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Ramadan Ready: Preparing Your Mind and Body for a Month of Fasting and Reflection

Ramadan is the most sacred month for Muslims, during which they observe a fast from dawn till dusk.

Fasting during Ramadan is a spiritual obligation for Muslims, and it is also associated with several health benefits. Studies have shown that Ramadan fasting can lead to weight loss, improved insulin sensitivity, and better cardiovascular health. However, fasting for long hours can be challenging for many, and it is essential to follow some tips to maximise the benefits of fasting during Ramadan.

Ramadan Nutrition

YOUR NUTRITION DURING RAMADAN

The pre-dawn meal, also known as Suhoor, is an essential part of fasting during Ramadan. It is essential to start with a healthy meal that provides enough energy to last for the entire day. According to the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, a nutritious Suhoor should include complex carbohydrates, protein, and healthy fats [1]. Foods like oats, eggs, whole grain bread, fruits, and nuts are great options to start your day.

Dehydration can cause several health problems, especially during the hot summer months. It is crucial to drink plenty of water and other fluids during Ramadan to avoid dehydration. Studies have shown that Ramadan fasting can cause dehydration, especially among athletes and active individuals [2][3]. Make sure to drink at least eight glasses of water between Iftar and Suhoor. Drinking water before dawn and after breaking the fast is also highly recommended. Avoid sugary drinks and caffeine, as they can cause dehydration.

Overeating can lead to digestive problems and weight gain. It is essential to eat in moderation during Ramadan. Studies have shown that Ramadan fasting can lead to weight loss, but overeating during Iftar can offset this effect [4][5]. Break your fast with dates and water, and then have a light meal. Eat slowly and chew your food properly, as it helps to digest the food properly. Avoid fried and fatty foods, as they can cause digestive problems

YOUR TRAINING REGIMEN

Regular exercise is essential to maintain good health, especially during Ramadan. However, it is recommended to avoid strenuous exercise during the fasting hours. Studies have shown that Ramadan fasting can affect physical performance, but light exercises like walking, yoga, and stretching are great options to stay active during Ramadan [6][7]. It is best to exercise before Suhoor or after breaking the fast.

YOUR SLEEP & RECOVERY

training during Ramadan
Training & Mobility During Ramadan

Getting enough sleep is crucial for maintaining good health during Ramadan. Lack of sleep can cause fatigue, irritability, and difficulty in concentrating. Studies have shown that Ramadan fasting can affect sleep patterns [8][9]. It is recommended to sleep for at least six to eight hours per day. Try to maintain a regular sleep schedule and avoid staying up late at night. Ramadan is not just about fasting; it is also a time for spiritual growth and self-reflection. Use this time to read the Quran, attend religious lectures, and engage in charitable activities. Fasting is a great way to purify your body and soul, and it is essential to focus on spiritual growth during Ramadan.

In conclusion, fasting during Ramadan is a sacred obligation for Muslims, and it is associated with several health benefits. However, it is essential to follow some tips to maximise the benefits of fasting during Ramadan. Starting with a healthy meal, staying hydrated, avoiding overeating, exercising regularly, getting enough sleep, and focusing on spiritual growth are some of the key tips to maximise the benefits of fasting during Ramadan. By following these tips, you can ensure a healthy and fulfilling Ramadan experience.

If you have any unanswered questions regarding your health & wellness during Ramadan you can reach our Patient Care Team by clicking on the Chat button, or by filling in the Contact Form.

Sources:

  1. Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. The Importance of a Nutritious Suhoor During Ramadan. Available at: https://www.eatright.org/health/wellness/holidays-and-special-events/the-importance-of-a-nutritious-suhoor-during-ramadan
  2. Ghafarri et al. Effects of Ramadan fasting on hydration status in healthy adultsa randomized controlled trial using bioelectrical impedance vector analysis. Ann Nutr Metab. 2014;65(4):335-42. doi: 10.1159/000365003. Epub 2014 Jul 28.
  3. Seifi-Skishahr et al. Effect of Ramadan fasting on hydration status and body temperature in young female students in summer. J Educ Health Promot. 2014;3:71. doi: 10.4103/2277-9531.134973.
  4. Mokhtari et al. The impact of Ramadan intermittent fasting on body weight in overweight and obese individuals: A systematic review and meta-analysis. J Ethn Foods. 2019;6:6. doi: 10.1186/s42779-019-0006-7. eCollection 2019.
  5. Faris et al. Ramadan fasting decreases body fat but not protein mass. Int J Food Sci Nutr. 2002;53(2):143-7.
  6. Chaouachi et al. The effects of Ramadan intermittent fasting on athletic performance: Recommendations for the maintenance of physical fitness. J Sports Sci. 2009;27 Suppl 1:S53-63. doi: 10.1080/02640410903140589.
  7. Boukhris et al. Effect of Ramadan fasting on fatigue, mood, and physical performance in female athletes. Afr J Tradit Complement Altern Med. 2016;13(2):15-21. doi: 10.21010/ajtcam.v13i2.3.
  8. Bahammam et al. Sleep duration and daytime sleepiness during the month of Ramadan in healthy adults. Neurosciences (Riyadh). 2012;17(3):276-81.

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