Home Healthy Tips How to plan for successful fasting during Ramadan

How to plan for successful fasting during Ramadan

How to plan for successful fasting during Ramadan

Murtadha Al-Sudani/Anadolu Company/Getty Pictures

Muslims have iftar, the fast-breaking night meal, through the Islamic holy month of Ramadan at Abdul-Qadir Gilani Advanced on March 30, 2023 in Baghdad, Iraq.


Ramadan is the ninth month of the Islamic calendar, throughout which observant Muslims observe a strict quick from daybreak till sundown. Sustaining a balanced weight-reduction plan throughout this holy month is critical so as to hold the physique energized for prayer and different practices all through the day.

Dietician Rahaf Al Bochi, recipe developer for the CNN e-newsletter Eat, However Higher: Mediterranean Fashion, shares her ideas on methods to eat healthily and keep hydrated whereas fasting.

This dialog was edited and condensed for readability.

CNN: First, when are you able to eat throughout Ramadan?

Rahaf Al Bochi: The primary meal you eat is suhoor, the predawn meal. It’s like breakfast, however you get to have it earlier. You need to just be sure you’re not skipping that. At sundown, you’ve got iftar, which is the breaking of your quick.

CNN: What’s one of the best ways to interrupt your quick?

Al Bochi: In our prophetic custom, the advice is to interrupt the quick with dates and water. Dates are a fantastic supply of fast energizing sugar, which is what you need while you’re fasting through the day. In addition they have some fiber, and while you pair them with a protein supply like some nuts, it may possibly forestall a pointy spike in blood sugar. Some choices are nut butter, almonds or walnuts. Relying on their dimension, you additionally don’t need to eat 10 dates, only one or two.

When breaking quick, you’ll need to tempo your self and never soar into consuming your important meal. Take a couple of minutes to do your prayer after which come again to eat. Take heed to your starvation and fullness cues and examine in with your self that you simply’re consuming slowly, chewing the meals and having fun with it.

Devi Rahman/AFP/Getty Pictures

A Muslim individual prepares meals for breaking quick throughout Ramadan at a mosque in Yogyakarta on the island of Java in Indonesia, on March 28, 2023.

CNN: What ought to a meal embrace?

Al Bochi: While you’re constructing your meal, ensure you have complicated carbohydrates, fiber-rich carbohydrates, protein and wholesome fats. A terrific visible to make use of is the wholesome plate mannequin. It will possibly show you how to stability your macronutrients, meet your power wants and portion-size meals teams.

Envision your plate and divide it in half. One-half of your plate ought to be for non-starchy greens or a salad. Then 1 / 4 of your plate ought to be for complicated carbohydrates which are fiber-rich, resembling quinoa or potatoes. Fruits may also go on there. The final quarter of your plate is for protein in order that’s your rooster, beef and different meats.

CNN: Are you able to give me some examples of a typical meal for suhoor and iftar?

Al Bochi: On the subject of the predawn meal, you’re getting sufficient protein to maintain you. The rationale we deal with protein and wholesome fat is that they’re slower to digest in your physique. These are the meals that will provide you with power all through the day. Examples are eggs, avocados and toast, in a single day oats, Greek yogurt bowls, protein waffles and burritos filled with beans and eggs.

Individuals prefer to eat rice, rooster, salad and soup for dinner. For the iftar meal, ensure you are incorporating these varieties of meals with the wholesome plate mannequin.

Ali Jadallah/Anadolu Company/Getty Pictures

Palestinians collect for iftar at tables arrange within the streets of Khan Younis in Gaza, on April 4, 2023.

CNN: Are there meals you suggest individuals keep away from throughout Ramadan?

Al Bochi: Actually, I don’t like to inform individuals you shouldn’t completely keep away from meals, however there are some you will be aware of, like sweetened drinks and fried meals. Lots of cultural meals are usually fried, so get pleasure from them sparsely. Ensure your different meals are balanced and extra nutritionally dense.

CNN: Do you’ve got any suggestions for staying hydrated when fasting?

Rahaf Al Bochi: It’s actually essential to ensure you’re adequately hydrating through the non-fasting hours. That may imply taking a water bottle with you in the event you go outdoors for nightly prayers. Teas, soups, and fruits with excessive water content material like watermelon all rely towards your fluid consumption.

One other nice tip is so as to add electrolytes to water. Electrolytes assist your physique take in the water you’re consuming and add further potassium, sodium and vitamin C. Combine a no-added-sugar electrolyte powder into your water or make your individual with coconut water, a pinch of salt and a splash of orange juice.

CNN: Espresso will be very dehydrating. Ought to individuals in the reduction of on their caffeine consumption throughout Ramadan?

Rahaf Al Bochi: Actually, it’s a private choice. For those who’re a espresso drinker after which abruptly cease throughout Ramadan, you may expertise some complications. I like to recommend my shoppers taper down their caffeine consumption, although it depends upon how a lot they’re presently consuming. Some individuals love their caffeine and can drink their espresso on the predawn meal, suhoor.

To have an energized Ramadan, optimize your vitamin. Stability your meals utilizing the wholesome plate mannequin, drink sufficient water and add electrolytes as wanted. Lastly, bear in mind to get pleasure from your cultural meals. We need to nonetheless benefit from the meals we’re consuming.

Jocelyn Solis-Moreira is a contract well being and science journalist primarily based in New York.


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