Adopting healthy diet and exercise habits during pregnancy maybe too late to ward off gestational diabetes, new research shows.
The time to make changes to prevent the diabetes that develops during pregnancy seems to be before conception, according to findings in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism.
In the study on 436 women, improving diet and exercise during pregnancy made no difference to their chances of developing gestational diabetes mellitus.
However lead author, Campbelltown Hospital endocrinologist, researcher and Western Sydney University Professor of Medicine, Professor David Simmons, says these changes would help if made ahead of falling pregnant.
“It is clearly even more important for expectant mothers to have a balanced diet and exercise regime, both for themselves and their child, before they are pregnant in order to reduce their chances of developing gestational diabetes mellitus,” says Professor Simmons.
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While adopting better habits during pregnancy could be too late to affect a woman’s chances of developing gestational diabetes, they are still positive changes for the health of her pregnancy and baby.
Professor Simmons suggests to avoid gestational diabetes women develop these healthy habits ahead of conception.
1. Be active every day
2. Sit less by reducing your sedentary time
3. Build strength, incorporating resistance moves in your workout
4. Increase the number of steps you take each day
5. Be active on weekends too
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6. Replace sugary drinks with water
7. Eat more non-starchy vegetables
8. Increase fibre consumption
9. Watch portion sizes
10. Eat protein
11. Reduce fat intake
12. Eat less carbohydrate.