I know that my recent posts have been really focused on my gestational diabetes (GD) situation, but please bear with me as I have accepted that this is a big part of my life right now. My only consolation is that my loved ones are very supportive and I have a support group of mummies with GD. Every day we would discuss what we are eating, whether it’s our prick day or cheat day, etc. We share our woes like how other people would talk about eating chocolate cake as a snack but we can only talk about eating bread or crackers as snacks. It’s a tough life with GD but it’s so much better when you know that you are not alone.
The first few days where I put back the carbohydrates in my diet was just depressing. I could be eating low GI foods but my blood sugar readings were still high. I felt I was eating for the sake of eating and hitting the daily carbohydrates intake, and not because I was hungry. There was one day where I just broke down. I didn’t think I could go on like that and still put on weight for both baby and me. In fact, I felt the stress of this diet regime would make me lose weight further.
Luckily I sought the help of my mum who is a regular diabetic. She advised me on how to control my blood sugar and enjoy my meals. Most of all, what she told me made me feel like while there are restricted foods, diabetics can still enjoy most foods and life itself.
We agreed that:
- I shouldn’t be following so strictly and blindly to the daily 14 servings of carbohydrates but to eat enough at each meal to feel full. If tea break comes round and I’m not as hungry, I shouldn’t be forcing myself to eat two servings of carbohydrates. Instead, I could eat just one serving to keep myself from feeling too hungry before dinner time which might be some time away.
- I should note how my body reacts to different foods I eat and adjust the portions at each meal accordingly. Since I noticed that eating a heavier slice of whole grain/rye bread (low GI food) keeps me full for a longer period of time and as such, my blood sugar comes down slower too, then I shouldn’t be piling on more carbohydrates. If I know that my pre-meal reading is slightly higher today, then I can control the type of fruit I eat — eat a fruit that is lower in sugar content.
- I shouldn’t get too obsessed with the readings. Frankly speaking, although some of my readings are out of the ideal range, they are not sky high like in the double digit range. More importantly, my blood sugar does come down from post-meal reading to next pre-meal reading. Of course, that does not mean I just throw caution to the wind and start binge eating on anything I like. I should still watch what I eat and have a little exercise to keep healthy, but I shouldn’t be stressing myself out over the numbers and exercising excessively in a bid to bring down the numbers.
I started to feel a lot better following this way of eating. I feel more in control of my life now and less like I’m living around the clock with just eating and exercising. I now know how to take little steps in controlling my blood sugar. Like if my post-meal reading is a little higher, then I delay my next meal by about half an hour — instead of having lunch at 12pm, I have it at 12.30pm which is still an acceptable timing and not too close to tea break.
I’ve found that it’s a lot easier to control my blood sugar with home-cooked meals which is usually clear soup and rice/pasta. However, I still eat out once in a while…on the days I feel like I’ve been cooped up at home for too long such that I’m beginning to feel like a recluse. Hur hur… I guess the days I eat out are my cheat days. I’ve taken so many readings that I know how my body reacts to outside food. The readings are usually higher. Partly also due to less walking around after the meal. I also don’t know what goes into the preparation of the food and I’m unable to control that. Like whether there’s sugar or MSG added into the soup and how much of it is added in.
Oh well. My main aim is not so much on increasing my weight now but more on increasing the weight of my little one. The next ultrasound scan is next week and hopefully by then, baby will have moved back to the average weight line or at least be much closer to it. I am also counting down to the day I hold the little one in my arms…am at 32 weeks now (8 months) so I’m not too far off from the big day. 🙂