Am I at risk of gestational diabetes?

What is gestational diabetes?

This condition happens when the body does not make enough insulin or is unable to use all of the insulin needed during pregnancy. Insulin is a hormone that helps the body convert food into energy. Without insulin, glucose (sugar) from the food you eat cannot enter cells and builds up in the blood. Body tissue becomes starved for energy. The excess sugar in the blood can cross the placenta and cause problems for the baby.

These factors increase your risk of developing diabetes during pregnancy:
Being overweight prior to becoming pregnant (if you are 20% or more over your ideal body weight)
Family history of diabetes (if your parents or siblings have diabetes)
Being over age 25
Previously giving birth to a baby over 9 pounds
Previously giving birth to a stillborn baby
Having gestational diabetes with a previous pregnancy
Having too much amniotic fluid (a condition called polyhydramnios)

Keep in mind that half of women who develop gestational diabetes have no known risk factors.


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