Why You Must Fast Before Blood Tests

It’s time for your annual checkup with your doctor, some blood work has been done, and you receive a call a few days later about abnormal results. Now you must go to a hospital to get further testing, but before you get that blood test done again under hospital care, you are then told you must not eat or drink anything before your lab. Ever wonder why? Here are a few reasons why it’s a good thing to do so and other factors that come along with fasting.  

What you digest can affect your results

Fasting before a blood test is usually given for a time frame of eight to twelve hours. This may seem a bit bothersome to people who were used to their morning breakfast or dose of caffeine. It is important to note that the specific tests that need you to fast are for a good reason. Your digestive system should be empty (except for water) to get a clear view of deficiencies, measurements of specific functions, or levels such as iron. Otherwise, not fasting will result in corrode results and affect the bloodstream. It can also trigger, or alternate other factors of the real diagnosis being tested.

Fasting includes other factors besides food and liquid

You might think you are in the clear if you skipped your breakfast as you should have but then try to have your daily smoke of cigarette or going to the gym. Stop right there! You should know these are triggers for your blood results. Other factors such as chewing gum or exercise speed up the digestion which in return does not give exact results. This also includes alcohol and can’t be consumed.  

Your medication could be included in fasting

You must consult your doctor if taking your regular medication should be avoided or continued during fasting. If your doctor says you must avoid it, it is most likely because the medication requires you to take it with food or liquids. Remember, water will not affect your blood results and will be the only liquid consumed if necessary.

Forgot to Fast?

Accidentally ate or drank something other than water during fasting? You might want to reschedule. Again, the goal of fasting before a blood test is to not consume any food, liquids, alcohol, smoking, exercise or even gum of any sort so your digestive system is clear. If fasting has been broken, the consumption or action should be processed in your digestive system which speeds it up and then flows to the bloodstream thus affecting the blood results.  

Be in the clear with your blood results and let us see you today! From primary care and urgent care, we are here to help at OneSource Healthcare. We offer walk-in services for your convenience or you can contact us to schedule an appointment. Give us a call at 1(229) 439-1950 in Albany or call 1(229) 246-6417 in Bainbridge.