Gestational Diabetes? Breastfeed Your Child to Help Prevent Obesity

Gestational Diabetes? Breastfeed Your Child to Help Prevent Obesity

Gestational diabetes can cause obesity in children, although in my own experience, I would venture to say that uncontrolled gestational diabetes causes obesity.  New research seems to prove that breastfeeding for six months or more can reduce the risk of obesity for babies of moms who had GD.  This is great news for those who may feel helpless to prevent the side effects of GD in children, because it gives something proactive and beneficial to try. 

In the study, nearly 500 children were studied – 94 from mothers who had gestational diabetes and 399 from mothers who did not.  According to USNews, children who were breastfed for more than six months had a slower body mass index (BMI) growth compared to children who were not breastfed that long.  The results were the same for kids whose mothers had GD and for those whose mothers did not.

This is just another reason why breastfeeding is so important.  It is all too easy to start using a bottle, but losing those benefits can have very real results for the health of our children.  When it comes to gestational diabetes though, the most important thing you can do is control your blood sugar levels during pregnancy.  My two GD babies weighed in at very different numbers.  The one born when I had uncontrolled GD weighed nine pounds, ten ounces, while the one born when I controlled my blood sugar weighed a nice seven pounds, seven ounces.  Those are results you can measure!

If, like me, you found out after your pregnancy that you had GD, breastfeeding can help reduce some of the negative effects your child might experience.