I felt like I was rocking pregnancy after my first trimester was nothing but puking and feeling nauseated from any smell – including all the herbs I planted in the garden outside my kitchen window. When I took the dreaded gestational diabetes test (I still can’t drink or eat anything with artificial orange flavour), I was shocked to find out my glucose levels indicated I had it. My immediate reaction was embarrassment, shame, and I took it very personally. I felt I had a pretty healthy pregnancy and ate well; I went to yoga twice a week and attended zumba classes. I walked everywhere. I really didn’t understand why I had it, and thought I had done something wrong. I felt guilty. My midwife talked to me, and assured me that it was all hormonal and that it would pass after the baby was born.
If you have gestational diabetes it is not your fault! You did nothing wrong to get this medical condition, & it is not even in your control. Work with your care provider to find the right medical plan for you and be kind to yourself.
The gestational diabetes clinic I went to in Vancouver was friendly. I remember being surprised, jealous and a little judgy when I saw other patients show up with their venti caramel mocha frappuccinos, while I dutifully drank 3 litres of water every day. Lucky for me, I didn’t really have any cravings and was happy to just have water as long as it was cold with ice in it.
I managed my GD with exercise and diet. After eating, I’d go for a big walk or have dance parties with my baby belly in my living room. Exercise during pregnancy is so important, but even more so if you are trying to keep your glucose levels normal. Dancing lifts your spirits too, which releases oxytocin, so I highly recommend it, even if you don’t have GD. (Truth is, I recommend all types of dancing if you’re human – even if you’re not a pregnant human!) My numbers stayed low enough for the doctor to dismiss me from the clinic, but I kept the kit to keep checking my numbers. I was still obsessed with tracking my glucose level after meals, and it was really important to me.
At my baby shower I really wanted to have some desserts for my guests, but they had to be low sugar so that I could indulge too.
I had already done a lot of trial and error baking with several different types of flours over the past few years. I was getting accustomed with how to create my own recipes, especially with coconut flour. The secret would be to find a middle ground of yummy, and chocolaty…but not healthy tasting! These are supposed to be indulgent celebratory cupcakes, after all, not carrot sticks.
This easy recipe will yield about 12-14 cupcakes.
Here’s what you need to create your tasty treat:
1/2 cup of coconut flour
1/2 cup 100% raw cacao powder
1/2 tsp sea salt
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 cup olive oil
1 cup unsweetened applesauce
1 jar 100% fruit spread
Preheat oven to 375 degrees
Line muffin tin with cupcake papers
Combine first four ingredients in a small bowl
Beat eggs, olive oil and applesauce together
Mix dry ingredients with wet ingredients
Fill the cupcake holders about half full
And put in the oven
Set a timer for 10 minutes.
When the timer goes off, take the cupcakes out, and scoop a small teaspoon of the fruit jam into the middle of each cupcake.
Put the tray back in the oven and set your timer for another ten minutes
When they are done, you can either eat them as they are or put another dollop of fruit spread on top of them!!
Now, while these “cupcakes” do not have a massive heap of icing on them, and the jam topping is exactly how I served them, I later discovered coconut milk icing which is sooooooooo delicious and incredibly easy to make. This is a nice option to have for your guests if you like. To be honest, this recipe is so amazing, I make this icing for every dessert I ever make.
Coconut Milk Icing
Put a can of coconut milk in the freezer overnight. (Aroy-D brand is the best for this recipe.) The next day when you open it, just scoop out the coconut into a medium sized bowl, and leave the water. Add half a tsp of vanilla extract and use beaters to beat it into fluffy icing. You can use confectioners icing sugar to thicken it if you want, (start with a quarter cup.) Just be aware of the extra sugar content you are adding to your dessert. (You can easily make powdered sugar by pulsing granulated maple sugar, or coconut sugar if you prefer in the food processor until it’s a fine powder, but just remember it will change the colour of your icing.) Add a bit of food coloring if you’d like to make them fancy. (this is where it makes a difference if you use coconut sugar or confectioners sugar.) Only use coconut icing on cooled desserts as it melts easily.
I always had a bowl or mason jar of this whipped concoction, and guests can help themselves to their own heaping of icing.
I hope you enjoy this dessert as much as I did. I’ve even made these for my daughter when she’s requested a treat but I don’t want her to have too much sugar. If you have gestational diabetes, first, don’t be hard on yourself!! Remember you have done nothing wrong to get this diagnosis. Now take your baby belly for a power walk or crank up your favourite song up and dance! Pick a great song to dance to, and put it on your playlist for birth.
Just for fun, the song I danced my face off to when I was pregnant and in early labour was called “Rug Rippin”. Check it out! I dare you not to start dancing!