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Good Snacks for Gestational Diabetes to Aid Blood Sugar Control: 10+ Healthy Ideas
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Good Snacks for Gestational Diabetes to Aid Blood Sugar Control: 10+ Healthy Ideas

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Written by Edibel Quintero, RD | Medically reviewed by Medically reviewed by Rosmy Barrios, MD check
Published on December 3, 2022
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7 min

Pregnancy can increase your appetite and make you crave snacks throughout the day. With gestational diabetes, choosing your snacks wisely is vital to keep your blood sugar levels stable. Here, you can find our ultimate list of tasty snack ideas for gestational diabetes.

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Have you been diagnosed with gestational diabetes?

If yes, you might feel overwhelmed when managing your diet. It’s a temporary condition, but you must monitor your food choices to keep your blood sugar levels in the recommended range. Doing so will prevent complications and support a healthy pregnancy.

You will soon adapt to creating balanced meals that keep you healthy. In the meantime, we have compiled a list of the best snacks to enjoy as part of your gestational diabetes diet.

Discover these snack ideas that won’t send your blood sugars soaring.

10+ Good Snacks for Gestational Diabetes: The Ultimate List

Snacking between meals can help you balance your blood sugars. As women tend to need more calories when pregnant – it’s a win-win situation. So, you can eat snacks with gestational diabetes, but you should choose healthy options that won’t upset your blood glucose content.

Here are 14 snacks that will keep you going until your next meal.

#1 Cottage cheese with berries

Cottage cheese is a filling snack with 11g of protein and just over 4g of carbohydrates per 11g serving. It provides many important minerals, including calcium, which supports your growing baby’s bones. It also has magnesium, another essential mineral during pregnancy.

Furthermore, cottage cheese has a low glycemic index of 0.6 and less fat than many other cheeses. Adding berries creates a sweet and savory snack for gestational diabetes. Blackberries and raspberries are low on the glycemic index and won’t raise blood glucose as much as other berries.

#2 Greek yogurt with blueberries

Blueberries are among the best berries for diabetes. They contain lots of antioxidants to help reduce cardiovascular disease risk and a good amount of fiber to support blood sugar regulation. Their sweet taste and natural sugar can help satisfy your sweet tooth.

Pair these super-berries with unsweetened Greek yogurt for a low-carb, high-protein snack.

#3 Hard cheese

You don’t always have to get creative – sometimes nibbling on some cheese is enough to cure hunger pangs. Cheese is rich in calcium and protein, and hard cheeses tend to have less saturated fat than soft cheeses. Cheddar, parmesan, or Swiss cheese are good snack choices to try.

#4 Nuts

Consuming nuts as your snack choice can make up a balanced diet. Nuts have a good amount of protein and lots of healthy fat to support your heart. Swapping a high-carbohydrate food like biscuits with almonds can aid glycemic control.

Although not technically nuts, peanuts are another good snacking choice. You could add seeds to your nut snacks, such as pumpkin or sunflower seeds.

Frequent nut consumption may reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes, which those with gestational diabetes are more prone to developing.

#5 Pickles

Pickles are a delicious salty snack you can eat alone or pair with something like cream cheese. Cucumber is the most popular type of pickled food. Those without added sugar usually have a low glycemic index that supports blood sugar control and may lower cholesterol.

Eating pickles also provides your body with probiotics that improve digestion and gut health, which is especially important during pregnancy.

#6 Green or black olives

Olives are one of the world’s healthiest foods, rich in antioxidants like vitamin E, which strengthens the immune system to fight off disease. Olives and olive oil contain oleuropein – a polyphenolic compound that may improve glucose transport to cells and increase insulin sensitivity.

Of course, as with any other food, moderation is the key. It is best to eat 16–24 medium-sized olives per day as they are high in fat and salt.

#7 Mozzarella with basil and tomato

Here’s another cheese to include in your gestational diabetes snacks. Mozzarella is lower in calories than other cheeses and is rich in calcium, protein, and phosphorus. Like calcium, phosphorus helps build strong bones during pregnancy for you and your baby.

The protein in mozzarella helps balance out your blood sugar content. Tomatoes are full of health benefits, like reducing the risk of heart disease and not spiking your blood sugar levels. Basil is a rich source of vitamin K, essential for blood clotting and bone development.

#8 Kimchi

Kimchi is a good pregnancy food when you’re craving a spicy snack. It may be one of the best fermented snacks for diabetes because it’s low in carbohydrates and calories. Fermented foods support healthy gut microbiota, and consuming them can boost your digestive health.

#9 Chia pudding with nut butter

Chia pudding is one way to snack on chia seeds for a dose of antioxidants and fiber. Dietary fiber improves glycemic control and promotes satiety to stop you from eating unhealthy snacks. Add protein-filled nut butter to this snack to reduce postprandial glycemic response.

Peanut butter and almond butter have a high protein content and can even help regulate insulin levels.

#10 Cucumber sticks and hummus

Cucumber goes great with cream cheese, but why not switch things up and have hummus?

Hummus is excellent for people with diabetes because it can support healthy blood sugar levels. It’s made from chickpeas – legumes that are encouraged on a diabetes diet because they have a low glycemic index. Plus, eating hummus supports weight loss and weight management.

Raw vegetables make great gestational diabetes snacks. They contain fiber, which slows down the absorption of carbohydrates. Alternatively, try celery or carrot sticks, which work just as well.

#11 Guacamole and red pepper strips

Guacamole is an avocado-based dip full of healthy fats. Avocado supports your overall heart health and may improve blood sugar control. Snacking on raw vegetables delivers essential nutrients, and red bell peppers have an abundance of vitamin C and may also work to reduce elevated blood sugar.

#12 Side salad with halloumi cheese

Making a simple side salad of leafy green vegetables is easy. You can add a small amount of calcium-rich halloumi cheese for healthy bones and teeth during pregnancy. Just keep in mind halloumi has a high sodium content, so don’t go overboard with this salty snack.

Preparing a salad is a good way to get your daily nuts and seeds. Pine nuts, pumpkin seeds, and sunflower seeds are great for scattering over salads to add crunch and added protein. They can also help keep your blood sugars in check.

#13 Deviled eggs

You can make deviled eggs with pasteurized mayonnaise and mustard for a more exciting snack than plain hard-boiled eggs. Eggs are good for diabetes as they are a low-carb food and an excellent source of protein and healthy fats. They also promote satiety and aid weight management.

#14 Kale chips

Kale chips are one of the tastiest ways to get this superfood into your diet. All you need to do is toss together kale, olive oil, and sea salt before cooking in the oven. Kale is a leafy green that benefits any diet, and regular intake may suppress high blood sugar concentrations after meals.

Where to Find Gestational-Diabetes-Friendly Recipes?

Many gestational-diabetes-friendly recipes circulate the internet, so it’s not difficult to find a good selection. However, if you want a more convenient method that stores your recipes in one place for quick access, it’s worth giving a diabetes app a go.

The Klinio app is designed for people with diabetes of all kinds, as well as prediabetes. It provides a personalized meal plan that covers your calories, macronutrients, sugar, and cholesterol needs. The tracking tool lets you monitor your blood glucose levels at any time.

Klinio
  • Personalized and diabetes-safe meal plan
  • An integrated shopping list that matches the meal plan
  • No-equipment home workouts
  • All-in-one health and progress tracker
  • Detailed activity log
Our rating:
4.4
Learn More

You can find thousands of recipes with meals you can quickly prepare in 15–20 minutes. Swapping ingredients and adjusting recipes based on your progress is easy using a simplified weekly grocery list. So, if you’re struggling to navigate your diet, you can use Klinio as your assistant.

FAQs

Can I eat peanut butter if I have gestational diabetes?

Yes, you can eat peanut butter if you have gestational diabetes. Peanut butter has a low glycemic index and can help you manage your blood glucose levels. It’s also full of protein and heart-healthy fats, making it a highly nutritious snack for pregnant women with diabetes.

Can I eat fruits with gestational diabetes?

You can still eat fruits if you have been diagnosed with gestational diabetes, but you must eat them in moderation. Choose fruits full of essential vitamins and minerals rather than fruit juices and smoothies, which tend to have high sugar content.

Can the keto diet help manage gestational diabetes?

The keto diet may be beneficial for people with diabetes under the medical supervision of a doctor. However, keto is not recommended while you are pregnant, lactating, or trying to conceive. So, skipping the keto diet if you have gestational diabetes is best.

A Word From MD

Gestational diabetes is a condition that occurs when the body is unable to make enough insulin during pregnancy. Insulin is the hormone created in the pancreas responsible for allowing blood sugar to enter the cells for energy, reducing levels in the bloodstream.

You can develop high blood sugar levels when your body can’t make enough insulin. This can increase the risk of health complications for you and your baby. To lower the potential risks, early detection is crucial so that you can begin treatment to gain blood sugar control.

Gestational diabetes is common and usually goes away after you give birth. Treatment for the condition centers around diabetes management to reduce your blood sugar levels. The most effective method is to make healthy lifestyle changes, like altering your diet and exercising.

You can fill your meal plan with foods that offer blood sugar-lowering effects. Fruits, vegetables, legumes, whole grains, eggs, almond butter, pumpkin seeds, and chia seeds are great examples of diabetes-friendly foods. These foods will support your overall health while pregnant.

Only a doctor can diagnose gestational diabetes during routine blood tests.

Conclusion

Developing gestational diabetes mellitus can be an unnerving time. It requires a serious focus on your diet to ensure your blood sugar levels remain in the target range. However, once you get to grips with your eating habits, you can continue a safe and healthy pregnancy journey.

Try our flavorsome gestational diabetes snacks to satisfy cravings and those additional hunger pangs. For more foods and inventive recipes to fit your new diet, consider purchasing the Klinio app. It’s perfect for those who have just received a diabetes diagnosis.

Klinio
  • Personalized and diabetes-safe meal plan
  • An integrated shopping list that matches the meal plan
  • No-equipment home workouts
  • All-in-one health and progress tracker
  • Detailed activity log
Our rating:
4.4
Learn More
HR_author_photo_Edibel
Written by
Edibel Quintero is a medical doctor who graduated in 2013 from the University of Zulia and has been working in her profession since then. She specializes in obesity and nutrition, physical rehabilitation, sports massage and post-operative rehabilitation. Edibel’s goal is to help people live healthier lives by educating them about food, exercise, mental wellness and other lifestyle choices that can improve their quality of life.
Medically reviewed by Rosmy Barrios, MD
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