Activity patterns, body composition and muscle function during Ramadan in a Middle-East Muslim country

Sebastien Racinais, J D Périard, C K Li, J Grantham

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24 Citations (Scopus)


This study investigated the effects of Ramadan on activity patterns, body composition and muscle function. 11 moderately active Muslim males were screened 1 month and 1 week before, in the last week of, and 1 month after Ramadan. Activity patterns were assessed during 72 h using a tri-axial accelerometer, body composition was evaluated via bio-electrical impedance and muscle function during maximal isometric contractions with EMG recordings. Data showed a modification of the activity pattern during Ramadan with a higher level of activity from 02:00 to 05:00 h (29±26, 364±323 and 27±22 steps.h - 1 before, during and after Ramadan, respectively, P<0.05). However, total daily energy expenditure was similar during all testing periods (506±156, 542±219 and 545±207 - 1, respectively), partly explaining the lack of influence of Ramadan on body mass (70.9±11, 70.0±9 and 70.8±9 Kg, respectively) and composition (all P>0.05). Maximal force, associated electrical activity and neuromuscular efficiency (torque/EMG ratio) were maintained during Ramadan (torque: 254.6±30 N.m - 1, Neuromuscular efficiency: 1.0±0.4 a.u.) to levels observed before (244.3±26 N.m, 1.1±0.5 a.u.) and after the holy month (252.5±31 N.m, 1.1±0.5 a.u.). In summary, our data suggest that the influence of Ramadan should be considered as a modification in the distribution of activity times during the day.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)641-6
Number of pages6
JournalInternational Journal of Sports Medicine
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2012
Externally publishedYes


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