NUTRITIONAL TIPS FOR RAMADAN
Fasting during Ramadan can improve one’s health, but only if done in the proper manner. But if done incorrectly, it can cause more harm than good. This Ramadan, we give you a wide range of nutrition tips to follow. Learn how you can eat healthy at Iftar and Suhour and ensure adequate nutrition and continued good health. Follow our tips to make a few lifestyle changes to get the best out of this Ramadan. Let this season be a time of revival in spirit, soul and body. A healthy Iftar goes hand in hand with the traditions: starting with 2 dates, then a glass of water or Dehi Lassi, and then start the meal with a warm bowl of soup, a salad. Of course, moderation is key to health!!!
Starting your Iftar meal with a warm soup comforts the stomach after a long day of fasting replenishes your body with fluids and helps prepare the digestive system for this blessed meal. A balanced main dish at Iftar should contain a source of carbohydrates like rice, pasta, potatoes as well as some form of protein like beef, chicken or fish, in addition to cooked vegetables.
Don’t forget to drink plenty of water during the holy month of Ramadan. At least 8 glasses distributed in small quantities so not to feel bloated. To prevent getting thirsty during Ramadan, drink plenty of water, avoid foods that are too spicy or salty.
Some people tend to be more sedentary during the month of Ramadan. To burn extra calories, make sure to be active by at least going for a walk every day, 2 hours after having Iftar which allows you time to digest your meal.
Some people tend to eat more during Ramadan and this can lead to gaining weight. Eating a healthy Iftar, eating starters and sweets in moderation, choosing more fruits and vegetables, avoiding sweetened beverages, and being active every day will help you maintain your weight.
Suhour is a vital meal in Ramadan. It gives you strength and vitality for the day and can make fasting easier and tolerable. Make sure that this meal is rich in slowly absorbed Carbohydrates such as whole grain bread, rice and whole grain cereals that can help maintain your blood sugar levels. For plenty of vitamins and minerals vital to good health, make sure to eat plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables during Ramadan, and to include a variety of vegetable in your soups! People who suffer from a headache or dizziness due to low blood sugar levels during the fasting period should break the fast at Iftar time by starting with 2-3 dates which will help replenish blood sugar levels. Eating your soup and salad slowly at Iftar will help you feel full and prevent you from overeating later from the main dish and sweets.
Delightful sweets in Ramadan are hard to resist. To avoid consuming too many calories, indulge and enjoy with your family the tasty and creative delights while making sure you always practice portion control and moderation!!! Choose dates, dried fruits and nuts as part of your diet during Ramadan. These provide healthy nutrients and are packed with energy, thus helping you keep your vitality during this month. To make your dishes lighter during Ramadan, adopt healthy cooking methods such as grilling, boiling, simmering and roasting and add taste to the food with a wealth of vegetables, herbs and seasonings. Eating sweets immediately after Iftar will increase the size of your stomach and cause a delay in digestion. It will also cause a fluctuation in the blood glucose level, which will lead to you craving for more sweets. That’s why, it is recommended to have sweets in moderation 2-3 hours after Iftar. Planning your meals and Ramadan recipes ahead will help you be organized during this month, maximize your energy and strength and gives you ample time to choose a variety of foods and healthy recipes to delight and nourish the family. For balanced nutrition, try not to rely solely on Iftar to give you all your nutritional requirements. You can have other light meals before bedtimes such as low fat yoghurt and a whole-wheat cheese sandwich, or some dried fruits and nuts. Not to forget your Suhour that can include a glass of low fat milk, whole wheat bread and some legumes. Avoid salty foods, such as canned or processed foods, salted nuts, and pickles, because these will increase your thirst during the fasting period.