In Ramadan, when the sun sets down, families and friends gather around a table of grand feasts. While this experience can be enjoyable to most people, it can be discouraging for people trying to maintain good eating habits during the holy month. A balanced iftar is very important as it’s the meal that reloads energy and helps maintain your fast the day after.
Making sure consuming the right foods with enough amount nutrients that your body needs is very ideal. Ramadan is a chance to foster good eating habits that should continue with you even after Ramadan ends. Here are 5 top tips to help you find the best way to break you fast and make it healthy during the rest of the month.
The human body is about 60% water. It is essential for bodily functions, including metabolizing and transporting nutrients throughout the body and removing waste. The amount of water in our bodies fluctuates – most of it is lost through urine and sweat and regained from food and drinks. It is normal to become dehydrated while fasting. It can result in weight loss that is quickly regained when normal eating and drinking habits resume.
Hunger tempts us to overeat or eat fast.
- Try a handful of roasted nuts and dried fruits to break your fast with.
- Choose whole grains instead of white bread. Avoid pasta and sugary cereals. The energy of these simple carbohydrates is broken down and used too quickly.
- If you cannot get fresh or frozen vegetables, pick cans with “low sodium” labels.
- Eat grilled, baked, or steamed food instead of fried.
- Enjoy traditional iftar desserts in small portions. Fruits are healthier alternatives – natural sugars will satisfy your sweet tooth.
- A Balanced diet is ideal for good health. Even during Ramadan, make sure your food intake is simple and does not deviate too much from your normal diet.
During hot days, avoid aggressive and high-intensity exercise. Hot days increase body fluid loss which could lead to dehydration. Choose a convenient time to work out during Ramadan, either just before Iftar or two to three hours after Iftar.
Avoid foods high in fat, salt & sugar
As much as possible, stay away from heavy meals that are high in fat, salt, and sugar. Prepare healthier meals by stewing, baking, roasting, steaming or grilling, and avoid frying. Add herbs and spices to reduce the need for adding salt to your meals. Most Importantly, replace sweets and sweetened drinks with naturally occurring sugar in fruits, dried fruits, and fruit salads.
Eat Your Greens
Vegetables are rich in vitamins, minerals, and fiber. Also, They are low in calories. The more colorful your salad, the healthier it gets. It aids in curbing the appetite and prevents you from overeating. Aim for 2 servings of vegetables per meal. One serving equals a 1/2 cup of raw or cooked vegetables or vegetable juice or 1 cup of leafy raw vegetables.