Healthy foods to consume after fasting in Ramadan amid COVID-19
Muslims around the world are observing daytime fasting for 30 days during the holy month of Ramadan, abstaining from meals and drinks, while spending large portions of their time in prayers.
Through this COVID-19 pandemic, Muslims need to follow a healthy diet that will enhance the immune system and provide energy and nourishment throughout the day and avert health problems.
Fasting allows the body to focus its energy on one at a time, and thus stopping digestion for a specific period allows the immune system to be more active. This will allow the body to repair cells and fight off germs better.
Between dawn and dusk when Muslims abstain from eating and drinking, is the time when the immune system will be most active but to ensure this, the necessity of getting up to eat a light healthy meal before dawn is important, especially fruits or vegetables.
Studies have shown that fasting can restore the immune system and help fight off infection.
When it comes to building a healthy diet during Ramadan, the key is to go for lighter but filling foods that will help your body replenish all the nutrients you may lose throughout the day.
Try to set your table to include all the essential food groups – grains, vegetables and fruits, legumes, nuts and dairy. What and how you eat your meals will play an important role in helping you be healthy and immune for the duration of Ramadan.
A great way to break the fast is to have dates. The fruit is extremely effective in raising blood sugar quickly because they are easily and quickly absorbed. In Ramadan, we are slowly being dehydrated over the day. So, once we break our fast and during the non-fasting period, we need to have foods that put water into our body, not deplete it further.
If you are like most people, you may be used to eating three meals each day. But there is little evidence that this is good for you. To the contrary, doing so may contribute to obesity and diabetes.
On the other hand, the physical, mental and spiritual benefits of intermittent fasting have been proven.
Fasting changes the function of cells, genes and hormones. When you don’t eat for a while, several things happen in your body. For example, your body initiates important cellular repair processes and changes hormone levels to make stored body fat more accessible.
Fasting can reduce oxidative stress and inflammation in the body. Oxidative stress is one of the steps towards aging and many chronic diseases.