Fasting Ramadan in a Healthier Way
(Pixabay)

Fasting Ramadan in a Healthier Way

Al Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, May 13

This year, I decided to take drastic steps and make sure that my Ramadan would be healthy, specifically in terms of nutrition and sports. Unlike previous years, I wanted to make sure that everything I eat before beginning and after breaking the fast would be healthy. This began by preparing for Ramadan about a week before it started. To prepare myself, I refrained from eating solid foods for an entire week, went on a juice cleanse, and followed a diet of “intermittent fasting,” in which I ate in eight-hour intervals. I filled myself with water, coffee and herbal teas. A few days following the end of Ramadan, I also refrained from food for about three days, with the aim of cleaning the body of toxins, regulating the level of insulin in the blood, raising the growth rate of hormones, and getting rid of some unwanted fats. During the month of Ramadan itself, I made sure to follow a diet based on beneficial fats, proteins, and low in carbohydrates. All the while, I forced myself to stay away from popular Ramadan treats such as fried dough, sweets and pastries. I even refrained from eating dates, which are considered a healthy snack, because I wanted to maintain low blood sugar levels. It turns out that one date contains enough sugar to sustain the human body for a whole day. Regulating what I eat, and when, allowed me to finally break away from the emotional relationship I developed with food, particularly around Ramadan. I admit that there is one goal I failed to achieve, which is for Ramadan to be a month without any harmful carbohydrates. While traveling, I did have some dishes that were rather unhealthy. However, I also managed to stay active by working out three times a week and taking long walks under the sun on my off-days. All of these changes in behavior made me feel healthier, more vital, and far more energized during the month of Ramadan. – Hassan Mustafa (translated by Asaf Zilberfarb)

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