Diabetes and Ramadan
Ramadan a month of blessings, is very near to the hearts of Muslims, in which Muslims fast every day. This blessed month becomes difficult for patients with diabetes mellitus to maintain their sugar levels during fasting. It is necessary to readjust medicines for diabetes mellitus for this month to avoid any complications.
Common complications faced by diabetics during this month are:
Hyperglycemia (increased level of sugar)
Hypoglycemia (decreased level of sugar)
DKA (Diabetic Ketoacidosis)
Thrombosis (formation of blood clots due to thick blood)
The basic concept of swapping doses of medicines
Usually, there are three meals breakfast, lunch, and dinner. The patient is, prescribed a heavy dose of medicines for diabetes in the morning, and, a smaller dose at night. Because the patient is sleeping at night and not eating anything, which will result in, progressively decreased level of blood sugar levels.
But in Ramadan, there are two meals iftar and suhoor.
The time of suhoor is 4:00 am (small meal)
The time of iftar is 6:00 pm (heavy meal)
Now the time of the fast starts from 4:00 am to 6:00 pm, which makes 14 hours in which a person is not allowed to eat or drink anything, after having a meal at suhoor, at 4:00 am. In these 14 hours, the level of sugar in the blood will decrease with the passage of time.
Likey it makes 10 hours, in which a person has taken his meal at the time of iftar, which is usually a heavy meal. In these 10 hours, there is a high level of sugar in the blood.
keeping the above in view, medicines for diabetes are swapped as;
A high dose that was taken in the morning on normal days is now taken at the time of iftar in Ramadan.
The small dose which was taken at night, to avoid a drop in blood sugar level during sleep, is now taken at the time of suhoor in Ramadan.
Other key features of management of diabetes in Ramadan
- Individualization: the same plan of swapping medicines doesn’t fit everyone.
Consultation with your doctor is necessary before the start of Ramadan.
For an online video, consultation click here.
- Pre-Ramadan medical assessment and having a discussion about complications and emergencies related to diabetes, with your doctor, is necessary.
- Eating a balanced diet.
- Light Exercise and avoiding dehydration.
- Regular monitoring of blood sugar level with a glucometer at home.