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THE DETRIMENTS OF DIABETES AND RAMADAN FASTING

  • April 22, 2022
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For any diabetic patient, skipping meals or not eating any meal throughout the day could result in dangerously low or high blood sugar levels. The month of Ramadan has begun on April 2nd, 2022 and it will last till May 2nd, 2022. People belonging to Islamic culture, fast during the month of Ramadan by abstinence from food and drink every day from dawn to sunset. The key benefit of fasting is it promotes Autophagy in which our body's cells clean out any damaged or unnecessary components, and boosted autophagy protects against several diseases such as Cancer and Alzheimer’s. 

 According to medical science, fasting impact our body in various ways - from headache to digestive issues and from dehydration to orthostatic hypotension. Human beings need to fuel the body with at least three meals a day especially for diabetic patients as it can lead to hypoglycemia when the sugar levels drop too low or even diabetic ketoacidosis - where the body starts producing excess blood acids which can be life-threatening and demand immediate hospital treatment.

Fasting during Ramadan for diabetics is not so beneficial, especially in the patients with limited access to medicinal care, hypoglycaemic unawareness, or unbalanced glycaemic control. It puts faster’s body through stress no matter if that person is living with any condition, any disease, or healthy. However, adhering to religious norms is important and something which cannot be ignored, for most people who have lifelong conditions like diabetes.

 So, what’s the solution to it? How can one stay healthy during the fasting of Ramadan, especially a diabetic person? Healthy fasting is feasible if you intake a healthy diet, in the right quantity. There are only two occasions in a day to eat during the month of Ramadan: In the dawn, time means before sunrise (Suhoor), and after sunset, which means in the evening (Iftar).

 As the world knows, breakfast is the most vital meal of the day. What you eat for the breakfast, fuels your body throughout the day. And during Ramadan celebration, it becomes more important as the body gets dependent on only two meals, which have hours of gap between.

 What to eat during Ramadan?

(I) Eggs

 Eggs are filled with lots of protein, vitamins, and nutrients. Eat boiled eggs or make an omelet and pair it up with bread.

 (II) Fruit Salad and Green vegetables

Eating fruits gives your body much-required minerals and vitamins. You’ll feel energized for hours and it also helps in keeping the body hydrated. You can consume watermelon, peaches, strawberries, oranges, cucumber, tomatoes, celery, spinach, and whichever fruit or vegetable is your favorite. Digging into juicy fruits and crunchy vegetables certainly satiates one’s hunger for hours.

 (III) Fish/Skinless Chicken

Fish is widely known as vitality-boosting food. But do not fry it as, during fasting, fried food causes bloating and also makes you thirstier. Either boil it or grill it. Chicken delivers vital nutrients which boost the body’s energy which is necessary to prevent weakness and right body functioning during fasting. If you do not eat non-veg, have tofu or chickpeas which are high in protein, dietary fiber, and phytochemicals that are crucial to staying healthy during this holy period.

(IV) Oatmeal

 Oatmeal is a delicious source of carbohydrates and proteins. To make your oatmeal tasty, you can also make an oatmeal smoothie that includes bananas and milk. Furthermore, try adding ample nuts which can your bowl of oatmeal more appetizing and fulfilling.

 (V) Nuts

Nuts are special gifts from nature to us. They're a major source of vitamins, minerals, and omega-3 fatty acids - offering a range of health benefits. Pair nuts with a glass of milk or a cup of yogurt.

 (VI) Fluids

 Intake fruit juices, smoothies, and milk. Avoid caffeinated drinks and beverages.

Do not overeat during evening meals (Iftar) as it can harm your body rapidly. Because you are not consuming anything in between Suhoor and Iftar, overindulging after keeping your gut empty all day long can adversely affect your health. Keep your Iftar meal well-balanced and nutritious. Cut down on high-fat foods and eat your meal slowly. If you are on insulin, it is advised to take your doctor’s advice so that they can guide you precisely about any alteration in insulin intake timings and dosage.

 Here are some more beneficial tips for diabetic people during Ramadan fasting:

Drink plenty of water during Suhoor and Iftar

Monitor and keep a check on your sugar levels more accurately (Before meals and bedtime)

In Type-II diabetes, consume simple sugar such as glucose and seek medical help if your blood sugar levels are over 250

Drink sugar-free and decaffeinated drinks to avoid dehydration, dizziness, weakness, and anxiety

Consult your doctor if you are planning to fast or have already started fasting and observe significant changes in your health

 Say no to too much sugary and fatty foods

Type-I and Type-II diabetic patients should be more cautious about their health during Ramadan fasting. For the one who's living with diabetes, it is crucial to get blood glucose levels tested by health care professionals – to manage diabetes during Ramadan and prevent further complications.

XYZ diagnostics centre provides a complete diabetes health checkup package that meticulously tests health complications related to diabetes and helps in controlling and managing the same.