Physical activity is another important part of your diabetes treatment plan. During your preconception appointment, get your doctor's OK to exercise. Then choose activities you enjoy, such as walking, swimming or stationary biking, and make them part of your daily routine.
Aim for at least 150 minutes a week of moderate aerobic activity — based on Department of Health and Human Services guidelines for exercise during pregnancy. If you haven't been active for a while, start slowly and build up gradually.
Remember that physical activity affects blood sugar. Check your blood sugar level before and after any activity, especially if you take insulin. You might need to eat a snack before exercising to help prevent low blood sugar. If you're using an insulin pump, you might need to adjust the basal rate for exercise.
When you're preparing for pregnancy, try to keep stress under control. Too much stress can interfere with your blood sugar level and make it harder to take good care of yourself — and your baby.
Patience pays off
Until your health care provider gives you the green light for pregnancy, remember to use a reliable method of birth control. A healthier pregnancy is worth the wait.
Dec. 13, 2014
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- Zabihi S, et al. Understanding diabetic teratogenesis: Where are we now and where are we going? Birth Defects Research. 2010;88:779.
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- Stress. American Diabetes Association. http://www.diabetes.org/living-with-diabetes/complications/mental-health/stress.html. Accessed Oct. 29, 2014.