Glucose Tolerance Test

I decided to take the glucose tolerance test despite the fact that I’m not at risk for gestational diabetes.  My decision was based on my weight gain, which has happened rapidly throughout the pregnancy, and because I thought it would be better to have the awareness of g.d. rather than regret later that I didn’t control it when I could.

I had the dreaded test this evening.  My appointment was actually scheduled for this morning, but part of having a private midwife is being flexible when one of their other patients have a baby.  So, even though I had followed a certain regime this morning for the test, I had to reschedule for this afternoon.  No big deal, really, because a sweet baby girl was born at home this morning, and I support that.

The regime my midwife had me follow helps to even out blood sugar levels over a matter of days and prevents false results on the test.  This will also prevent me from having to take the 2 hour fasting test. 
The regime is as follows:

  • Eat a large breakfast of foods normally ingested.  Remember high protein and low sugar
  • Engage in 45 minutes of exercise such as walking immediately prior to commencing the test, or as close to as possible
  • 3 days of carbohydrate loading with complex carbohydrates to equal a total of 150grams daily (no sugar or white flour)

Having any additional refined foods prior to the test will increase the load and potentially alter the results.  When the pancreas is presented with an unusually high glucose load, insulin is not produced fast enough to compensate.  A temporary pseudo-diabetes results, causing test results to be abnormally high.  When the pancreas catches up and the insulin surge brings the blood glucose level down, this rebound effect usually demonstrates hypoglycaemia. 

Other factors that can skew results include infection, lack of exercise, poor diet, smoking, caffeine intake and fear and anxiety.  All interfering factors should be removed or cleared up at least 3 days prior to testing.

I felt a little nervous about the test, but it wasn’t bad.  The drink tasted like a flat sprite.  I had to drink it within five minutes, and that really wasn’t a problem for me.  I should find out the results tonight or tomorrow morning!  Hopefully it’s all good.

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