Fasting has a number of health benefits if done properly. But fasting in this sweltering heat can have a negative impact if you do not take the necessary precautions, and this can lead to constipation, heart burns, dehydration, irritability or lack of concentration.
What are some of the benefits of fasting?
- It promotes weight loss
- It helps remove toxins from the body
- It lowers LDL cholesterol and triglycerides
- It plays a major role in stabilizing insulin sensitivity
- It provides a better control on blood pressure and diabetes
- It leads to a state of increased mental well-being
What are the bodily changes that occur during fasting?
In the normal state glucose is the main source of energy which is stored in muscles and liver. During fasting, glucose is used first followed by fats once the glucose runs out.
How should one take proper care of their body during fasting?
- Eating a healthy balanced diet should be the top priority in your Suhoor and Iftar. A balanced diet includes just the right amount of carbohydrates, proteins, fats, and vitamins. So fill up your plates with fruits (pick one from every color), vegetables, bread, cereals, potatoes, lean meat, fish and dairy products.
- Suhoor should not be skipped, as it provides the strength needed for fasting. It should be rich in wholesome foods.
- Iftar (breaking the fast) usually begins with dates, start by drinking plenty of water to rehydrate the body, along with fresh juices, soup, fruits, and vegetables, followed by the main course. Avoid binge eating and late night meals.
- Avoid food and drinks that have a high sugar content, as it suddenly shoots up your sugar levels.
- Avoid deep fried food during your meals as this can cause heartburn, acidity, and in severe cases, GERD. Instead, substitute the fried food with grilled or baked alternatives.
- Drink plenty of fluids during the non-fasting period in order to rehydrate the body and flush away toxins.
- People who are suffering from Diabetes and Hypertension should consult a doctor before fasting and take their medications as advised.
- Stay active throughout the day and contribute positively to the community.
Dr. Zeeshan Anwar
Aster Clinic (Al Rafa Polyclinic), International City