Fasting for Blood Work
Blood is an integral part of our body as it performs the function of a carrier which carries oxygen and nutrient and eliminates ammonia, carbon dioxide and other wasted items. It accounts for 7% to 8% weight of human body, which is roughly equal to 4.5-6 quarts. Blood is a mixture of 4,000 different components. Among them red cells, white cells, platelets, and plasma are the common components. Sometimes, you suffer from disease which is not getting cured using ordinary medicines. Then, in this case your doctor suggests some tests which must be done when you are in fasting.
Fasting for Blood Work Why?
Common disease which require fasting before tests are high blood pressure, sugar etc. Common tests that are performed during fasting are fasting metabolic panel,fasting glucose, fasting cholesterol, fasting lipid panel, HDL or triglyceride tests. These tests monitor the level of sugar and cholesterol, so you should not take any sort of meals before undergoing through these tests. Otherwise, you will get wrong sugar and cholesterol level and your report will be of no use.
Fasting for Blood Work How Long
The question mostly asked is for how many hours we remain in fast. It all depends upon the type of test that will be performed. The most common tests with the time have been explained below:
Iron blood test
It is performed to check the amount of iron in your body and is very helpful to diagnose iron deficiency anemia. Usually, it is done early in the morning before taking any meals or medicines. So, usually you have to be in fast for a period of 12 hours.
Fasting blood glucose test
Fasting blood glucose test is performed to check the level of sugar in the blood. Doctors suggest this test to diagnose Diabetes and Hyperglycemia in the patient. You should stop taking food and medicines at least 8-10 hours before the test. A sugar value of between 70 and100 milligrams per deciliter (mg/dL) is considered to be the normal in this test.
It is also called Blood cholesterol test. It is performed to check the amount of cholesterol (fat). Presence of Excessive cholesterol in the blood means fat is building up in your arteries and thereby increasing the chance of heart attack. So, in order to avoid the risk of heart attack, it is better to diagnose the cholesterol level. You need to be in fasting for 10 to 12 hours, but you may take water during this time. There are various types of cholesterol tests and when they are performed simultaneously, it is called Lipid Profile.
Lipid Profile is done to check the level of Bad (HDL) cholesterol, Good (HDL) cholesterol, triglycerides and amount of total cholesterol.
Gamma Glutamyl Transferase Test
In medical terminology, we also represent it with abbreviated form GGT. In this test, you have to be in fast for 24 hours. This test is performed to identify liver’s diseases. Weakness and fatigue, weight loss, nausea, vomiting, and yellow discoloration of the skin (jaundice) are the popular symptoms of liver disease and in this case, GGT is a key test for doctors. So, please don’t take alcohol and cigarettes during fasting as well.