Even minor fluctuations in blood sugar levels during pregnancy increases the risk of a woman suffering from type 2 diabetes, a Canadian study has revealed.
Scientists at the Toronto-based Institute for Clinical Evaluative Sciences (ICES), who led the study, found that women with mild abnormalities in their blood sugar during pregnancy were 2.5 times more likely to develop type 2 diabetes as compared to those who had completely normal glucose testing.
The researchers examined 15,000 pregnant women aged 20-49 in Ontario, who had a mild abnormality on their glucose challenge tests (GCT), but who did not ultimately get diagnosed with gestational diabetes.
They said that the women were compared to about 60,000 pregnant women who did not have abnormalities on their GCT, and that the participants were followed for 6.4 years after delivery.
According to them, the women who had had an abnormal GCT were 2.5 times more likely to develop type 2 diabetes compared to those who had not had an abnormal GCT.
"These results show that even a mild abnormality in glucose testing during pregnancy is associated with an increased risk of diabetes later in life.
Although we already know that women who've had gestational diabetes need to be monitored, the study suggests that even women with mild glucose abnormalities might benefit from diabetes prevention and detection strategies," says Baiju Shah, ICES researcher.