Article

Strategies in the Nutritional Management of Gestational Diabetes

†Division of Women, Children, and Family Health, College of Nursing ‡Center for Women's Health Research Departments of *Medicine, Division of Endocrinology, Metabolism, and Diabetes §Geriatric Medicine ∥Pediatrics ¶Medicine, Division of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of Colorado, Anschutz Medical Campus, Aurora, Colorado.
Clinical obstetrics and gynecology (Impact Factor: 1.53). 09/2013; 56(4). DOI: 10.1097/GRF.0b013e3182a8e0e5
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Elucidating the optimal macronutrient composition for dietary management of gestational diabetes mellitus has enormous potential to improve perinatal outcomes. Diet therapy may result in significant cost savings if effective in deterring the need for expensive medical management within this growing population. In only 6 randomized controlled trials in 250 women, data suggest that a diet higher in complex carbohydrate and fiber, low in simple sugar, and lower in saturated fat may be effective in blunting postprandial hyperglycemia, preventing worsened insulin resistance and excess fetal growth. The use of diet in gestational diabetes mellitus remains an area in grave need for high-quality randomized controlled trials.

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    ABSTRACT: OBJECTIVE The conventional diet approach to gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM) advocates carbohydrate restriction, resulting in higher fat (HF), also a substrate for fetal fat accretion and associated with maternal insulin resistance. Consequently, there is no consensus about the ideal GDM diet. We hypothesized that, compared with a conventional, lower carbohydrate/HF diet (40% carbohydrate/45% fat/15% protein), consumption of a higher-complex carbohydrate (HCC)/lower fat (LF) Choosing Healthy Options in Carbohydrate Energy (CHOICE) diet (60/25/15%) would result in 24-h glucose area under the curve (AUC) profiles within therapeutic targets and lower postprandial lipids.RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS Using a randomized, crossover design, we provided 16 GDM women (BMI 34 ± 1 kg/m(2)) with two 3-day isocaloric diets at 31 ± 0.5 weeks (washout between diets) and performed continuous glucose monitoring. On day 4 of each diet, we determined postprandial (5 h) glucose, insulin, triglycerides (TGs), and free fatty acids (FFAs) following a controlled breakfast meal.RESULTSThere were no between-diet differences for fasting or mean nocturnal glucose, but 24-h AUC was slightly higher (∼6%) on the HCC/LF CHOICE diet (P = 0.02). The continuous glucose monitoring system (CGMS) revealed modestly higher 1- and 2-h postprandial glucose on CHOICE (1 h, 115 ± 2 vs. 107 ± 3 mg/dL, P ≤ 0.01; 2 h, 106 ± 3 vs. 97 ± 3 mg/dL, P = 0.001) but well below current targets. After breakfast, 5-h glucose and insulin AUCs were slightly higher (P < 0.05), TG AUC was no different, but the FFA AUC was significantly lower (∼19%; P ≤ 0.01) on the CHOICE diet.CONCLUSION This highly controlled study randomizing isocaloric diets and using a CGMS is the first to show that liberalizing complex carbohydrates and reducing fat still achieved glycemia below current treatment targets and lower postprandial FFAs. This diet strategy may have important implications for preventing macrosomia.
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