Ramadan is on the doorstep, its quite exciting, we’ve been making decorations and stocking up on dates!
Ramadan is the month in the Islamic calendar when we fast between dawn and sunset, no food , water, sex, arguing or smoking. Needless to say its great for strengthening our will power !
1 Isn’t going without food and water for so long bad for you?
In a word, No.
There have been numerous studies regarding the benefits of fasting, recently the 2/5 diet where one fasts two days a week has brought media attention to the health benefits of fasting. Fasting gives a much needed rest to our digestive system during which time the body repairs and detoxes, there are many jokes about the breath of a fasting person as the body sends toxins to the lungs to be expelled. Obviously if a person is old,ill, pregnant, breastfeeding or a child under the age of puberty then fasting would probably be harmful. These people are exempt from fasting Ramadan.
Fasting is great mental training, we often drift through the day, fasting gives your brain focus, helps us over come bad habits and reduce addiction to caffeine and cigarettes.
2 Don’t you feel hungry?
Yes we do feel hungry but to be honest after a few days of fasting the body adapts pretty quickly and the hunger goes away during the fasting hours, the thirst is more difficult to ignore. We hydrate massivly i the night hours, sipping water constantly and trying to get a lot of foods that release water in the gut into our diet. The good thing about being truly thirsty and hungry is how much it makes us grateful for our blessings, how long has it been since you’ve been without food and drink for more than 10 hours during the day? If you work as a nurse, midwife or doctor you’ll know the feeling well but most of us rarely go more than 5 hours without something.
3 What about sex?
Sex and sexual contact during the hours of the fast is forbidden and would nullify the fast. However in the night time its allowed between married couples of course 😛
The days are so long here in the summer that its likely most couples don’t have much time for it in Ramadan.
4 What do you do all night in Ramadan?
Well Ramadan is really all about the nights, each night is precious to us and we use the time wisely,(or we should do) we eat and drink, feed the poor and needy. We go to the mosque for a long prayer every night or as often as we can, we read Quran a lot and reflect on it, we also have massive charity collections with telethons going on every night to raise money for the needy throughout the world. In the Uk the night s are very short so we don’t sleep at all, many of us fit a workout or brisk walk into the night hours to get our hearts pumping.
5 Do you lose weight?
yes and no! Some of us drop the pounds with ease, some give into temptation when we break the fast and actually find the pounds creep on during this time, our metabolism slows incredibly and with little physical activity in
the day time its easy to get lazy. Eating a well balanced diet in Ramadan is essential to prevent the sluggish feeling and sleepiness.