Is fasting during Ramadan good for you? Are there any risks? Everything you need to know

Ramadan, the interval of fasting celebrated by thousands and thousands world wide, is predicted to start out subsequent week.

As Muslims put together for one of the important occasions within the Islamic calendar, we check out the well being impacts of Ramadan.

What’s Ramadan?

Ramadan is the ninth month of the Islamic calendar. 

It’s marked by a 29 to 30 day interval of fasting, which commemorates the Islamic prophet Muhammad being visited by the angel Jibreel/Gabriel and revealing the foundations of the Qur’an.

Ramadan, a interval of fasting celebrated by Muslims worldwide, may carry various well being advantages in addition to some potential well being dangers

During Ramadan most Muslims only eat twice a day, at a predawn meal called suhoor and again in an after sundown meal called iftar

Throughout Ramadan most Muslims solely eat twice a day, at a predawn meal referred to as suhoor and once more in an after sunset meal referred to as iftar

It’s celebrated internationally with grownup Muslims required, with some exceptions, to not eat any eat meals or drink from dawn to sundown.

As an alternative, they eat and drink earlier than daybreak in a meal referred to as suhoor and once more in an after sunset meal referred to as iftar. 

Smoking can be banned throughout daytime in Ramadan.

The non secular concept behind the fasting is that it permits Muslims to empathise with these much less lucky in addition to to review the Qur’an and enhance their relationship with Allah. 

One other facet of Ramadan is that non secular rewards are multiplied throughout this month.

Which means that actions like swearing, mendacity, combating and arguing, and intercourse are additionally discouraged throughout Ramadan, while charity in the direction of others is inspired. 

This 12 months, Ramadan is predicted to be between 22 March and 21 April within the UK. 

Are some Muslims exempt from fasting?

Sure, usually those that may undergo damaging well being penalties from fasting are exempt. 

These teams embody the aged, frail, those that are ailing or being handled for a medical situation, pregnant and menstruating girls in addition to those that are breastfeeding.   

Youngsters who haven’t reached puberty, in addition to all Muslims who’re travelling removed from house, are usually exempt from the quick as nicely. 

Individuals who miss out on fasting as a consequence of a short lived purpose, similar to menstruation or brief sickness, are inspired to make up the fasting at a unique time of the 12 months.

Pregnant women are among those groups who are exempt from fasting during Ramadan

Pregnant girls are amongst these teams who’re exempt from fasting throughout Ramadan 

For these unable to make up the quick, a charitable donation to assist feed the poor is inspired as a substitute. 

In the course of the Covid pandemic, some Muslim NHS employees have been made exempt from not consuming throughout Ramadan as a result of threat to themselves and to sufferers brought on by potential dehydration whereas carrying intensive PPE. 

What are among the well being advantages of fasting?

Fasting has the plain good thing about lowering, in concept, the variety of energy consumed, which may assist you to shed pounds.

Nevertheless, whether or not an individual loses weight or not depends upon what they eat throughout the pre-dawn and post-sundown meals.

If an individual opts for heavy decadent calorific feasts to interrupt their quick every single day, they will not lose any weight regardless of not consuming or consuming throughout the day.

Because of this Muslims are advisable to eat a traditional balanced meal, that includes quite a lot of main meals teams for suhoor and iftar. 

For some overweight or chubby individuals, change to their common weight loss program can result in weight reduction throughout Ramadan.

Nevertheless, except they make modifications to their consuming habits for the remainder of the 12 months the load will return.

Intermittent fasting, which has a superficial resemblance to Ramadan fasting in that proponents skip meals for hours a day, has been linked to anti-aging advantages by some research, although that is disputed. 

Some small research have discovered Ramadan fasting lowers the degrees of ldl cholesterol and boosts the immune system, however others discovered no observable impact.

Decreasing the degrees of smoking, which is in Ramadan fasting, might be helpful as it’d encourage individuals to give up absolutely.

Smoking reduction could encourage people to quit cigarettes full time

Smoking discount may encourage individuals to give up cigarettes full time 

Are there any well being dangers from Ramadan fasting? 

Muslims vulnerable to potential well being issues from fasting, just like the injured and pregnant girls, are exempt there aren’t many broad well being dangers from the practise. 

Whereas oral medicine could be thought-about breaking the quick, people who find themselves severely ailing are exempt from fasting.

Moreover, many medicine regimes could be modified in order that capsules are taken as a part of suhoor and iftar.

Nevertheless, anybody with considerations ought to seek the advice of with their GP or physician earlier than deciding to not take their medicine.

Some medical professionals advise their sufferers to postpone fasting till the winter when the daytime, and due to this fact the fasting interval, is shorter to scale back the influence on their well being in the event that they nonetheless want to quick.

One of many well being situations to clearly pay attention to is diabetes and the influence fasting can have on blood sugar ranges.

Muslims with diabetes are inspired to talk to their diabetes administration crew earlier than Ramadan to debate if fasting is advisable. 

Oral medications are generally considered to breaking the fast during Ramadan which can cause some people to have to change their medication timings

Oral medicines are usually thought-about to breaking the quick throughout Ramadan which may trigger some individuals to have to vary their medicine timings 

Most imams usually help Muslims with well being situations being exempt from fasting because the Qur’an itself states individuals mustn’t act in a approach that harms their physique.  

Extra usually, fasting could cause just a few minor well being issues. 

Gentle dehydration can happen from not consuming which may trigger complications, tiredness and problem concentrating.

The identical is true for individuals who usually eat caffeinated drinks similar to tea and occasional throughout the day, although this often eases over Ramadan as their physique will get use to the withdrawal. 

Lastly the modifications to consuming habits and lack of fluids throughout the day could cause constipation in some individuals. 

Muslims are advisable loads of excessive fibre meals, similar to wholegrains, excessive fibre cereals, bran, fruit and greens, beans, lentils, dried fruit and nuts alongside loads of fluid throughout their predawn and publish sunset meals.

Moreover, a light-weight bodily exercise, like a stroll after iftar, is advisable to scale back the danger of constipation.