Fasting Tips for a Healthy Ramadan by Medhatter.sg
1. Eat moderately at Iftar – when breaking the fast, avoid sudden large intakes of sugar and fatty foods, as these can disturb metabolism and cause dizziness, headaches, fatigue or indigestion. Instead, break the fast with dates, yoghurt and water, and then waiting 10 minutes before consuming a sensible portion of food, which should be rich in minerals and vitamins.
2. Make sure to eat Suhour – choose complex carbohydrates such as whole-grain bread, barley and lentils to provide you with energy for the day of fasting ahead.
3. Get sufficient sleep - the Holy Month is a time of increased prayer and cherished gatherings of family and friends, which may alter routine bedtimes and affect quality of sleep. Fasters should aim to get eight hours of sleep in every 24 hour period, even if this is split into several separate periods of rest.
4. Adapt your exercise regime – exercise plans should be moderated to allow for the change in eating patterns, and fasters should concentrate on lighter exercises, such as brisk walking. Wait 2-3 hours after Iftar before starting a work-out regime.
5. Managing medication and chronic illness – fasters with chronic health conditions should consult their doctors ahead of Ramadan for advice on how fasting may affect their health. As a general rule, medication usually taken at breakfast can be taken at Iftar, whilst medications usually taken at dinner can be taken at Subuh. Diabetics should consult a physician for advice on how they can continue to take Insulin and monitor blood sugar carefully around mealtimes.
6. Plan workload carefully – although in many countries work hours are reduced during Ramadan, it is advisable to plan workloads to minimise fatigue. Work that requires heavy concentration should be carried out in the early morning hours. Where possible, working fasters should work at intervals throughout the day to avoid unnecessary strain, rather than attempting one long work period.
7. Be extra cautious on the road – low blood sugar from fasting can seriously affect fasters’ capabilities and concentration behind the wheel. In many Muslim countries, traffic will be heavy in the hour before sunset, as people return home to break their fast. Traffic accidents tend to peak at this time, so avoid road travel later in the day whenever possible and exercise extra caution if travel is required.