Diabetes during pregnancy
Published on: Jul 08, 2021
7 min Read

Gestational Diabetes Not a Limitation to Having a Healthy Baby, Diabefly GDM Helps Lower HbA1c by 18% & Increase Hemoglobin by 45%

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Pregnancy is a life-changing and the most incredible experience in a woman’s life. Unfortunately for some women, it is not that easy and comes with some challenges. One of these challenges is Gestational Diabetes Mellitus (GDM) also commonly known as Pregnancy Diabetes.

Balancing your intense pregnancy cravings (you may want to binge on a whole tub of Baskin Robbin’s Mississippi mud ice cream in one sitting) and healthy eating isn’t easy. And on top of it, the added stress of how raised blood sugars will affect your baby’s growth can take a toll on your overall health.

The good news is by tweaking your lifestyle under the supervision of an expert Pregnancy Coach & Diabetes Educator; you can manage GDM. Research shows that 90% of women with GDM can be managed completely with lifestyle therapy without any medications.

With the help of Diabefly GDM, Dr Granthali Walke delivered a healthy full-term baby weighing 3.2 kg, her HbA1c dropped by 18% from 7.3% to 6%, hemoglobin levels increased by 45% from 8 g/dL to 11.6 g/dL, food diversity score (higher score means better nutritional status) improved by 13% — in just 3 months!


Dr Granthali Walke’s Medical History

Dr Granthali Walke was diagnosed with GDM during the second trimester of her pregnancy at the age of 37. To manage her high blood sugar levels during pregnancy, her treating doctor had prescribed insulin injections three times a day.

Though she did not have a history of GDM in her previous pregnancy, a busy life managing work and personal life steered her off of the healthy lifestyle route and led to GDM this time around.

Before pregnancy, she was also diagnosed with thalassemia (a blood disorder) which led to anaemia. To manage anaemia and keep her haemoglobin levels under control, she was on iron tablets (thrice a day) and on injectable iron (3 doses given during pregnancy).

To help her manage the various aspects of GDM, Dr Granthali’s gynaecologist recommended Diabefly GDM – a digital diabetes management program designed specifically for pregnant women. Diabefly GDM offers access to a certified Pregnancy Coach who is also a trainer Diabetes Educator. Dr Granthali enrolled for Diabefly GDM at the beginning of the 7th month of her pregnancy.

How did Diabefly GDM help Dr Granthali?

Dr Granthali’s case with multiple health conditions was assigned to a Senior Diabefly GDM Coach and Nutritionist with more than 20 years of experience in maternal & neonatal health along with being a Certified Diabetes Educator — Swati Thoda. 

Swati started with a detailed profiling call where she got to know Dr Granthali and her complete medical history and current lifestyle in detail. They then tracked her diet and exercise routine for 3 days on the  Fitterfly Wellness App 

Granthali’s SMBG (self-monitoring of blood glucose) readings showed a fasting blood sugar value of 118 mg/dL and a post-prandial blood sugar value of 240 mg/dL at the time of enrollment.

By correlating her SMBG readings with her food and exercise logs, Swati was able to deduce the exact causes of blood sugar fluctuations that occurred throughout the day.

Based on these insights, Swati curated a personalised nutrition & lifestyle management plan on day 4. To ensure that the recommendations were showing results, Swati closely monitored Granthali’s blood sugar readings that were done frequently until her delivery date. With the help of personalised coaching, things changed drastically for Dr Walke.

Dr Granthali Walke’s 3-month results from Diabefly GDM

Parameter Before Diabefly GDM After Diabefly GDM Result
HbA1c 7.3% 6% Reduced by 18%
Fasting blood sugar(Should aim to keep it less than 92 mg/dL* ) 118 mg/dL 80 mg/dL Ideal value Reduced by 32%
Post-prandial blood sugar(Should aim to keep it less than 120 mg/dL*) 240 mg/dL 113 mg/dL Reduced by 53%
Hemoglobin levels(Should aim to keep it between 12-16 g/dL**) 8 g/dL 11.6 g/dL(Closer to the ideal value) Increased by 45%
Mother’s Weight 73 kg

(at 7th month of pregnancy)

75.5 kg

(at the time of delivery)

Increased 2.5 kg

Healthy weight gain

Food diversity score(Measures the different nutrients present in the diet.) 8 9(Higher score means better nutritional status) Increased by 13%

* for women with gestational diabetes

** for pregnant women

Dr Granthali Walke saw positive outcomes at the time of delivery:

  • She delivered a healthy full-term baby weighing 3.2 kg through c-section on 30th November 2020.
  • Her gynaecologist did not report any complications, neither for the mother nor baby, at the time of delivery.
  • Her treating doctor stopped her insulin dosage after delivery as her blood sugar immediately came under control. .

Dr Granthali Walke’s problem areas and their solution:

After gaining a thorough understanding of the factors that led to the fluctuation in blood sugar levels, Swati created a personalised GDM care plan for Dr Granthali Walke.

Here are seven things that she did for Granthali to achieve a healthy pregnancy: 

1. Sudden spikes in blood sugars post-meals in the evening were common. This was because she would come back starving from work and binge on unhealthy carb-rich foods.

  1. To correct this, Swati advised her to avoid long gaps in meals and gave her protein-rich snacks in between her major meals. Additionally, she distributed the carb-load throughout the day by properly spacing it out in the meals. As a result, her post-dinner blood sugar reading reduced by 28% from 312 mg/dL to 224 mg/dL.
  2. Corrected her nutritional imbalances — reduced- carbs and fats, and increased- protein and fibre intake through nutrient-dense meal plans
  3. Increased her iron intake to manage anemia. Swati explained the significance of adding Vitamin C in the food for better iron absorption. She also changed the timing of her iron and calcium supplements by explaining about the drug-nutrient interaction which could interfere in absorption of either, when taken together.
  4. Managed her pregnancy cravings by giving her healthier food choices which had a combination of complex carbohydrates and proteins to keep her blood sugar levels within the targeted range.
  5. Kept her active throughout the pregnancy by suggesting safe pregnancy exercises like basic stretching, walking, prenatal yoga to do at home due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
  6. Gained healthy weight despite being on insulin — an anabolic hormone that can cause excess weight gain. But with the help of a well-balanced diet and moderate exercises, Swati helped Dr Granthali gain weight healthily to avoid complications at the time of delivery.
  7. Managed her stress levels caused due to dealing with the day-to-day challenges of GDM, the ongoing pandemic and much more by sharing relaxing meditation audio guides. She encouraged Dr Granthali Walke to continue doing meditation and yoga as a part of her daily routine.

Managing GDM by herself while keeping up with work and her toddler was challenging for Dr Granthali. Combined with the constant worry about uncontrolled blood sugars affecting her baby further worsened her health. But thanks to Diabefly GDM’s personalised and scientific guidance, Dr Walke was able to have a healthy pregnancy and safe delivery after all.

Here is what Dr Granthali Walke has to say about her experience with Diabefly GDM:

‘Despite being a doctor, I was very apprehensive about my raised blood sugar levels. But, with the help of my Coach, I started seeing positive changes in my blood sugar levels. My pregnancy coach guided me throughout my journey with her in-depth knowledge. The most challenging part was managing my cravings, but she gave me healthier food choices, considering my meal preferences that helped me a lot. My Diabefly GDM coach was very warm, knowledgeable and helpful. Because of the right sugar control, I delivered a healthy baby without any complications, and my health post-delivery is also good. 

Diabefly GDM guidelines made an overall positive impact on my and my baby’s health. They shared timely messages trimester-wise on nutrition, baby development and self-care too. Their app was very user-friendly and kept track of my food intake. Thank you, Team Diabefly GDM.’

To this effect, Team Fitterfly has recently launched India’s first-ever Digital Therapeutics Pregnancy Care Program for expectant mothers with diabetes — Diabefly GDMIt is specially designed to control your blood sugars during pregnancy and that too naturally!

Like this patient, help other expectant mothers control diabetes for an uneventful pregnancy and have a healthy baby with Diabefly GDM.

For more information on how to manage high-risk pregnancy, visit our website at www.fitterfly.com/health/diabetes-gdm or call us at +91 7314855505.

About Diabefly GDM

Diabefly GDM is a digital therapeutics pregnancy care program for pregnant women with raised blood sugars (hyperglycemia). It is specially designed to control diabetes during pregnancy without using medications with the help of personalised coaching from a team of specialists, including a Diabefly Coach or a Nutritionist, a Physiotherapist and a Psychologist. Diabefly GDM offers personalised meal plans trimester-wise, safe pregnancy exercise prescription, sleep and stress management plan along with unlimited call & chat support. During your pregnancy journey, our Diabefly GDM Coach guides and nudges you to make smart lifestyle choices to control your blood sugars for a healthy pregnancy and a healthy baby. 

*Patient consent: Informed consent of the patient was taken. All the procedures, risks, and benefits of the medical tests performed on the patient were clearly explained. The same was freely given by the patient and was documented before submission.

- By Fitterfly Health-Team