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Managing Your Diabetes During Ramadan


Muslims who fast during Ramadan must abstain from eating, drinking, taking oral medications, and smoking; however there are no restrictions on food or fluid intake between sunset and dawn. Most people consume two meals per day during this month, one after sunset and the other before dawn. In 2021, Ramadan takes place Tuesday April 13th to Wednesday May 12th.  Eid al Fitr 2021 will be celebrated on Tuesday May 13th. The holy month of Ramadan is a time for friends and family to gether and to focus on fasting and prayers.  This year in particular will be challenging due to COVID-19.  People are encouraged to spend thoughtful time alone or with immediate family and to stay safe.  


Pre-Ramadan Medical Assessment

It is important that you speak with your diabetes team about your wish to observe Ramadan. The diabetes team will perform a pre-Ramadan medical assessment (1-3 months before Ramadan) if possible.  It is also recommended that you follow-up with your diabetes team following Ramadan.


During this appointment you will learn about the following:

  • Importance of glucose monitoring during fasting and non fasting hours
  • To stop the fast if your blood glucose is less than 4.0 mmol/L
  • To stop the fast if your blood glucose is higher than 14.0 mmol/L
  • To stop the fast if you feel ill
  • Medication adjustment (pills and/or insulin) 
  • Meal planning to avoid hypoglycemia and dehydration during fast
  • The appropriate meal choices to avoid postprandial hyperglycemia
  • Advice on the timing and intensity of physical activity during fasting
  • Advice on adjustments of medications (below)






Recommended Changes to Treatment Regimen in Patients with Type 2 Diabetes who Fast during Ramadan


For access to a PDF copy of the above information, please click here.


Diabetes and Ramadan Practical Guidelines are also available from the International Diabetes Federation in collaboration with the Diabetes and Ramadan (DAR) International Alliance.


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