Effect of a low glycaemic index diet on blood glucose in women with gestational hyperglycaemia

Diabetes Res Clin Pract. 2011 Jan;91(1):15-22. doi: 10.1016/j.diabres.2010.09.002. Epub 2010 Nov 20.


Aim: The objectives of this pilot study were to determine the feasibility and effect on glycaemic control of a low-glycaemic-index (GI) diet in women with gestational diabetes or impaired glucose tolerance of pregnancy.

Methods: participants, recruited from the Diabetes-in-Pregnancy Clinic of an inner-city teaching hospital serving a predominantly non-Caucasian population, were randomized to a low-GI (n=23) or control (n=24) diet and followed from 28 weeks gestation until delivery. Self-monitored-blood-glucose (SMBG), maternal and infant weight were collected from medical charts. Dietary intakes were assessed using diet records and questionnaires.

Results: diet GI on control (58, 95% CI: 56,60) was significantly higher than on low-GI (49, 95% CI: 47,51; p=0.001). Glycaemic control improved on both diets, but more postprandial glucose values were within target on low-GI (58.4% of n=1891) than control (48.7% of n=1834; p<0.001). SMBG post-breakfast was directly related to pre-pregnancy BMI in the control, but not the low-GI group (BMI*diet interaction; p=0.021). Participants accepted the study foods and were willing to consume them post-intervention.

Conclusions: a low-GI diet was feasible and acceptable in this sample and facilitated control of postprandial glucose. A larger study is needed to determine the effect of a low-GI diet on maternal and infant outcomes.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Birth Weight
  • Blood Glucose / analysis*
  • Blood Glucose Self-Monitoring
  • Body Weight
  • Diabetes, Gestational / blood*
  • Diabetes, Gestational / diet therapy*
  • Diet*
  • Feasibility Studies
  • Female
  • Glucose Intolerance / blood*
  • Glucose Intolerance / diet therapy*
  • Glycated Hemoglobin A / analysis
  • Glycemic Index*
  • Humans
  • Hyperglycemia / prevention & control
  • Middle Aged
  • Patient Compliance
  • Pilot Projects
  • Postprandial Period
  • Pregnancy
  • Pregnancy Trimester, Third
  • Young Adult


  • Blood Glucose
  • Glycated Hemoglobin A
  • hemoglobin A1c protein, human