Diabetics are advised to take necessary precautions and consult their physician before deciding to fast during the Holy Month of Ramadan.
The decision to fast carries an assortment of potential risks and complications for individuals with diabetes. Individuals with diabetes who choose to fast during the Holy Month should obtain a medical assessment and specific advice on medication and dietary adjustments.
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.
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.
Diabetes mellitus is a medical condition where the body fails to process blood sugar in a normal way. For individuals with diabetes who choose to fast during Ramadan, several topics require special consideration and those with poorly controlled diabetes, elderly patients who require insulin, children, and the acutely ill or frail are generally advised not to fast.
Fasting is also not recommended for pregnant women who need insulin and for breastfeeding mothers, whether they have Type 1 or Type 2 diabetes. 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.