does contribute to as is why my GD IS controlled by diet an exercise like ovumahead stated. And op you don't need to cut down to once a week but you can have a few biscuits each day or a small bar of chocolate but not 500 calories a day x

ovumahead Sun 28-Jun-15 20:29:42

Best way of controlling blood sugar is just to eat a small amount of sugary food at a time. If you save it for one day a week this will overload your system on that day. Don't be hard on yourself. Just little and often. Even people with well controlled GD can eat sugary snacks every day if timed right
And you don't even have GD!

MissTwister Sun 28-Jun-15 21:26:51

Once you have GD diet can control it. It can't be said that diet CAUSES GD which is a very different thing

From Diabetes Care, whole paper is worth a read as it talks about lots of studies
'we cannot say with any certainty that any dietary factor causes GDM'

BlankXpression Sun 28-Jun-15 21:29:37

No GD here, but all I know is that I put on twice as much weight with DC1 than with DC2 by eating an extra 500 calories-ish a day of sweet stuff. I was a skinny minnie before pregnancy too...didn't think I looked that fat when I was pregnant...then the baby was born <weep>


CorBlimeyTrousers Sun 28-Jun-15 21:41:43

I also have gestational diabetes. My understanding is that if your body's insulin is working well then a 'normal' amount of dietary sugar shouldn't cause problems for the baby as your insulin response will control your blood sugar levels and therefore what the baby is exposed to. The special gestational diabetes diet is designed to maintain blood sugar levels within normal ranges and avoid exposing the baby to lots of sugar (which is definitely bad for the baby).

In my first pregnancy I didn't know I had GD. It was only picked up when I had a high urine sugar reading at 32 weeks (GD eventually diagnosed at 34 weeks after a glucose tolerance test). That means my blood sugar was really high for sugar to end up in my urine. So I was harming my baby and I didn't know it sad He was fine in the end by the way smile

I suppose I'm saying - you've probably got nothing to worry about but if you are worried it won't do you any harm to cut back on the sugary treats, while maintaining the calories and nutrients you need to grow a healthy baby. For example, whole fruits have fibre as well as sugar and are a better choice than juice and processed sugars for everyone.

And yes, as pointed out above, if you put on too much weight in pregnancy it will be a bugger to get it off again afterwards!

DimpleHands Sun 28-Jun-15 22:28:19

CorBlimeyTrousers - Can I just ask in what way sugar is bad for the baby? Is it just that it can cause weight-related issues for the baby or can it do any other damage?

mummyneedinganswers Sun 28-Jun-15 22:35:16

Yes weight related issues but like a said a few posts back a baby in the womb subjected to high amounts of sugar will struggle with blood sugar after birth as it then can cause baby's blood sugars to drop as it won't be getting the same amount of sugar as it was in the womb. It is easily fixed after birth by drips and a glucose fusions but I'm sure you would rather avoid that it doesn't mean baby will have diabetes in any way but does mean it will struggle with blood sugars in first day or so which isn't good. Also as you know sugar is bad in many other way is tooth decay ect.. Weight is the main one but just like any other person sugar affects baby the same x

mummyneedinganswers Sun 28-Jun-15 22:44:40

But those situations are in excessive amounts of sugar but your daily limit is fine. I wouldn't stress about dimples just cut back lightly. If you like your sweet treat every day don't have sugar in tea or coffee and cut down on sugary drinks you could ask your midwife to see a dietician they will give you a plan of what you can eat each day which will include sweet treats x

CorBlimeyTrousers Mon 29-Jun-15 06:41:04

Can I just ask in what way sugar is bad for the baby? Is it just that it can cause weight-related issues for the baby or can it do any other damage?

As mummyneedinganswers says, sometimes babies who have been exposed to lots of sugar in the womb can struggle to control their own blood sugars when they are born. This happened to my son - he needed formula to help but didn't need to go into the SCBU.

Also, as I understand it, poorly controlled diabetes in pregnancy can also lead to problems with the placenta in late pregancy (ie you'll be 'overdue' in terms of how well the placenta is working, earlier than other women).

But this is in situations where the mother had diabetes. And as far as you know you, you don't? You're just worried you're eating too much sugar. As above, if your insulin is working well then that will keep your own blood sugars in the normal range even if you do eat a lot of sugar (at least that's my understanding) so your baby won't be in the kind of sugary environment I'm talking about.

CorBlimeyTrousers Mon 29-Jun-15 06:44:52

Oh yes, and the babies of mums with diabetes can sometimes be big (my son wasn't) which can lead to difficulties with birth. Of course, as mentioned above, not all big babies are born to mums with diabetes (although as I understand it if you have a baby above a certain weight they should test for diabetes if you get pregnant again).

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