Your Health in Ramadan
Salaamu alaikum. Below is an old message I share before Ramadan. Hope you find something useful in it.
I should have had a section on salty foods. Don’t eat too much salty food or you will be so thirsty the next day!
I want to mention - before it’s too late - to watch what you are eating and drinking now. Don’t wait until Ramadan starts or even the day before. If you are a new(er) Muslim, you may not realize yet that a lot of what we do can help us feel better. I can share some of my own experiences with you, but only you know what you need to do. Some of my advice is because I have had a low blood sugar problem that is developing into a reactive glycemia - a precursor to diabetes. I do not have diabetes and the advice I got about it being a threat may or may not be true. But your blood sugar is critical - all the time - especially when fasting. So, if this helps me, you will be even better off doing some of it if you do NOT have a blood sugar problem. (insha Allah)
One of the most beautiful aspects to Ramadan is that it is a barometer for our health. It’s a barometer for all aspects of our being: our spiritual state, emotional state, our mental and physical health. So, even if what I suggest doesn’t seem relevant to you, something else will be and I invite you to think about it. It takes being quiet, in touch, and being honest with yourself.
I don’t drink coffee a day or two before Ramadan starts and not during the month. If I do, I will not feel good the next day. So these last few days, I’ve been tapering off the coffee and, for the last couple of days, I’ve had NO coffee at all. It’s better to do
this soon enough that you can take something for a headache if you need to and eat energy foods to help offset the sluggishness. For me, it’s eating regularly but snacking frequently on carrots, yogurt, apples, etc.
If you do it before the fasting starts, your body is completely different. And if you wait for all this,
fasting is unnecessarily miserable. Do it now while you can eat your energy foods.
I don’t really approve
of multivitamins (they are not balanced), but I periodically take one that is heavy on minerals. I also take some herbal things. For the last few days, I’ve been taking the vitamins and (for me) a calcium and magnesium supplement. Again, since we are “bad” about
our diets, it’s a way to at least get more vitamins and minerals than usual.
I have more questions than advice on this one. Of course, consult your physician. A sister just told me that Guava (?) leaf tea at night helps a person to fast. IF YOU HAVE BEEN DIAGNOSED with Diabetes, PLEASE be sure of what you try. I have no doubt that
Allah “has made a cure for everything, except death” but we may try the wrong thing because we didn’t know something. I think that sister is included in this message. Perhaps she can elaborate and correct me if I have the wrong name of the tea.
I don’t eat sugar during Ramadan. In fact, I finished my last ice cream a couple of days ago. I mean junk food (white) sugar - usually many types in one product. OF COURSE, I DO NOT eliminate fruit. That’s a different sugar - good sugar. DATES and BANANAS are the best
little foods you can eat. Don’t eat a date at the end of suhoor or it will make you thirsty
(actually I don’t know if that’s only for us blood sugar worriers or everyone - but for me, it’s out).
Drink lots and lots of water BOTH at night time and at suhoor. I’ve forgotten the science of it - maybe someone else will remember. When we drink it at night, it balances (?something?) the next day. And drinking it the morning just seems right to me because I have to drink a lot of water.
Think about your quality of
sleep - not how long you sleep; the quality of it. I’ve only recently begun to really work at this so I’m no expert. I am sure that it is a problem. It may be something for you to think about.
Don’t laugh - I am trying not to be on “overload”. Seriously, I’ve read about how multitasking makes our brains begin to shut down. This IS a health issue. We lose our real focus and concentration. I’m new at this one, too, but at least let’s try to focus on the moment and really “be” where we are - if you know what I mean. We are in the middle of a task or a conversation and our mind may be jumping around to other things, etc. Our Sunnah helps us with this - this is a superficial
explanation but dhikr, focus on the salaat, even focusing on a person because of
good manners help our brain and body to be calm and focused (again, don’t laugh - I’m terrible at this).
Well, that’s a few things that come to mind. Make dua’ for me and for all Muslims that this
Ramadan will be pure in intention, a blessing in many ways: insight, love for each other, helping those we can - just all ways. Insha Allah.
Jazakum Allah kayrun - and
and early Ramadan Kareem!