The Baby Steps study aims to understand more about gestational diabetes in a bid to develop an educational programme to reduce the risks of developing the condition in future pregnant women.
Mother of two, Kavita Sarana, said: “During my first pregnancy I had no problems at all, but when I was expecting my second child my blood sugar levels were very unbalanced and I was told I had gestational diabetes.
“I had no idea it can increase your baby’s chances of congenital abnormalities, and there are also risks of stillbirth and having larger babies. I spent the rest of my pregnancy worrying about my baby and my health so I am urging other expectant mothers to do all they can to avoid developing it.”
Working on the project is Midwifery Research Associate at CLARHC East Midlands and the University Hospitals of Leicester NHS Trust, Carol Liptrot who said: “Gestational diabetes happens if the body cannot produce enough insulin – a hormone that helps control blood sugar levels – to meet the extra needs in pregnancy.
“Although this is usually a temporary condition, it can be extremely serious and have everlasting consequences. However, observational evidence suggests a healthy lifestyle is associated with a reduced risk of developing Type 2 diabetes in women with a history of gestational diabetes.”
The Baby Steps study is being developed by the National Institute for Health Research.
Participants of the research will be subjected to either usual care or to the programme for researchers to gain a full understanding the impact of gestational diabetes.
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