The Best Snacks for Gestational Diabetes

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You’re pregnant and you’ve been diagnosed with gestational diabetes. To say you’re probably feeling overwhelmed is an understatement! But don’t worry, mama… I got you and those snack attacks. It’s especially important that you choose the right snacks at the right times to keep your blood sugar levels stable and your energy levels up.

Choosing foods that are packed with nutrients and phytochemicals is essential for the growth and development of your baby… and to keep mom healthy too!

Snack Tips for Gestational Diabetes

  • Eat every 3 hours or so
  • Make sure every meal and snack is balanced

What do I mean by “balanced”…?

Snacks That Stabilize Blood Sugars

To manage your gestational diabetes, you want every meal and snack to have 3 components:

  1. Complex Carbohydrates (including fiber)
  2. Protein
  3. Healthy Fat

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The Best Snack Ideas for Gestational Diabetes

Here’s a list of snacks I recommend you keep on hand throughout your pregnancy:

  • Veggies and hummus (or other bean dip)
Snacks for gestational diabetes veggies and hummus
  • Nuts (unsalted, preferably raw; 1/4 cup serving)
    • Almonds
    • Brazil nuts
    • Cashews
    • Hazelnuts
    • Macadamia nuts
    • Pecans
    • Pistachios
    • Walnuts
  • Seeds (unsalted, preferably raw; 1/4 cup serving)
    • Pumpkin seeds (pepitas)
    • Sunflower seeds
  • Steamed edamame pods with a sprinkle of salt or sesame oil
  • Mini whole grain pita stuffed with egg salad or tuna salad
  • Small banana with unsweetened almond butter
  • Small apple with unsweetened peanut butter
  • Chicken avocado wrap (whole grain wrap with roasted chicken breast or nitrate-free low fat turkey deli meat with 1/4 of an avocado, tomato and lettuce)
  • Cottage cheese (1/2 cup) and a handful of blueberries
  • Slice of wholegrain toast with nut butter (unsweetened)
  • Caprese salad skewers (bocconcini cheese, cherry tomatoes and fresh basil on toothpicks or cocktail skewers)
  • Mini pizza (1/2 of a whole grain English muffin with crushed tomatoes or pesto and a sprinkle of low fat mozzarella or ricotta cheese, broiled until cheese is melted)
Chocolate Peanut Butter Protein Bites - No Bake, Gluten Free, Vegan - recipe by Christy Brissette media registered dietitian nutritionist President of 80 Twenty Nutrition
  • Wholegrain crackers (a serving is usually 5 small crackers) and 1 oz (1 slice) of cheese
  • Red pepper strips with guacamole
  • Cucumber slices with tzatziki
  • Green smoothies (that have protein and moderate carbs)

The Best Packaged Snacks for Gestational Diabetes

Because we’re busy enough… and sometimes you just need something you can grab and go.

I’ve put together a list of my favorite snacks for gestational diabetes on Amazon so you can stock up quickly and easily.

The Best Protein Bars for Gestational Diabetes

If you like having some protein bars on hand just in case you need to eat something quickly (and stealthily), here are my top picks. These are all gluten-free. Note that the CLIF and KIND bars contain inulin/chicory root fiber, so they can be a bit more gassy if you’re sensitive to that. Especially during pregnancy!

Aloha protein bars – vegan, organic and gluten-free

CLIF whey protein bars

KIND protein bars

Healthy Snack Shopping List for Gestational Diabetes

I’ve divided them up into snacks that need to be refrigerated if you’re at home or have a fridge at your work. If you don’t have access to a fridge during the day, not to worry. Read on!

I like to keep a separate list of foods that are shelf-stable/non-perishable, or don’t need to be kept in the fridge. This is key for everyone. We all run errands that end of taking longer than we thought, and I don’t want you to get stuck without having something to eat.

Keeping your car, purse, gym bag, desk drawer, etc. loaded with snacks is key to making sure you don’t let your blood sugar drop. This can lead to overeating later and puts your blood sugars out of whack. You want this to be smooth sailing for you and the baby!

Snack for gestational diabetes Greek yogurt and berries

Fridge Snack Shopping List

  • Natural peanut butter, almond butter or other nut and seed butter, no added sugar
  • Edamame, boiled or steamed
  • Plain Greek yogurt, unsweetened (avoid “diet” yogurts with artificial sweeteners)
  • Cheese
    • Cheese sticks, slices and/or Babybel cheese
  • Shredded mozzarella for mini pizzas
Gestational diabetes snacks guacamole and veggies tomatoes
  • Fresh fruit
    • Berries
      • Blackberries
      • Blueberries
      • Raspberries
      • Strawberries
    • Apples
    • Pears
    • Small bananas
  • Veggies
    • Cherry tomatoes
    • Celery sticks
    • Carrot sticks
    • Cucumber rounds or spears
    • Sugar snap peas
    • Snow peas
    • Bell pepper slices
    • Jicama sticks
    • Zucchini spears
  • Baby spinach for green smoothies
Gestational diabetes snacks nuts

Non Perishable Snack Shopping List

  • Nuts (unsalted, preferably raw; 1/4 cup serving)
    • Almonds
    • Brazil nuts
    • Cashews
    • Hazelnuts
    • Macadamia nuts
    • Pecans
    • Pistachios
    • Walnuts
  • Seeds (unsalted, preferably raw; 1/4 cup serving)
  • Crackers made from whole grains, nuts and/or seeds

Gestational Diabetes Meal Planning

Wondering what to eat for your meals? Here’s how you can make meal planning easier.

Looking for more personalized advice? I’d love to help! Reach out and let’s talk about nutrition coaching. We can work together to create a meal plan to help you reach your goals.

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