Tag: eggs

Gestational diabetes in Moms-to-be

Gestational diabetes in Moms-to-be

Query from a concerned mom-to-be:

“I am 12 weeks pregnant and my father and all his siblings have Diabetes, so I am worried about getting gestational diabetes. What changes do I make to avoid getting Gestational Diabetes?”

Diabetes is a common condition afflicted to many. But Gestational Diabetes may be a new term to many. In simple words, it means developing high blood sugars during pregnancy. It is said to commonly affect 3-10% of pregnancies. This can either mean undetected diabetes and or diabetes developed during pregnancy.

What are the risk factors for Gestational Diabetes?

  • Family history of Type 2 diabetes or Gestational diabetes.
  • Being overweight,obese before and during pregnancy or excess weight gain during pregnancy
  • Maternal age-Pregnancies above 35 years of age.
  • Excessive stress
  • Wrong eating habits during pregnancy

It can also occur due to hormonal changes that occur in a woman during pregnancy.

Now how can you prevent GD and enjoy a safe pregnancy?

It has always been advised to plan a pregnancy as one can get physically as well as mentally ready. Physically, healthy weight changes if overweight or obese and changes in eating habits are always advised. But as most of the pregnancies are unplanned, women after 5-6 months of pregnancy are asked to under go a Glucose Tolerance Test (GTT).

If the GTT comes high, then a lot of risk factors need to be altered.

Although weight loss is strictly prohibited, weight maintenance is required. A healthy diet and a regular exercise routine is very important.

The main concern in GD are the carbohydrates as the have the greatest impact on blood sugar. Hence it is very important to eat the same amount of carbohydrates in every meal along with some protein and fat. A healthy diet should contain whole grains such as brown rice, whole wheat products, ragi, bajra, jowar, oats and pulses and legumes such as bengal gram (channa), Kidney beans (rajma), green gram(moong), sprouts etc.

Include plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables. Avoid refined sugars such as maida, fruit juices and lower your intake of sugar and fat. Completely avoid junk food such as hamburgers, pizzas, chips, cookies, coke which are completely unhealthy for your blood sugars and bad for your baby.

Eat enough protein by including milk and milk products and other protein sources such as lean meat like chicken, eggs and fish. Refer to what not to eat during pregnancy for further information.

Increase your calcium intake by including soya milk, low fat milk, cheese(yes, it is allowed), peanut butter, green leafy vegetables etc.

Iron too is very crucial. Hence include eggs, lean meat, fish and green leafy vegetables.

A few guidelines for healthy eating during GD:

  • Eat 3 small meals and 2-3 snacks in between. Do not skip meals. Try to eat on time as much as possible. This will prevent sugar spikes.
  • Completely avoid alcohol. No amount of alcohol is safe.
  • Caffeine too should be limitted. Stick to not more than 2 cups of coffee per day.
  • Do not try to “diet” or try to eat very less, to bring about changes in your weight and blood sugars.
  • Determine your weight gain with your doctor. He/She will help you with your weight gain in regard to your pre-pregnancy weight.
  • Work out a diet plan with a competant dietitian who will help you to eat healthy.
  • Eat a variety of foods.
  • Keep a record of your food intake.

Last but not the least. Exercise!!!! Walking is the safest exercise, so walk for at-least 30 minutes daily. A healthy diet and regular exercise can do wonders to you and to your baby.

How can you increase your child’s concentration and memory?

How can you increase your child’s concentration and memory?

Have you seen your child losing concentration quite often, forgetting trivial things very easily? Then your child’s memory must be suffering.

The brain requires adequate energy to function well and this can be provided with good nourishment through good food intake and regular physical activity. When your child is involved in strenuous mental activities such as exam preparations, planning for extra curricular activities, then your child will require extra energy.

Along with regular intake of healthy food, there are a few main foods which you need to include which will provide minerals such as zinc, lecithin, manganese, omega 3 fatty acids and Vitamins such as Vitamin E.

Good sources of these nutrients are whole wheat products, brown rice, oats, soya beans and legumes, eggs, milk, curds, cheese(yes it is safe to give cheese as a snack), nuts, unrefined vegetable oils. Flax seeds and fish too are good sources of omega 3 fatty acids.

Besides these nutrients, adequate sleep and exercise is required. Exercise helps in stimulating fresh oxygen to the brain and sleep helps to relax and unwind the brain.

Involve your child in brain racking activities such as chess and also make your child do puzzles, crosswords and memory games.

Is too much of protien good for muscle gain?

Is too much of protien good for muscle gain?

Following high protein diets are the latest fads. My clients who want to build muscle or gain weight want to eat lots of protein by drinking liters of milk, eating lots of chicken or more than 5 eggs in a day.

It all comes down to how much you need as per your body requirements or health status. Normal requirements are 1 gram per kilogram of body weight for a man with ideal body weight. 1.2 grams per kilogram for an underweight person and 1.5-2 grams per kilogram for patient with high fever, burns or accident cases with blood losses.

A very high protein diet can cause the kidneys to work harder and cause the teeth and bones to excrete calcium. Most of the protein foods contain fats and can increase the risk for heart disease, certain cancers, weight gain and in a few cases high blood pressure. Uric acid levels too can get elevated which can cause aches and pains in the joints.

High protein food can be low in fiber too which can cause constipation and many other diseases.

A healthy diet should have 15-20% protein. So consult with a dietitian before you do changes in your protein intake and will be the right person to to determine your protein intake.

Egg yolk- To eat or not to eat

Egg yolk- To eat or not to eat

egg yolk
egg yolk

This is a debate going on for quite sometime whether the yolk is bad or not. Many diet freaks avoid them like the plague. But I say eat the yolk. It all depends on how many you are eating.

It is not necessary to have cholesterol free diets. We do need some cholesterol. It is produced naturally in the body and forms a basic part of our cells. Cholesterol helps to regulate our hormones, helps us utilize Vitamin D and helps us digest food.

Healthy adults with normal cholesterol levels, who exercise regularly and who follow a low fat, least junk and a healthy high fiber diet can safely eat eggs.

Eggs are rich in choline which is a memory vitamin and also in lutein and zeaxanthin which are antioxidants.

One medium sized egg gives about 180-190 mg of cholesterol and our requirements are below 300 mg/day. Hence it is quite safe to eat an egg daily.

But if you do have a genetic predisposition for high cholesterol levels or are already overweight with high cholesterol levels, then the intake of egg yolks should be reduced to not more than 3 eggs per week.

It is not always cholesterol alone that causes problems. It is the oxygenation
of cholesterol that causes the damage. Oxygenation, or free radical
development, is the process that changes the composition of this
essential nutrient, turning it into a destructive compound. Oxidation
of cholesterol is formed when it is exposed to air. This happens during
the many stages of processing meat, milk, eggs, butter, and cheese
products. Added to this is the means of processing — firing, smoking,
curing, aging, and packaging all contribute further to the oxygenation
of cholesterol-containing foods. Such fast foods as fried chicken,
fish, hamburgers; as well as dried and packaged foods, are some of the
greatest sources of free radicals.

So if you just eat eggs, you cannot end up with high cholesterol problems. But regular intake of egg yolks plus junk food can increase your cholesterol problems.

Children who are active and within the weight for their age and height can be given one egg daily.

Egg whites can trigger allergies in children but not egg yolks, hence if you want to start eggs for your 9 month old baby, first start with a teaspoon of well cooked yolk and then after checking for allergies, progress further with the whole egg.

Eggs are very nutritious so do not omit them. Chuck the junk out of your diet and enjoy the benefits of healthy food.