Today I wanted to share some recent findings about the effects of elevated glucose on a developing baby's nervous system. I often think we start too late when looking for origins of many medical issues. I've learned to start way back in utero when evaluating a situation and trying to sort through what's going on. Here's an example of why that can be important.
A group of chick eggs were injected with glucose. Significant changes were found in the babies that developed from those eggs, including:
--their own hyperglycemia
--elevated oxidative (degenerative) activity in body and brain tissue
--lower body weight
--lower brain weight
There also seems to be lower levels of DHA in babies exposed to hyperglycemia. This may be due to the elevated oxidative activity destroying any DHA that might be there.
You're likely aware that taking folate is pretty much an across the board recommendation to pregnant women. In this study, hyperglycemia seemed to induce a level of oxidation/inflammation that was not significantly helped with a folate supplement.
Bottom line, it's important to eat well not just to avoid weight gain or to keep your blood sugar low to keep your doctor and dietitian happy, but because your baby's brain and body depend on you to do so.
Most of my clients express surprise that healthy eating includes as many tasty foods as it does. So before you write off a visit to the dietitian because you're afraid of what you WON'T be able to eat, consider that it may be your ticket to freedom and guilt relief to work with someone who can introduce you to the many foods that will BENEFIT you and baby!
Cole NW, Weaver KR, Walcher BN, Adams ZF, Miller RR Jr. Hyperglycemia-induced membrane lipid peroxidation and elevated homocysteine levels are poorly attenuated by exogenous folate in embryonic chick brains. Comp Biochem Physiol B Biochem Mol Biol. 2008 Jul;150(3):338-43.
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