[ Nutrition ]

Diabetes in the time of Ramadan

Dr. These patients represent a challenge not only for themselves, but also for the professional care providers during this period that lasts a full month. A total of 63 subjects (56 with diabetes, seven healthy volunteers; 39 male, 24 female) had CGM performed during, before and after Ramadan fasting. The length of fasting has special consequences for people with diabetes, especially those taking insulin and the risk of complications increases with longer periods of fasting. Patients who are on metformin with or without glitazones, dipeptidyl peptidase 4 inhibitor, glucagon-like peptide I analogues, alpha-glucosidase inhibitors, are generally advised to continue the same due to a much lesser risk of hypoglycemia[3,4,5] and those on secretagogues or insulin are advised to decrease the dose of medication or adjust the timings, so as not to precipitate hypoglycemia. Bovine insulin was freely used in Pakistan before Humulin became available. Our bodies always try to maintain normal blood glucose (sugar) levels by producing hormones such as insulin and glucagon.

Therefore, early education and awareness are the keys to preventing new cases of Type 2 diabetes, which can occur as a result of a poor diet and sedentary lifestyle. Evidence-based scientific data will definitely help physicians caring for such patients to decide whether to advise patients with type 1 diabetes strongly or half-heartedly about fasting. Type 2 diabetes is also risky but the risk is low. Despite the hardships, compliance with Ramadan rules is widespread. Avoid adding sugar to drinks by adding an intense sweetener where needed such as Canderel, Sweetex, Hermesetas. Limit fried foods such as paratha, puri, samosas, chevera, pakoras, katlamas, fried kebabs and Bombay mix. Measure the amount of oil used in cooking (use 1-2 tablespoons for a four-person dish).

Other foods that will keep your blood glucose levels more stable through the fast include pitta bread, chapattis and semolina. It could also be a problem if your daily activities or work involve heavy physical exertion.

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