Blood Sugar, Insulin, Ketones and Pregnancy

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Editor's Note: In this post at Life In The Petri Dish, Mo talks about her experiences trying to manage her sugar levels during her pregnancy. With only 44 days to go, she has started on insulin and is now battling to address her body's issues with ketones. What does this mean for baby? -- AV

I saw my obstetrician and she agreed with me that my blood sugar was not adequately controlled -- particularly the fasting levels, which were often mid-90s, with occasional spikes into the low 100s. So insulin it is. I started on a low dose -- 2 units -- last Thursday night. And instant amazingness! My fasting numbers were great! Around 90. Sometimes in the high 80s! (The goal is below 95). All my post-prandial (after eating) levels were also awesome!

Photo via Mo.

Sounds wonderful, doesn't it? Enter the next major snafu: Ketones. I started having ketones in my urine, which means I am breaking down fat instead of glucose for energy. The highest levels were first thing in the morning (often measuring "moderate," but once measuring "large" -- akkk!), and there were small amounts present when I tested throughout the day as well.

I tried reading up on this and found that ketones + baby = badness, particularly for later intellectual functioning of said baby. Many websites referred to this information... but I couldn't find any actual research discussing exactly what we were talking about here -- how severe are these cognitive problems? What levels of ketones in the urine are an issue? Is a day or two of high ketones dangerous or is it more a problem over the long haul?

Read more at Life In The Petri Dish here.

Read more from Insulin...and the start of nighttime feedings already?! at Life and Love in the Petri Dish