When done right, fasting can bring about benefits to both your spirituality and your overall health. Despite not eating or drinking for long hours during the day, it is important to ensure that you have adequate nutrition. Follow these health tips to ensure you leave Ramadan at the peak of your health.
1. Drink lots of water
It is essential for Muslims who are fasting to drink at least eight glasses of fluids during suhoor and iftar. Though water is the best option, you can also fill up with fluids such as juices and milk.
Replenishing your fluids is vital to reduce your risk of dehydration during fasting. But do note that it would be best to cut down on caffeinated drinks such as tea and coffee as it promotes fluid loss. Plus, it’ll be best if you can also reduce your intake of salty or spicy food which would make you more thirsty.
2. Don’t skip suhoor
Skipping suhoor is tempting especially if you want to enjoy uninterrupted sleep. However, skipping suhoor would encourage overeating during iftar which will have negative effects such as unhealthy weight gain.
Also, when you skip suhoor, your body will naturally rely on your previous meal for nutrition and energy. Thus, you’re more likely to feel tired and dehydrated. Suhoor is key to providing you with sufficient energy to go about your day.
3. Be mindful of what you eat during iftar
It might be appealing to feast during iftar since you’ve fasted for the last 12 hours. Do keep in mind that your iftar meal should be a healthy and well-balanced meal. You should divide your iftar meal into three parts which include a quarter of complex carbohydrates, another quarter of protein and fill half of your plate with vegetables.
You might want to consider eating warm soup to start off your meal. It will not only comfort your stomach after a long day of fasting, but it also replenishes your body with fluids and help prepare the digestive system. For those who suffer from dizziness or headache due to low blood sugar, it recommended that you consume two to three dates to replenish your sugar levels.
Furthermore, you should take your time and savour each mouthful of food. Overeating or overconsumption of unhealthy food will result in indigestion and potentially unhealthy weight gain.
4. Reduce your consumption of unhealthy food
Processed, instant and fried food are tempting to have during iftar especially since you want to treat yourself. These fatty foods will actually cause you to feel tired and sluggish and can potentially make fasting the next day more difficult. It is best to limit your intake of food with high salt and sugar content. Instead, Muslims should consume foods that are rich in fibre since they take a longer time to digest and will ultimately make you full longer.
5. Eat more fruits and vegetables
Fruits and vegetables are great sources of vitamins and minerals. Since you’ll be fasting for long hours, it is important to have sufficient nutrients and antioxidants to prevent you from falling ill.
Plus, it promotes good digestion and averts constipation due to a change in your daily routine. There’s no better way to get yourself to eat healthily than by mixing variations of colourful vegetables and fruits.
6. Add more protein to your diet
Consuming sufficient amounts of protein is vital to keep the cells of your body healthy and strong. Protein can come in varying forms such as meats, eggs, dairy products and even legumes. Moreover, sufficient levels of protein will increase your satiety levels and decrease the temptation for sugary food.
Staying healthy is vital during Ramadan so that you can perform your ibadah and ensure that you observe this holy month at optimum strength. It’s all the little things that will allow you to be a better Muslim.