Are Big Babies & Gestational Diabetes Related?

by Mishal Ali Zafar
Originally Published: 

In the new age of the internet, it's easy for you to drive yourself crazy searching for symptoms and diseases, especially when you're pregnant. There are a million questions and complications out there for you to Google, and gestational diabetes is one of them. Having a bigger than normal baby is often associated with it, but does a big baby mean you have gestational diabetes?

It's important to first understand the relationship between baby size and diabetes. According to the American Diabetes Association (ADA), gestational diabetes occurs in women who have high blood glucose levels during pregnancy. The ADA explained that when you have gestational diabetes, your pancreas produces more and more insulin, but the insulin doesn't get used, so it keeps your blood glucose levels high. The extra glucose in your blood can then go through your placenta to your baby, giving them high blood glucose levels, too, along with increased insulin, noted the ADA. This causes the baby to store the extra energy as fat, which can lead to Macrosomia or a "fat" baby.

Romper spoke to Dr. Eva Martin, founder of Elm Tree Medical Inc., who says that while there is a correlation between the two, having a bigger baby isn't necessarily a tool for diagnosis. "Women with gestational diabetes are at risk of having a larger baby, but having a bigger baby definitely doesn't mean you have gestational diabetes," Martin says.

If you are concerned about your health or the health of your baby during pregnancy, you should definitely talk to your doctor, who will be able to properly evaluate and test your situation, the baby's health, and your blood glucose levels to give you an accurate diagnosis. In the meantime, relax, don't freak out, and try to take a break from the black hole of internet self-diagnosis.

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