FRIDAY, March 20, 2020 (HealthDay News) — Use of the Fasting Algorithm for Singaporeans with Type 2 Diabetes (FAST) facilitates safe intermittent fasting for patients with diabetes during Ramadan, according to a study published in the March/April issue of the Annals of Family Medicine.

Zheng Kang Lum, from the National University of Singapore, and colleagues randomly assigned 97 participants to either FAST (46) or usual care without FAST (51). Participants had a baseline glycated hemoglobin (HbA1c) level ≤9.5 percent and intention to fast for ≥10 days during Ramadan.

The researchers found that HbA1c improvement during Ramadan was greater in the intervention group (−0.4 percent) versus the control group (−0.1 percent). In the intervention group, the mean fasting blood glucose level decreased (−3.6 mg/dL), while it increased (+20.9 mg/dL) in the control group. Additionally, mean postprandial glucose level showed greater improvement in the intervention group versus the control group (−16.4 mg/dL versus −2.3 mg/dL). Based on self-monitored blood glucose readings, there were more minor hypoglycemic events in the control group versus the intervention group (six versus four). The groups were similar with respect to glycemic variability and diabetes distress.

“Our findings emphasize the importance of efficacious, safe, and culturally tailored epistemic tools for diabetes management,” the authors write.

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