Mar 21, 2015

Advisable Sugar Intake During Pregnancy

The good news opens a lot of doors to splurge on foods for those unlimited cravings that prosper as you progress in pregnancy. Among the many physical and mental changes, and pregnancy symptoms that conquer the first trimester, it is the food carvings that make a woman feel on the rise. The fact that pregnancy kills almost all guilt of putting on weight and eating foods that once were barred in the diet chart, gives more than reason to why women binge and let go their diet worries. Well, ladies, we don't really mean to deprive you the happiness and feelings of being pregnant, but surely health still remains vital, even during pregnancy. And I must say that it becomes double as crucial, now that you are pregnant. Among the list of food carvings in pregnancy, the sweet cravings and sugar delights make the winners. We cannot say that the sweet treat cravings are physiological, but the fact that your body is flourishing with blood supply and hormones, the blood sugar levels are bound to drop between meals. This demands those treats for cakes and candy bars. We all know refined sugar is not good for the body, at least in excess. So how much sugar intake is healthy for an expecting mother. Let us see some facts about sugar and pregnancy, and the recommended sugar consumption during this delicate period.

Keeping Sugar Low During Pregnancy and Why

A lot of health issues are related to blood sugar levels, the most common one being diabetes. During pregnancy, the rate of sugar absorption in the blood is high. In case of excess sugar in the blood, the amount of required insulin in the pancreas is not enough to tackle the excess amount of sugar. As a result, there is a serious risk of gestational diabetes to the mother. Weight gain will also be an issue both for you and the baby too. And in a condition where the baby grows more than average as a result of high blood sugar levels of the mother, that is termed as macrosomia, and further complications can take charge. Birth complications like premature birth, cesarean section, etc., are the possible risks.

How Much Sugar Intake is Healthy During Pregnancy

The primary function of a healthy diet is to provide the body with energy and nutrients. The most healthiest forms of food that can be converted to energy are carbohydrates. Complex carbohydrates are more prone to being used as energy, and most unlikely to be stored as fats. What is advised is pregnant women should get at least 60% of the total energy required from carbohydrates. So for example, if your total calorie consumption is 2000, around 1200 should be in the form of both simple and complex carbohydrates. Simple carbs will comprise sugar and other foods, that include powdered sugar, cakes, jam, jelly, pizzas, chocolates, processed foods, etc. So whenever you plan to combine simple and complex carbohydrates in your diet, make sure you consume more of complex carbs like whole grains, vegetables and fruits, and a small portion of simple carbs. Women tend to eat more calories during pregnancy, while supporting the 'eating-for-two' statement. The fact is that even if the mother is responsible for the nutrition and energy of the baby, the recommended intake is an extra 300 calories per day only, which takes care of the baby's requirements.

There has not been a standard recommendation for sugar consumption, Every women will have a different rate of metabolism, and hence a fixed amount of sugar cannot be advised for all pregnant women. What experts suggest is that, the amount depends on the blood glucose levels of the expecting mother, and the weight gain. Women who have minimum control on the blood sugar level, should avoid intake of sugar. Whereas, women who are required to increase weight, can have a higher amount of sugar. It is most strongly advised to keep the intake minimum, otherwise, and more so when you are pregnant. You may consider consulting a doctor if you have been advised to increase your weight during pregnancy. So even if high sugar intake during pregnancy is not harmful for you, there has to be a moderate and balanced consumption.

Remember that sugar is not only sugar in a crystalline form, what we know as brown sugar, syrups, powdered sugar, etc. There are surely harmful, but Xylose, Lactose, Dextrose, Sucrose, Fructose, Glucose, Corn syrups and sweeteners are all sugars. Processed and canned foods are also high in sugar. So when you plan to cut off the sweet delight, make sure you consider all these as well. After all, the health of your baby is the most important, so even the sweetest of carvings too, is a big and a bitter no!


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