patient education through gestational diabetes diet teaching

Gestational diabetes diet teaching is now an integral part of managing gestational diabetes. When healthcare givers and nurses give gestational diabetes related knowledge and education to patients the best results are achieved in terms of glucose control, weight gain and general health. Therefore, teaching patients about good diabetes control has become a necessary component in gestational diabetes management.

In gestational diabetes diet teaching the importance of dietary regulation is emphasized and the patient is educated that her diabetic condition can be easily controlled through proper management of diet and exercise alone. In most cases no other treatment is found necessary. She receives guidance about the various aspects of the disease and the effects that the food she eats has on her blood sugar level. She is made to understand that as a pregnant woman her diet is going to have a profound effect on the health and well being of her baby and it is crucial that she keeps her blood glucose under control without which her own health and that of her baby stand exposed to other health risks.

She also learns that gestational diabetes is not a life long ailment. It appears in the second trimester of pregnancy and vanishes after the baby is delivered. However, a woman who has gestational diabetes runs a greater risk of getting diabetes at a later stage in life as compared to someone who has not suffered from this disease.

For keeping gestational diabetes under control it is vital to choose a healthy diet that has the right combination of high and low glycemic index foods and follow a suitable exercise regimen. This teaching goes a long way in mentally culturing the patient to be conscious about her eating habits and the dangers posed by not adhering to safety guidelines in terms of gestational diabetes management and control.

She is made to understand the benefits of eating a low fat, low cholesterol diet and the need to control blood lipids along with controlling blood glucose. Diabetics in general are prone to heart disease and a high fat diet is a sure way to invite heart related health problems.

Fats contain different type of cholesterol like HDL (high density lipoproteins), LDL (low density lipoproteins) and Triglycerides of which the right proportions in the blood are vital for protection from cardio-vascular complications. Therefore, gestational diabetes diet teaching stresses on the choice of a low cholesterol diet together with regular exercise for effective fat control.

Diabetes educators and caregivers providing gestational diabetes diet teaching offer advice about what, when and in what quantities a pregnant woman with gestational diabetes should eat for maintaining her blood glucose at healthy levels. Their recommendations include eating approx. the same amount of food every day at the same time. The total number of daily meals should ideally be three. Every meal should be followed by a snack with equal time intervals between meals and snacks. Choice food groups should be those that contain vegetables, fruits, meat and meat substitutes, milk, cottage cheese and yogurt. The optimum daily quantity would vary depending on the individual needs of the patient.

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