- Everything you need to know about Gestational Diabetes
Today we speak to diabetes specialist midwife Paula Lavandeira founder of Nurtured Munchkin on everything you need to know about Gestational Diabetes. Paula answers all your questions on What is Gestational Diabetes When will Gestational Diabetes be diagnosed? What the signs and symptoms of Gestational Diabetes are and having a normal pregnancy after being diagnosed with Gestational Diabetes.
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Carla: [00:00:00] Hello and welcome to My Bump 2 Baby Expert podcast, where we bring experts from all over the UK. To answer your questions on everything, pregnancy to preschool.
[00:00:29] Today we are speaking to expert Paula Lavandeira, and she is going to be talking to us all about gestational diabetes during pregnancy. I hope you enjoy this episode.
[00:00:50] Hello, and welcome to My bump 2 Baby Expert Podcast. Today. I am joined with Paula Lavandeira. From NurturedMunchkin. And she will be talking all around gestational diabetes. Hi Paula. How are you?
Paula: [00:01:09] Hi. Thank you very much. Thank you for having me.
Carla: [00:01:12] Oh, no problem at all. This is a subject that I know a lot of parents are worried about. Um, and you know, it’s definitely something that we could do, we’ve got quite a few questions on for you today, so, so Paula, could you start by telling us what gestational diabetes?
Paula: [00:01:30] So this is when you get pregnant and you have [??] or too much sugar in your blood stream, and this is caused because of the placenta, some hormones of the placenta blocking the insulin that you produce. And that’s what happen. So it’s a hormonal thing.
Carla: [00:01:47] Wow. Gosh, I never knew that. Yeah. When can gestational diabetes be diagnosed then?
Paula: [00:01:54] So it’s more common at the end of the pregnancy around 28 weeks. But if you had it before, it’s more likely that you might have it earlier in pregnancy. It’s like the body remember and say, Oh, I’m not going through that again and just give up. So, but normally it’s between 24, 28. And then some people, if they manage the body to work hard, they don’t show up any symptoms until 37 weeks, 36 weeks.
Carla: [00:02:21] Wow. Wow. That’s that’s crazy. Right. Okay. So that’s, so what are the signs and symptoms of gestational diabetes, then please Paula?
Paula: [00:02:32] So some people might not have any symptoms at all. And they come to the clinic to do the, they, they have, um, when they’re booked, they’re going to ask you your history. So we have some risk factors. And if you tick these risk factors, they send you later on appointment to be tested for gestational diabetes, but other people might not be in that category. So we assume it’s low risk. And then later in pregnancy they might show up. It seems like, um, Thirsty all the time, despite drinking, urinating, you know, like going to toilet so often, sometimes it’s the belly grows too much, all of a sudden. And when they do a scan to take the baby can have a big belly. That I call Buddha bellies babies.I don’t like to insult babies, its Buddha belly babies. It’s more nicer. And, um, Sometimes it’s a lot of fluid around the baby, so that the most common signs that we can kind of guess, these lady might have gestational diabetes.
Carla: [00:03:31] So is that around the 20 weeks scan then they’d kind of get a bit of an idea about that. Or could it be earlier on the 12 week scan?
Paula: [00:03:38] It’s later. No it’s normally later, but yeah, some people, if they have history, strong history in the family, when they come to 20 weeks has come, we can see that already. The babies seem that big size. Um, and we might need to book them in for an appointment. Yeah.
Carla: [00:03:55] Okay. Can I have a normal pregnancy after a diagnosis?
Paula: [00:04:01] Yes. Well, that’s the aim. That’s my role here too. As a midwife, I want to normalize everything. But, this doesn’t mean that you’re ill. It’s just part of the process. It’s only a tiny bit of the rest of the pregnancy. In most of the cases when women maybe later on induce, it’s not just diabetes, it’s something else. So well treated and well managed can give you a very good experience anyway.
Carla: [00:04:26] Yeah, that makes sense. So just, um, another question, Paula is, is the baby more likely to come early from gestational diabetes?
Paula: [00:04:37] It’s going to depend if it’s well controlled, if they’re well control, we normally just let the body do their own thing. It’s also going to depend on if the mum is on medication. So then if she’s on insulin, normally we offer induction early because of the problems that can have at the end of the pregnancy with the managing of those sugar levels is a bit complicated, but once the mums go through that road we always explain and they understand. But yeah, sometimes it might be the size of the baby the body says, we’re ready, and deliver early. But i’ve got lots of clients at the moment that are[??] and so already cooked the baby. So it’s never a rule for that each babies different each pregnancy is different.
Carla: [00:05:23] Yeah, absolutely. Yeah. I can agree with you there, um, so once the babies, born is there any implications after birth?
Paula: [00:05:31] Yes. And that’s why sometimes we, we come across a bit bossy with the mum’s like, come on, we need to control that. Even if it’s like, you know, three weeks left. It’s because once, do you imagine yourself eating lots of sugar and they’re given to you a lot of caffeine, for example, in your case, and, um, you go, and so all of a sudden they take him from you, you have this kind of way throw syndromes, isn’t it like, Oh my God, where is my sugar? So in the babies, the same, it’s an environment with the levels of the sugars in the mum’s blood is high. So the baby gets that, baby’s producing insulin in a high level. So once the baby’s born, this insulin levels is still there very high, but it’s not food. So it’s not a cord where it comes, so that babies have a lot of hypos.
[00:06:19] So it means that their sugar levels dropped. And that’s what worries us as a professional. So we encourage the mum. We can control that very easily by expressing milk, for example, or be sure that the mums have straight away skin to skin with the baby and stimulates feeding quite soon. And if the mum doesn’t want to breastfeed, it’s fine, give a bottle, no problem, just feed the baby. And then this is the problem also that the baby might be more prone to have, um, um, high bilirubin level. So they get the [??] They get really, really yellow.
Carla: [00:06:58] Is that like jaundice?
Paula: [00:07:02] Yeah the jaundice, thats what we call jaundice. Yeah, so that, well, we always say we don’t want the babies to go to special care, even if it’s from one day, if we can avoid this. So that’s very important that the mums try their best to keep their the levels quite, quite normal. To avoid that on the baby. And then we don’t have very clear evidence, but they say that it’s more likely that the baby from born from mums with gestational diabetes are more prone to, um, to develop obesity in the future. But it’s not to clear. We need to wait until usually until see how many studies they can do with people from that.
Carla: [00:07:42] So if you’ve had it once, I know you mentioned this earlier, are you guaranteed to get it again or does it sometimes not happen the next time?
Paula: [00:07:49] It’s very rare you don’t have it and it’s all on diet control. Um, it might be that they got kind of diabetes because of the food that we’re eating rather than having it because of the hormones, let’s say. But yeah, it’s more common that you, you, you have it again. Um, and is more some cases, especially if you end up in the root of insulin that the symptoms appear early in the second pregnancy.
Carla: [00:08:16] Okay. And if you are diabetic, does that mean you’d have gestational diabetes or is that just totally different?
Paula: [00:08:25] No, if you, if you are pre existing, so if you have diabetes before getting pregnant, its either type one or type two. So the type one is the ones who, um, is they’d been born with, uh, um, they cannot produce insulin. Type two is normally people, it could be diet due to the lifestyle or, you know, they, they, they have, they might have insulin resistance, um, and they can still get pregnant and have babies. They need to monitor. Anyway, gestational diabetes is when you’re pregnant and as soon as the placenta is out, As I say, always, normally that the diabetes go with them. However, it’s very important. It’s a 50, 50 chance is for this mums diagnosis with diabetes, gestational diabetes to have type two or develop type two within five years. So it’s something that they don’t pay too much attention, but it’s very important and it’s not due to how, how well you eat or, kind of how active you are, if it’s kind of like it’s already in your genes and it’s more likely that you can have it, not in all the cases, but yeah. It’s 50 50chances now.
Carla: [00:09:40] Okay. And is there anything that anyone could do to like any foods that they could eat to help with this gestational diabetes or. I know, obviously it is a hormone, but what, what do you advise for nutrition wise?
Paula: [00:09:54] Yeah, it’s important that the food will affect. So what we focus is in the carbs. So we say, and I say to everyone, as soon as they get pregnant or they try to get pregnant to reduce as much as they can, all the refined sugar, we live now in our society where a society where we, um, have everything pre-made. We don’t cook from scratch. So we don’t normally have all these nutrients. It comes all with preservative, something. So that is very easy to digest. So the sugar levels go very high, very quickly. And we put in our bodies to the pancreas. Thats the one who produced the insulin into hard work, like okay. Producing very hard. So I would say from the very beginning, yes. Stop eating or reduce as much as you can. All the candies, the sweets, the cakes. I know that they’re delicious, but instead don’t have it everyday. Use it as a treat.
Carla: [00:10:46] Like a weekend treat or something like that?
Paula: [00:10:49] Yeah exactly. All, all with moderation or we say it’s like everything in moderation, but yeah, definitely. I also look at the portions, the carbs should be a quarter of the plate, not half of the plate or the whole plate. So when we eat the full plate of spaghetti or pasta, actually, should be more vegetables in there than pasta to be keeping the readings okay. Drink plenty of water. Mmm. Yeah. These kinds of things always balance. I say that everybody’s should go for that kind of diet.
Carla: [00:11:26] Yeah. No, that absolutely. That’s brilliant. I mean, that’s, that’s really informative. So thank you so much for sharing that information. Is there anything else that you feel you could add or that we’ve missed?
Paula: [00:11:38] Well, I say that don’t feel afraid for that. When did you get diagnosed with gestational diabetes. You think, Oh my God, they taking everything from me now. And it’s not, you own it. Its your pregnancy, its your experience. So I will say, take responsibility of that. So what is your, I always tell them, what is your intention here? What type of birth do you want? So fight for it. So follow these directions, do your best. And you might, mostly I guarantee that you can get a good experience at the end. Is sometimes, I mean, all implements that you never know who’s going to end up. But at least, you can ensure that you take responsibility and the control of your own daily basics on your life rather than, Oh, they don’t allow me this. I don’t like that. So I will say get informed, understand how this happen, understand about what foods affect you in a different way, because each person is different. Each person is different. Isn’t what you eat he might work for you. And then I try and it’s totally a different effect on me. So, um, it’s a learning process. I will say don’t be afraid, but just get the information you need. Yeah. And the support that you need.
Carla: [00:12:51] Absolutely. No, that’s fantastic. So Paula, where can people find you and find a bit more about what you offer?
Paula: [00:12:59] So I got, um, my, my own company is called www.nuturedmunchkin.co.uk. And, um, yeah, they can find information in there around, uh, work shops about diabetes and other things as well. Um, I’m always very into, um, antenatal and postnatal classes because I want the parents to be prepared for everything. And also they can find me on Instagram if they want @nurturedmunchkin_hypnobirthing. If they want give information in there.
Carla: [00:13:30] Excellent. Excellent. So, um, what we’ll do is we’ll put, um, Paula’s links in the show notes, um, and you’ll be able to find her there. Um, thank you so much, Paula. That was amazing. Really, really interesting, actually. So thank you.
Paula: [00:13:45] My pleasure.
Carla: [00:13:48] Thank you for listening to My Bump 2 Babies Expert podcast. If you would like to find help and support from experts in your local area, head over to www.mybump2baby.com and you will also be able to find local pregnancy to preschool groups, classes, businesses, and services in your local area.
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