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What Are the Fasting Requirements for the Glucose Lipid Panel Blood Test?

Updated July 19, 2017

A fasting glucose panel and a fasting lipid panel are two different blood tests. Both tests may be performed from a single drawing of blood, and one period of fasting is usually sufficient prior to blood being drawn for both tests.

Glucose Panel

The glucose panel measures blood sugar levels and is used to check for the possibility of diabetes or to monitor those already diagnosed with diabetes. Fasting glucose panels require you to avoid any food or drink, other than water, for six to eight hours prior to the test.

Lipid Panel

A lipid panel measures the amount of cholesterol and triglycerides in your blood. Lipid panels usually require fasting with no food or drink, other than water, for nine to 12 hours prior to the test.

Results

Up to 100 mg/dl of glucose are normal blood sugar levels. Total cholesterol counts below 200 mg/dl, and triglyceride counts below 150 mg/dl are optimum.

Fasting Exceptions

According to The Journal of the American Medical Association, fasting may not always be necessary for accurate lipid panel results. Glucose panels are sometimes drawn without fasting to establish a blood sugar baseline for comparison.

Considerations

It may be ideal to schedule blood drawing early in the morning so fasting time passes overnight while sleeping. Have a backup driver with you in the event that either the fasting or the blood drawing affects your ability to drive. Always follow fasting instructions from your physician accurately for optimum results.

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About the Author

Jullie Chung writes regularly for various websites. She is a nationally certified fitness trainer and performance enhancement specialist through the National Academy of Sports Medicine and trains regularly in yoga, flatwater kayaking, boxing and mixed martial arts. An avid outdoor fan, she regularly hikes, climbs and trail runs.