Home Health Pregnancy Expert Talk: An OB/GYN Shares 5 Tips To Lower Blood Sugar Naturally...

Expert Talk: An OB/GYN Shares 5 Tips To Lower Blood Sugar Naturally During Pregnancy


Controlling blood glucose levels is essential for the good health and long life of any person. It becomes even more important during pregnancy, when complications related to blood sugar can compromise both the mother and unborn child’s health.

When a woman is pregnant, her body undergoes multiple physical changes to accommodate the proper growth and development of the foetus. That is why, to ensure the well-being of the unborn baby and the mother, it’s ideal to have regular blood sugar readings throughout a woman’s pregnancy.

TC46 connected with Dr. Sonamm Tiwari, Consultant-Obstetrics & Gynecology, Hiranandani Hospital, Vashi, to talk about simple tips that can lower blood sugar naturally during pregnancy. 

Why is maintaining proper blood sugar levels significant for a pregnant woman? 

Pregnancy presents a unique physiological and metabolic situation for women, and blood glucose control is often compromised due to physical & hormonal changes. Although natural fluctuations in blood glucose can occur, these must be controlled so that the maternal health, including that of the baby, is unaffected.

Firstly, blood glucose levels will likely decrease in the early stages of pregnancy due to increased maternal blood volume and glucose utilization by the foetus. Secondly, dramatic changes in insulin sensitivity during pregnancy have been reported due to changing concentrations of hormones from the placenta. Understanding these likely changes in blood glucose levels can help women with or without diabetes better prepare for a healthy pregnancy.

Gestational Diabetes is a form of Diabetes that occurs for the first time in a pregnant woman who did not have Diabetes before becoming pregnant. The most common time to test for this condition is between 24 and 28 weeks of pregnancy. Even if a woman has been diagnosed with Gestational Diabetes, there are ways to manage this condition, as leaving it untreated can lead to long-term consequences.

For the baby, high blood sugar levels can increase the risk of miscarriage, premature birth, breathing problems, low blood sugar at birth and high birth weight, making delivery difficult or even dangerous. On the other hand, for the mother, Gestational Diabetes and high blood glucose levels during pregnancy increase the risk of Hypertension, Preeclampsia, caesarean delivery, and developing type 2 Diabetes even after she gives birth.

What Are Some Simple Ways To Control Blood Sugar Levels During Pregnancy? 

Weight gain during pregnancy is inevitable. Understanding the healthy weight gain ratio is essential, especially if the woman is obese or has any specific comorbidities. It is vital to know that the weight a woman gains during pregnancy can affect both short and long-term health outcomes for both mother and the baby.

Below are some practical ways to lower blood pressure levels during pregnancy.

1. Follow A Healthy Diet 

Dietary strategies that help balance blood sugar levels must include a three-pronged approach. These include focusing on consuming foods containing high-fibre carbohydrates, eating a balanced meal, and avoiding sugar-sweetened beverages. Fibre curbs the rate of digestion and absorption of carbohydrates, which helps control the release and rise of blood sugar levels.

During pregnancy, it is highly recommended that meals are planned so that essential nutrients reach the growing foetus. Most of a pregnant woman’s meal must include non-starchy vegetables (should be half the plate), lean protein and high-fibre carbohydrates (both must comprise one-fourth of the plate). Finally, it is essential to include a small portion of unsaturated fats like Avocados, Olives, nuts, and seeds while limiting or avoiding sugar-sweetened beverages and sodas.

Some other diet tips that should be kept in mind include:

  • Ensure you eat regular meals, including three typical meals and 2–3 snacks daily.
  • Breakfast is important. Dry cereals, fruits and milk are not the best choices for breakfast because they are digested very quickly and can raise blood sugar levels rapidly. A breakfast of whole grains and a protein-packed meal is usually the best choice.
  • Measure your portions of starchy foods.
  • One small serving of fruit is ideal for everyday consumption. Fruits are nutritious because they contain natural sugars. A serving of fruit is a small piece of fruit, half a large fruit, or about one cup of mixed fruit.
  • Eat more fiber-rich food items.
  • Avoid fruit juice and sugary drinks.
  • Strictly limit sweets and desserts, although artificial sweeteners like Aspartame, Acesulfame K, Sucralose, and Stevia are considered safe during pregnancy.
  • Watch out for sugary alcohol in sugar-free foods. These products may be labelled “sugar-free” but may contain the same amount of carbohydrates as versions made with regular sugar. Some examples of sugar alcohols include Mannitol, Maltitol, Sorbitol, Xylitol, Isomaltose and Hydrogenated Starch Hydrolysate.

2. Get Moving By Exercising Regularly

Physical activities are vital in delaying or managing blood sugar and blood pressure. According to studies, blood sugar levels are reduced 24 hours after exercise, especially during aerobic and resistance-based activities. Regular exercise also improves a person’s heart’s functioning and breathing capability. Over time, it will help the heart become more robust and pump with less effort, eventually reducing pressure on the arteries and lowering blood pressure. 

It is best to exercise at least five days a week for at least 30 minutes at moderate intensity. Also, a word of advice: whether you are pregnant or not, it’s wise to talk to your doctor at the start of any new exercise plan to avoid unnecessary complications. If you cannot go to the gym, you can also opt for other forms of exercise like brisk walks, dancing with friends, group yoga classes, or even swimming.

3. Manage Stress

Stress can affect blood sugar levels through the action of Glucocorticoid hormones. However, studies have shown that exercise, relaxation, and breathing practices can improve blood sugar control during stressful periods.

4. Get Sufficient Quality Sleep

Sleep deprivation can increase the risk of uncontrolled blood sugar and high blood pressure. Poor sleep can affect blood glucose levels and insulin sensitivity during pregnancy through its interaction with stress, making it a fatal concoction. Some tips for getting good sleep include:

  • Have a regular sleep schedule.
  • Exercising during the day and not at night gives your body sufficient time to relax before sleeping.
  • Ensure you sleep in a calm and darkened room, and more importantly, leave all digital devices at the door.
  • Avoid drinking caffeine, but if you want to consume it, do so at least three hours before bedtime.

5. Do Not Smoke Or Drink Alcohol 

There is no doubt that smoking and alcohol consumption are hazardous during pregnancy, as they can have long-lasting consequences. It is highly recommended that you quit such habits so that you can have a healthy pregnancy with minimal complications.

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