Health Article
Jan 19, 2021

Tips for Staying Healthy During Fasting

The month of Ramadan has arrived, where all Muslims are required to fast, endure hunger and thirst for approximately 12-14 hours every day, for a whole month.  Therefore it is important to pay attention to diet and sleep patterns so that you can fast properly.  Even so, fasting has many health benefits, of course if it is done in a good way.

Fasting during the day does not mean that the body becomes lethargic.  Diet changes during the fasting month must be treated properly so that the body remains healthy and fit while doing the activities during the day.

Here are some healthy tips during fasting:

  1. Before starting fasting, it’s good to consult your health with your doctor. Especially for those of you who have health problems, ask about the diet, the right time to take medication or multivitamins and also the types of exercise that can be done during fasting.
  2. The role of sahur (eating at dawn) during fasting is very important. The menu you eat can affect your body’s work during the whole day.  Take the foods that contain complex carbohydrates such as sweet potatoes, corn, cassava, oatmeal, whole wheat bread and brown rice as they help to keep you full for more than 6 hours.  Protein, fruit, vegetables and adequate water also help maintain stamina during fasting.
  3. Avoid consuming foods that are oily, too sweet and contain lots of sugar, because it will make the body weak during the day. Avoid caffeinated drinks such as coffee and tea, because they make the body lose fluids faster.
  4. Avoid hot and scorching air, try to move in a cold room or shady place. Limit physical activity so you don’t get tired quickly and take the time to do light exercise such as an afternoon walk to help improve blood circulation.
  5. Eat just enough on Iftar. Immediately eating a lot of food will only make the stomach feel tight.  Health experts recommend eating gradually, starting from a few sips of water, a little sweet food, and an interval of at least half an hour or an hour before eating food, eat according to your usual portion, no need to overdo it.  Consume just adequate amount of carbohydrates, protein, vegetables and fruits.
  6. Many people mistake the meaning of “breaking with a sweet”. Eating sweet foods or drinks is best done at breaking the fast, so that you can immediately restore energy after a day of fasting.  But be careful with the portion of sweet food or drink that is consumed too much, especially if the sweet taste comes from sugar.
  7. At dinner, make sure not to eat too much to prevent obesity. Also, avoid drinking coffee and soda because they can make it difficult to sleep and store a lot of fat.  Replace those drinks with mineral water and fruit juice.
  8. Do light exercise at night, for example by walking for 15 minutes to 20 minutes after dinner.
  9. Apart from paying attention to food intake, regulating sleep patterns is also important. Drowsiness during the fasting month is not caused by not eating and drinking all day, but because you don’t have enough sleep.  If you have to get up early to prepare a meal, then you shouldn’t stay up late at night for unnecessary purposes.