This recent finding underscores our nutritional theory about the consequences of the dramatic increase in carbohydrate consumption and the changes to our food supply over time. Our diets have shifted from a modest carbohydrate content of 35-40% in 1970 to over 80% in recent decades. It truly can’t get much worse.  

The dietary shift even puts those who have minimal to no insulin resistance at risk, since the dramatic increase in insulin resistance that occurs during pregnancy drives patients to seek out food from a supply chain that is drowning in carbohydrates. The development of Pregnancy Induced Hypertension (PIH) is one of the most common disorders we see coming out of this unfortunate trend.  

It is impossible to take a toxin (carbohydrates) and increase consumption to current levels without seeing a dramatic increase in health problems across the board. Between the 1950s and 1970s, there was a great deal of pressure placed on women to avoid carbohydrates, which were known to have negative consequences on our health. At that time, a pregnant woman who was seen indulging in carbohydrates would receive social backlash from peers advising against it. 

However, today, we accept indulgence as the norm–the public, and even some medical authorities, condone dramatic weight gains during pregnancy, ignoring the dangers of excessive carbohydrate consumption. I find it unbelievable that our healthcare system fails to recognize this shift and take necessary action. 

I hope someday we will look back and realize how our medical system has failed by not focusing on proper nutrition. Unfortunately, Pregnancy Induced Hypertension is just the tip of the iceberg.  The unborn infant likely suffers just as much or more than the mother and may develop lifelong health effects that may be responsible for decreasing the average life expectancy of the child’s generation.

Dr. Michael Fox, MD
Advanced Reproductive Specialists
Jacksonville Center for Reproductive Medicine