Nutrition and Diabetes
A meal plan gives guidelines for the types and amounts of food a person should eat for each meal and snack. Most pregnant women will require a meal plan which includes three main meals (breakfast, lunch and dinner) and 3 snacks (mid-morning, mid-afternoon and at bedtime). See below for sample meal plans.
Different foods affect blood sugar in different ways. Foods high in carbohydrates (carbs) tend to raise blood sugar more than other foods. These are the body's main source of energy. One kind of carb is sugar, found in foods such as fruit, milk and sweets. Another kind is starch, found in foods such as bread, rice, pasta and potatoes. Click here for more information on carbohydrate counting.
- Eat 3 small meals and 3 snacks every day. This will enable improved blood sugar results.
- Follow the food plan recommended by a registered dietitian or diabetes educator (see examples below).
- Limit the carbohydrates [starch, fruit, milk] eaten according to the meal plan. Concentrated sweets such as cake, cookies, candy, regular soda and kool-aid should be avoided. The use of Nutrasweet (aspartame) is safe in pregnancy and should be the substitute for sugar.
- Always read labels on food containers
- select foods that are low in sugar [< 5gm per serving]. Each serving of milk or fruit has 11-15 gm of sugar.
- low in fat [< 3 gm per serving]
- high in fiber [> 3 gm per serving] e.g. breads, cereals
- lower in salt [< 200 mg per serving]
- Wait at least 2 to 3 hours between all meals and snacks.
- DO NOT SKIP SNACKS, these are a very important part of the diet plan and will help you keep blood sugars at a normal range
SAMPLE MEAL PLAN
1800-2000 calorie diet *
Breakfast 08:00 AM
AM Snack 10:00 AM
Lunch 12:00 Noon
PM Snack 03:00 PM
Dinner 06:00 PM
Bedtime Snack 09:00 PM