App to help diabetics fast safely during Ramadan
The Emirates Diabetes Society estimates that there are 1,000,000 people with diabetes from ages 20-79 in the UAE.
Dubai - Dietary recommendations need to be individualised and tailored to patients' lifestyle requirements, age, comorbidities and other medical needs.
Published: Sat 27 May 2017, 8:51 PM
Last updated: Sat 27 May 2017, 10:59 PM
A 'Ramadan nutrition plan' Web application has been launched to help diabetics plan meals during the holy month of Ramadan.
Dietary recommendations need to be individualised and tailored to patients' lifestyle requirements, age, comorbidities and other medical needs. During this month, there is a drastic change in eating patterns compared to the other months of the year.
Accordingly, the Diabetes and Ramadan (DAR) International Alliance has developed the Ramadan Nutrition Plan (RNP), a Web-based tool designed to help in delivering patient-specific medical nutrition therapy during Ramadan fasting. The meal plans are categorised in several daily caloric targets.
The diabetes management strategy has been taken by DAR in partnership with International Diabetes Federation (IDF) and Emirates Diabetes Society.
"Last year, we released the 'Guidelines on diabetes management during Ramadan', to provide a universal direction for all those involved in working with the patients. Our long term goal is to bring about a progressive behaviour change among fasting patients and communities," said Dr Mohamed Hassanein, chairman of DAR International Alliance and consultant in endocrinology at Dubai Hospital.
Studies demonstrated how there was no significant change in a patients' overall health, with a marginal improvement in blood pressure, when diabetes is managed effectively. However, this information cannot be generalised, as some patients can improve in health, while some might get worse.
A study presented by Dr Fatheya Alawadi, head of the endocrine department, Dubai Hospital, on 'Attitudes and behaviour of people with diabetes during Ramadan', highlighted how patients benefited from proper pre-Ramadan education and counselling.
"Patients from high risk groups include - Type I Diabetes patients, Type II patients on insulin therapy, pregnant woman with gestational diabetes and patients with kidney disease," said Dr Hassanein. "Structured diabetes education is all about giving patients the knowledge to make informed decisions regarding their behaviour and enabling them to effectively self-manage the condition."
"A highly individualised management plan and close follow-up are essential to avoid the development of health complications among the patients during Ramadan," said Dr Abdulrazzak Al Madani, president of Emirates Diabetes Society.
The society estimates that there are 1,000,000 people with diabetes from ages 20-79 in the UAE. The app can be downloaded from the website of DAR International Alliance from the link www.daralliance.org/daralliance/map/