Gestational Diabetes Meal Planning Guide (FREE 2 week meal plan and grocery list)



What is Gestational Diabetes and How Can it Affect Pregnancy?

Gestational diabetes is raised blood sugar levels that develop during pregnancy due to your body being unable to produce enough insulin to meet your extra needs.

Insulin is the hormone required to balance and control your blood sugar levels and energy levels. It usually occurs during the second or third trimester of your pregnancy and has the potential to cause some issues both pre and post-birth.

However, the risks of developing issues such as premature birth, pre-eclampsia, polyhydramnios, induced labor, cesarean sections, or the baby developing jaundice, can be reduced through better management of diet.

If you are concerned about how to alter your diet to cope with gestational diabetes, follow this gestational diabetes nutrition guide and gestational diabetes meal plan for guidance and reassurance.

Do not hesitate to contact a healthcare professional if you have severe concerns.

Top Nutrition Tips for Eating Well With Gestational Diabetes

When managing gestational diabetes, it is important to focus on your nutrition. Aim to eat more fresh foods, healthy fats, fibers, and proteins, and limit your intake of processed foods.

It is understandable that when cravings hit you might want to reach for processed or fast foods, so keep healthy alternatives to these available around the house.

For example, keep ready cut carrot sticks with dips in your fridge, create your own healthier homemade chips, or buy some dried fruit and nuts to keep in your cupboard.

Choose Healthier Carbohydrates

The carbohydrates that we choose to eat have a large impact on our nutrition and health.

More processed and low fiber carbohydrates such as white bread, highly processed cereals, and white rice should be avoided and replaced with healthier alternatives such as whole-grain foods (brown bread, seeded loaves, brown rice, whole-grain pasta, etc.), fruit and veg, pulses (chickpeas, lentils, and beans). or unsweetened dairy products.

Be Aware of What You Snack On

It is easy to fall into the trap of eating healthy meals but ignoring your snacking habits.

Aim to keep your snacks low carb and in small portions with a wide range of options so you don’t get bored! Keep yogurts, unsalted nuts or seeds, and fruit and veg available for replacing chips, biscuits, or chocolate.

Understand the Glycaemic Index

One of the best ways to monitor your nutrition is to understand the glycemic index. The glycemic index is a measure of how quickly carbohydrates can impact your blood sugar levels.

Foods with a high glycemic index affect blood sugar levels more rapidly, such as foods high in sugars.

Other foods have a lower glycemic index. These take longer to affect your blood sugar levels, giving the body more time to process the carbohydrates.

It is advised that you should adopt a low glycemic index diet.

Meal Plan for Gestational Diabetes for 2 weeks with grocery list

The following meal plan offers ideas for 14 different breakfasts, lunches, and dinners, so you can still keep a good sense of variety in what you eat, even when you are having to be more conscious of your nutrition.

Breakfasts

There are many different options for a lower carb, lower glycemic index breakfast that is both healthy and delicious.

One food to make a staple is eggs, as you can cook them in a variety of different ways.

Also use unsweetened yogurts, natural muesli, and brown whole-grain bread to fill up in the morning.

Week 1 Breakfasts:

DAY 1:

2 poached eggs on sourdough or whole-grain toast

Fresh juice or a piece of fruit

DAY 2:

Low-fat yogurt topped with natural muesli and sliced fruit

Apple juice or chilled water

DAY 3:

Banana and oat pancakes with fresh fruit

Fresh juice

DAY 4:

Red bell pepper and ham omelet

Apple juice or fresh fruit

DAY 5:

Scrambled eggs on whole-grain toast with tomato and avocado

Orange juice or chilled water

DAY 6:

Muesli with milk or yogurt and fresh or canned fruit

Fresh juice

DAY 7:

Breakfast burrito (1 wholemeal tortilla wrap, avocado, cherry tomato, kale)

Orange juice or chilled water

Week 2 Breakfasts:

DAY 1:

Fried eggs on whole-grain toast with iceberg lettuce

Fresh juice or chilled water

DAY 2:

Cooked mushrooms, tomato, and avocado with scrambled eggs

Orange juice

DAY 3:

Breakfast muffins (made using eggs, banana, wholemeal flour, honey, yogurt, and oats)

Fruit juice

DAY 4:

Breakfast smoothie, made with fresh berries, fruit juice, and bananas

DAY 5:

Low sugar granola with oats, flaxseeds, and milk

Fresh fruit

DAY 6:

Poached eggs and avocado whole-grain bread sandwiches

Fruit juice or chilled water

DAY 7:

Low-fat yogurt topped with fresh fruit and low sugar granola

Apple juice

Essential Ingredients list:

Lunches

Week 1 Lunches:

Light lunches can be delicious, and still very filling, as long as you pay attention to the foods that you are using.

Look at different types of soups and salads that you can eat, and don’t shy away from experimenting with rice bowls and pasta.

DAY 1:

Celery soup with chunks of whole-grain bread

Fresh fruit

DAY 2:

Mixed Mediterranean salad (made with lettuce, cucumber, tomato, olives, and sprouts)

Fresh fruit

DAY 3:

Minestrone soup with whole-grain bread

Fresh fruit

DAY 4:

Avocado and sliced tomato with lettuce and rice

Fresh fruit

DAY 5:

Salmon omelet with whole-grain bread, lettuce, and sliced cucumber

DAY 6:

Sardines on toast with lettuce and sliced cucumber

Fresh fruit

DAY 7:

Chargrilled vegetables with whole-grain pasta and mixed green salad

Week 2 Lunches:

DAY 1:

Whole-grain toast with smoked salmon, light cream cheese, and avocado

Fresh fruit

DAY 2:

Roast beef and lettuce sandwich with carrot sticks, cucumber sticks, and hummus

DAY 3:

whole-grain pasta with fresh tomato sauce and a Mediterranean side salad

Fresh fruit

DAY 4:

Mushroom soup with crusty sourdough or whole-grain bread

DAY 5:

Chicken hummus bowl with avocado, onion, spinach, olives, and almonds

DAY 6:

Healthy burrito bowl with brown rice, black beans, kale, tomato, and onion

DAY 7:

Chicken noodle salad – made with onion, wholemeal noodles. sugar snap peas. shredded carrots, unsalted cashews, and chicken

Essential Ingredients List:

Dinners

There are many healthy, protein-based dinners out there for you to try.

For an extra healthy touch, serve some of your meals with a green salad, with ingredients such as lettuce, kale, cucumber, carrot, or olives for a Mediterranean touch.

Week 1 Dinners:

DAY 1:

Grilled chicken breast with sweet potato, spinach, and sugar snap peas

DAY 2:

Vegetable stir fry with whole-grain noodles

DAY 3:

Lamb roast with chargrilled garlic, sweet potato mash, and seasonal roast vegetables

DAY 4:

Pork fillet with roasted pears and Whole-grain rice and fresh vegetables

DAY 5:

Lasagne with a green side salad

DAY 6:

Cauliflower base pizza with tomato sauce and mozzarella cheese

DAY 7:

Whole-grain spaghetti with bolognese sauce

Week 2 Dinners:

DAY 1:

Coconut and squash Indian dhansak, made with butternut squash, onions, tomato, coconut milk, lentils, and coconut yogurt

DAY 2:

Chicken pasta bake with a green salad

DAY 3:

Healthy katsu chicken, made with chicken coated in finely chopped flaked almonds and oven-baked as opposed to fried, served with a green salad.

DAY 4:

Feta and kale loaded sweet potato topped with pumpkin seeds

DAY 5:

Chicken and lemon skewers in whole-grain flatbreads

DAY 6:

Healthy chili con carne, made with chunks of stewing beef and served with whole-grain rice

DAY 7:

Miso wholemeal noodles with vegetables and fried eggs

Essential Ingredients List:

Snacks

Some ideas for healthy snack replacements are:

  • Carrot or cucumber sticks and low-fat content hummus
  • Low-fat yogurt topped with fresh fruit
  • Sugar snap peas
  • Toasted whole-grain pita bread slices with low-fat content hummus or yogurt dip
  • Rice cakes with low-fat cream cheese and cucumber slices
  • Boiled eggs
  • Oat pancakes served with fresh fruit

These meals and snacks are in many cases more protein-based – this is due to the fact that proteins have little to no carb content, meaning that they will not affect your blood sugar levels in the same way as carbohydrates.

The carbohydrates that are included in these meals and snacks are largely whole-grain carbs, which have a lower glycemic index.

This means that the effect that they have on blood sugar levels is more gradual rather than sudden, allowing your body more time to cope with the carbohydrates as they enter the body.

Try some of these recipes and find out which suit your lifestyle and eating habits best.

Do not feel pressured to eat food that you do not enjoy – there are many different food options available to you, and there will always be something that you can enjoy.

Gestational Diabetes Meal Planning Guide (FREE 2 week meal plan and grocery list)

Jennifer LoVerde

Hey there! Jennifer here, and I run this website. I am a mommy to one amazing little boy + Childcare and development professional (10+ yrs). I created this website to provide useful information about pregnancy and newborn care, & inspire you to live your best mom life!

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