The effect of Ramadan fasting on maternal serum lipids, cortisol levels and fetal development

Obstetrics and Gynecology Department, Gaziantep University, Gaziantep, Turkey.
Archives of Gynecology (Impact Factor: 1.36). 05/2008; 279(2):119-23. DOI: 10.1007/s00404-008-0680-x
Source: PubMed


To determine the effects of fasting during the month of Ramadan on fetal development and maternal serum cortisol and lipid profile.
This study was performed in Obstetrics and Gynecology Department of Gaziantep University Hospital, between 23 September 2006 and 23 October 2006 (during the month of Ramadan). Thirty-six consecutive healthy women with uncomplicated pregnancies of 20 weeks or more, who were fasting during Ramadan, were included in the study group (group 1). The control group (group 2) consisted of 29 healthy pregnant women, who were not fasting during the study period. For evaluating Ramadan's effect on fetus, Doppler ultrasonography was performed on all subjects in the beginning and then once a week until the end of Ramadan for the following measurements: increase of fetal biparietal diameter (BPD), increase of fetal femur length (FL), increase of estimated fetal body weight (EFBW), fetal biophysical profile (BPP), amniotic fluid index (AFI), and umbilical artery systole/diastole (S/D) ratio. Maternal serum cortisol, triglyceride, total cholesterol, low-density lipoprotein (LDL), high-density lipoprotein (HDL), very low density lipoprotein (VLDL), and LDL/HDL ratio were also evaluated before and after Ramadan.
No significant difference was found between the two groups for the fetal age, maternal weight gain (kilogram), estimated fetal weight gain (EFWG), fetal BPP, AFI, and umbilical artery S/D ratio. In the fasting group, the maternal serum cortisol levels on day 20 were significantly higher than the initial levels obtained 1 week prior to Ramadan (p < 0.05). Although no significant increases were observed in total cholesterol and triglyceride levels in the fasting group, these increases were significantly higher than those in the control group (p < 0.05). LDL and VLDL levels showed a non-significant decrease at the end of the Ramadan. HDL levels showed a slight increase, but LDL/HDL ratios were significantly decreased in fasting group (p < 0.05).
The results of this study showed that maternal serum cortisol level was elevated while LDL/HDL ratio were decreased in healthy women with uncomplicated pregnancies of 20 weeks or more, who were fasting during Ramadan. No untoward effect of Ramadan was observed on intrauterine fetal development.

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Available from: Hülya Çiçek, Dec 18, 2015
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    • "Fasting leads to decrease in serum glucose, insulin, lactate and carnitine and increase in free fatty acids, hydroxybutyrate, cholesterol and triglyceride levels (Malhotra et al. 1989; Dikensoy et al. 2009). Maternal substrate supply, placental transfer of substrates and fetal growth potential which is provided by genome are essential for fetal development (Cunningham et al. 2010). "
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    ABSTRACT: In Islamic religion, daytime fasting during the month called Ramadan is an annual practice. In this study, we aimed to investigate the effect of Ramadan fasting and maternal hypoalbuminaemia on neonatal growth parameters. A prospective case-control study was conducted in Diyarbakir and Istanbul, Turkey. The sample size of fasting group was 168 and that of non-fasting group was 170. Demographic characteristics, obstetrics ultrasonographic findings and laboratory parameters of the participants were recorded. Neonatal anthropometric parameters and placental weight were noted. The mean placental weight was significantly higher in the fasting group (p = 0.037). Also, in the fasting group, pregnant women with hypoalbuminaemia had significantly higher placental weight (p = 0.009). In conclusion, the mean placental weight in the fasting group was significantly higher. Also a significant correlation between placental weight and maternal serum albumin level was observed in the fasting group.
    Full-text · Article · Oct 2015 · Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology
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    • "Some Studies in Muslim countries have shown that fasting in Ramadan may improve lipid profile6,7 but there are opposite result in others.8,9 Some studies are limited to special group.6,10 In this study, changes in HDL and other lipid profile have been evaluated in Iran as a Muslim country with different culture and food pattern from previous studies. "
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    ABSTRACT: Background and Objectives: There are conflicting data on the effects of fasting in Ramadan in Muslim countries on Lipid profile. We aimed to evaluate the effect of fasting on lipid profiles and some ratios which are strong for predicting cardiovascular disease. Methods: This prospective observational study was done in Iran in 2012. Forty three persons were enrolled into the study. Their anthropometric measurement was done. Fasting plasma high density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL), low density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL), total cholesterol (TC), and triglyceride (TG) were measured at baseline and after one month fasting during Ramadan by standard methods. Paired t test were used to compare lipid profiles before and after the intervention. Results : High density lipoprotein cholesterol was 33.10±6.53 mg/dL at baseline and increased to 42.49±8.44mg/dL (P <0.001). Fasting in Ramadan decreased serum LDL/HDL and TG/HDL ratios significantly (P <0.001). Triglyceride levels were unaffected. Low density lipoprotein and total cholesterol levels increased (P=0.008). Changes did not differ significantly between men and women. Conclusion: Fasting in Ramadan is effective to ameliorate High density lipoprotein, and LDL/HDL and TG/HDL ratios. Omitting one meal may be considered to control High density lipoprotein level.
    Full-text · Article · Jul 2014 · Pakistan Journal of Medical Sciences Online
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    • "Religious fasting is particularly observed among populations in the eastern regions of Turkey [1] [2] [3]. Fasting may lead to dehydration and metabolic instability [4] [5]. Sufficient amniotic fluid and uteroplacental circulation are mandatory for fetal development and wellbeing [6]. "
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    ABSTRACT: To investigate the effects of long-lasting maternal fasting on fetal biometry, amniotic fluid volume, fetal Doppler parameters, and neonatal outcomes. The present study, conducted at Solhan State Hospital, Bingol, Turkey, between July and August 2013 recruited 82 healthy and otherwise normal pregnant women with a gestational age of 29weeks or more who were fasting for at least 20days. The control group comprised 87 healthy non-fasting women matched for maternal age, parity, gestational age. Fetal parameters were measured at the beginning and the end of the fasting month. Perinatal outcomes were compared between the groups. There were no significant differences between the groups in fetal biometry, fetal Doppler parameters, or neonatal outcomes. In the fasting group, however, there was a significantly greater decrease in amniotic fluid index during the fasting period (P<0.001). The number of women who initially had a normal amniotic fluid measurement and subsequently developed oligohydramnios was also significantly higher in the religious fasting group (P<0.05). Fetal development, Doppler parameters, and neonatal outcomes were not significantly affected in healthy fasting women; however, there was a significant association between fasting and amniotic fluid index. These findings mandate more frequent follow-up visits for this group of women.
    Full-text · Article · Apr 2014 · International journal of gynaecology and obstetrics: the official organ of the International Federation of Gynaecology and Obstetrics
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