Three different references, three different answers. I guess the best answer is to ask the lab faculty before your test.....
A fasting blood test is a blood sample taken from a person who has not eaten for at least 8 hours. Usually, the blood sample is taken early in the morning.
Examples of blood tests that may be done after a period of fasting include fasting blood sugar (fasting plasma glucose) test and lipid profile (cholesterol and triglycerides).
Patients who are scheduled for a lipid profile test should fast (except for water) for 12-14 hours before the blood sample is drawn. If the patient's cholesterol is to be fractionated, he or she also should avoid alcohol for 24 hours before the test. http://www.healthatoz.com/healthatoz/Atoz/ency/cholesterol_test.jsp
To get accurate results, you should fast for 9 to 12 hours before the test. The health care provider may advise you to stop taking drugs that can affect the test. (See "Special considerations.") You may drink water during the fast, but other beverages such as coffee, tea, or soda may affect results.
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