Sugar free pregnancy? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 15 Old 07-21-2010, 06:13 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I am 28 weeks and am considering going sugar free. I have been gaining a lot of weight (roughly 2-3 pounds per week for the last month) and recently experimented with a week of sugar-free to see what happened. I gained no weight that week.

Who has gone sugar free in pregnancy? I like the idea in theory but since I'm against artificial sweeteners the thought of spending the last 12 weeks without sugar in my oatmeal or honey in my tea seems overwhelming. Is it possible to have just small amounts of sugar (like sugar in my oatmeal every now and then or a dessert once per week) or does that make it hard to cut the cravings completely? I am also dairy-free so it seems pretty restricting to me.
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#2 of 15 Old 07-21-2010, 06:36 PM
 
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I had gastric bypass in 2006 and sugar makes me way WAY sick. I use stevia in my coffee and tea, and for my oatmeal I use turbinado sugar - it's less processed so it ... well, honestly I dunno, but it doesn't make me puke.

Mama to DS T (10/11/2004) and DD M (09/03/09) and cookin' up baby #3 due late March/early April 2010!
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#3 of 15 Old 07-21-2010, 08:02 PM
 
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I put berries, or a banana & cinnamon in my oatmeal. I think it makes it taste sweet enough. (and I have a sweet tooth). Fruit has sugar in it though. Are you talking about eliminating all fruits and carbs (carbs are sugars too)?
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#4 of 15 Old 07-21-2010, 08:26 PM
 
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I have been sugar-free for quite awhile now. We eat a grain- & legume-free diet anyway (paleo style), and try to limit to one fruit a day and minimal sweetener (i.e. maple syrup) only when something truly calls for it (birthday avocado chocolate pudding, for example).

I'm 8wks and I've gained about a pound. Compared to my two previous pregnancies, which were not paleo and not sugar-free, I had already gained 5lbs...

With my 2nd pregnancy, my MW was really, really good about gently keeping me on track and not eating sweets (though I CRAVED them). I only gained 30-35lbs that pregnancy. (Compared to the 55+ of my first.)

Also, it's better for the baby. Baby's pancreas has to deal with all the sugar, too.

Nessa, DD1 (5) DD2 (3) & expecting again in late February/early March!
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#5 of 15 Old 07-21-2010, 08:31 PM
 
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I have gone 'refined sugar free' as much as possible during this pregnancy, and I won't eat any lunch meat or anything I suspect has MSG or anything in it, I'm staying away from ultrasound, microwaved foods and plastic as much as possible.

However, I do eat fruit, honey, molasses and the rare chocolate (I'm only human!) sometimes. I have to force myself to eat meat and fish, for some reason I don't crave them at all. Also drinking lots of raw milk for the X-factor vitamins, as well as the natural vitamins and minerals in there.

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#6 of 15 Old 07-21-2010, 08:32 PM
 
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As a Gestational Diabetic I recommend everything in moderation. Try cutting back a bit on sugar and being careful with the carbs. Don't do anything white as it's bad bad bad. That should also help your weight gain. When I was gaining a bunch of weight I doubled my vegetable intake and it made me feel fuller and of course with less calories. Good luck!!
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#7 of 15 Old 07-21-2010, 08:47 PM
 
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How strict are you going to be? I have cut back sugar a lot. I subbed coconut bliss ice cream for regular (it's about 1/3 of the sugars), I use maple syrup or snack on stuff like lara bars. But those are still sugars, so I guess it depends on how strict you would like to be.

I was diary, soy and egg free while nursing my daughter because she had reactions to them, and she weaned while I was pregnant so I have since added those back in, but no where near like I used to eat before I started nursing her. I used to eat candy bars, soda and cakes a few times a week. Last pregnancy I gained 12 pounds by 15 weeks. This pregnancy, I have gained 1 pound at 15 weeks. Granted I had HG, but I am eating way less sugar-y, high carb foods in general, no HFCS (I do indulge in a soda once in a while)

A lot of processed sugar makes me sick, I could never do a bowl of cereal in the morning, even as a kid, or I would get the shakes. And for some reason, this pregnancy, high sugar foods made me very sick in the first few weeks, so I gave up all juices, boxed cereals, and stuff like pancakes with syrup. Now I just use a little bit for flavor

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#8 of 15 Old 07-21-2010, 08:55 PM - Thread Starter
 
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See, I'm really not sure how strict I want to be. I tend to like moderation but I wasn't sure if that worked when it came to sugary stuff. I don't want to constantly be fighting cravings. I will definitely be eating all the fruit I want and won't even be cutting out 100% of white flour. I think for now I'll stick with fruit, honey, and maple syrup as my main sweeteners. Perhaps I'll allow myself an indulgence every once in a while (like brownies from a box or some cookies). That seems reasonable, right?
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#9 of 15 Old 07-21-2010, 09:39 PM
 
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just please remember that a lot of artificial sweeteners are a big no no in pregnancy. i am guessing that they dont get a lot of use around in this group, but i have noticed how many things have it snuck in.

i have some insulin resistance issues, and so i use organic Erythritol rather than sugar and save honey for a special treat.

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#10 of 15 Old 07-21-2010, 11:12 PM
 
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I just have to say good luck! :-) I totally have a sweet/salty tooth in pregnancy. It's really difficult for me to refrain from things in the sweet or salty category... But I do like a challenge. Next month I plan to not eat out to save some $ and because eating out tends to pad my tummy very quickly... Maybe I'll add cutting out the sweets to. I love fruit and if strawberries are available I'll eat them and be just as satisfied as I would be with a cookie. Anyways thanks for the post. I really need to be more responsible with my weight gain. With my daughter I was on a whole milk and cookie diet.... As a result I gained 80 lbs! This time around I'm 24 weeks and so far I've gained about 22-23 lbs. Still way over what I should but a lot better than last time around. Anyways I think eating out has been where most of my extra calories are coming from so time to cut it out! :-)

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#11 of 15 Old 07-21-2010, 11:14 PM
 
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My MW recommends no sugar in the 3rd tri (well, even in the 1st tri... in fact, refined sugar in the 2nd tri isn't good, either!). Anyway, for my two pregnancies with this MW, I've severely limited refined sugar. Essentially I've cut out empty calories - any sodas, sweets, etc. I've allowed things like fruit and still ate things like fruit yogurts (which had some amount of sugar, but also nutritional value). Basically, if it screamed "sugar," I avoided it. If it was real food and might have some natural sugar in it or even a little sweetener, I didn't worry too much.

I've also tried to limit white breads/flours, but not eliminated carbs or starches altogether. I've avoided things like french fries and gone for whole-grain breads (which we typically eat, anyway).

I'm plus-sized to begin with, but haven't gained in my pregnancies until the VERY end - and only a little (after losing in the first tri, so I maybe end up even). My MW's biggest concern is not having a baby that's bigger than it needs to be due to empty calories, and my babies have definitely benefited. My first (not with her) was 7lb14oz, and my 2nd was 7lb2oz and 3rd was 7lb4oz.

Anyway, I think it's entirely possible to do with whatever guidelines fit you best. I'm not entirely looking forward to it right now as sweets are sounding good periodically here. But, I know it's a good thing for both me and the baby! I think the only bad thing is that if you go back to a more indulgent diet after baby is born, you may not like the results.

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#12 of 15 Old 07-22-2010, 01:31 AM
 
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I'm far from sugar free right now, but I'm thinking I need to really cut back. I've been over-indulging. To answer your question about occasional treats, though, it has worked very well for me in the past to cut out all sugar on weekdays and allow myself treats (in moderation) on the weekends. By sugar I mean refined sugar--baked goods, etc., but not fruit.

lucky mom to Oliver, 8/6/07, and Finn, 11/28/10, and wife to DH
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#13 of 15 Old 07-22-2010, 02:10 AM
 
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If you want to cut back on sugar intake, you also need to cut back on fruit, refined carbs (incl. bread, rice, pasta), honey etc. (note that I added fruit, because it really should be in there in terms of the sugar it contains. But of course you should eat it, just be aware that it counts towards your sugar intake!) These have a similar effect on your body as sugar itself, so no point really just to cut back on the actual sugar itself. Cutting back on these makes it easier... indeed, to cut back on them.

I usually consume very few high-carb foods, but unfortunately it's been all I've been wanting to eat during my pregnancy. I am now trying to cut back to reduce the craving. Also, eating more protein and filling up on veggies will help you not gain weight too fast and have fewer cravings (btw, I am not a fan of any crazy low-carb diets!).
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#14 of 15 Old 07-22-2010, 09:55 AM
 
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I agree with the "moderation" people. We've ditched white sugar totally - I use organic turbinado sugar - and I make brownies, cookies, dessert almost daily (I live with 2 grown men who both do physical labor 15 hrs a day and don't really worry about their waistlines) and we all feel better.

Still do lots of fruit and veggies and protein but my guys aren't about to give up their potatoes and brownies.

I jut make everything from scratch so I can control the quality of ingredients.

Mama to DS T (10/11/2004) and DD M (09/03/09) and cookin' up baby #3 due late March/early April 2010!
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#15 of 15 Old 07-22-2010, 08:31 PM
 
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Sugar and refined flour products make me sick anymore so I eat it infrequently. I do add a little bit of honey or maple syrup as a sweetener when I make whole grain sweet breads and I do occasionally have half of a pb&j sandwich when DS doesn't finish his. And I have a bowl of mildly sweetened cereal (Kashi) every week or two.

I do eat a lot of fruits (melons and berries mostly .. and apples now that they're coming into season) which do not make me sick at all. If you eat the whole fruit the sugars come as a complete package with all of the water, fiber, vitamins, and other nutrients in the fruit so not only does it not spike/plummet your blood sugar, but you're nourishing your body and your baby. I personally see a lot of benefits to replacing sugar and desserts and with fruits & berries ... which can be just as tasty and don't leave me feeling sick. So I eat oatmeal with cinnamon and raisins, instead of sugary yogurt I eat plain yogurt with berries, dessert becomes stewed plums or fresh watermelon, etc.

One thing to keep in mind is that lacking protein in your diet can cause you to crave sweets more, so if you are craving a lot of sweets you might want to evaluate how much protein you're getting.

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