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BlogDiabetics and Ramadan

Diabetics and Ramadan

Dr. Maan Hezi

Diabetics are advised to take necessary precautions and consult their physician before deciding to fast during the Holy Month of Ramadan.

Diabetics who choose to fast need to be aware of the potential health risks. They must also be ready to adhere to the recommendations of their healthcare team in order to achieve a safer fasting experience

Why medical assessment is important before or during Ramadan?

The decision to fast carries an assortment of potential risks and complications for individuals with diabetes. and he should be aware of it.
A medical assessment and educational counseling on physical activity, meal planning, glucose monitoring, and dosage and timing of medications must be part of the process of preparing for Ramadan.

While most Type 2 diabetics are able to fast without complication, some dietary and medication adjustments are usually required.
Individuals with diabetes, both Type 1 and Type 2, who choose to fast should keep a watchful eye on their health and should monitor their blood glucose regularly and frequently.

Generally advised not to fast

  • Poorly controlled diabetes.
  • Elderly patients who require insulin.
  • Children, and the acutely ill or frail.
  • Pregnant women who need insulin.
  • Breastfeeding mothers, whether they have Type 1 or Type 2 diabetes.

Hypoglycemia (low blood sugar) is a significant risk in fasting diabetics.
Symptoms of Hypoglycemia are severe hunger, fatigue, exhaustion, dizziness, headache, blurred vision, shaking hands, sweating, and increased heart rate. and eventually hypoglycemic coma
Patients experiencing these symptoms are advised to immediately break their fast.

Advice to Diabetics who are cleared to fast by their healthcare team:

  • Drink plenty of water between Iftar and Suhoor.
  • Avoid over indulging in sweets and fats.
  • Check their blood sugar regularly.
  • Break their fast immediately if they feel unwell or if their blood sugar drops below 60mg.
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