A warning has been issued to people with diabetes regarding the effect of not washing your hands after peeling or touching fruit and then taking a blood glucose reading, as an inaccurate reading may result from residue on the hands.
The study, by scientists at the Juntendo University Graduate School of Medicine in Japan and published in the journal Diabetes Care, has shown that people who didn’t wash after handling fruit had levels of blood glucose that were extremely high, compared with those who had washed their hands with tap water after peeling the fruit and who had the same readings as people who hadn’t touched any fruit at all.
The research involved monitoring fasting healthy volunteers who were free of diabetes, and who peeled oranges, grapes or kiwi fruit, with blood samples being taken an hour later.
It found that washing your hands with tap water after peeling fruit, and not an alcohol swab, is crucial for the accurate monitoring of blood glucose levels using samples from the fingertip prick test.
Takahisa Hirose, lead author of the study, commented “Unfortunately, a careful check of the instruction manuals of all glucose monitors available in Japan showed no recommendation in any of the manuals for hand washing with water before glucose monitoring using blood from the fingertip.”

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