Latina women in the United States have a greater risk of developing diabetes during pregnancy (called gestational diabetes) compared to non-Latina white women.

More about diabetes during pregnancy

When a woman develops diabetes during pregnancy, it is called gestational diabetes.

It means that you have higher blood sugar levels while you are pregnant. It can affect your health and your baby’s health as well. Usually, your blood sugar levels will return to normal after you give birth. However, if you have gestational diabetes, then you are at higher risk for type 2 diabetes later.

In the United States, Latina women are much more likely to have diabetes during pregnancy than non-Latina white women. This also means that Latina women are at higher risk for type 2 diabetes if they have had gestational diabetes in the past. This study looked at over 8,000 Latina women- one group had diabetes during pregnancy and the other group did not. They found that Latina women with diabetes during pregnancy were often younger (average age was 39 vs. 45 in the group without), had higher blood sugar levels, and had bigger waists. Also, Latina women with diabetes during pregnancy were at a higher risk for things like: high cholesterol, high blood pressure, and more abdominal fat. Interestingly, the group with diabetes during pregnancy was not at a higher risk for heart disease. Although Latina women are more prone to have diabetes during pregnancy, in general, it was found that Latina women can actually live a longer life compared to non-Latina white women.

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