Ramadan Health Tips
Prepared by
Md. Al Imran
Officer, Card Dept.
ICT Wing.
Health is the key to happiness, and what we consume directly affects our health. Islam
encourages Muslims to ensure that t...
prevents the breakdown of muscle for protein. The use of fat for energy aids weight
loss, preserving the muscles, and in t...
In their natural form (as in whole grain), cereals are a rich source of vitamins, minerals,
carbohydrates, fats, oils, and...
 Processed foods such as cake, candy cookies and chips
 White potatoes
 Sweetened soft drinks
 Sugar
Foods to avoid / ...
 monounsaturated fats
 polyunsaturated fats
 saturated fats
 trans fats
Monounsaturated fats and polyunsaturated fats ...
Eat slow digesting foods which include: Meat, poultry, seafood, eggs, dairy products,
legumes, nuts and whole grains are a...
It is very important to watch your sodium intake at this time as high sodium can cause
greater dehydration plus increase t...
Iftar:
 Three Dates and a Nutrition Shake (Protein Rush from VPX Sports, Lean Body by
Labrada, or Eat-Smart MRP from iSat...
course, most people I know will not want to get up at around 3:30am and do cardio! If you
CAN pull this off then the best ...
3. Fish – Eating fish regularly can have positive effects on health. The fish oils EPA and
DHA have been shown to improve ...
References:
[1]pdf: Ramadan Health Guide
[2] http://www.suhaibwebb.com/personaldvlpt/worship/fasting-ramadan/the-ramadan-n...
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Transcript of "Ramadan health tips"

  1. 1. Ramadan Health Tips Prepared by Md. Al Imran Officer, Card Dept. ICT Wing.
  2. 2. Health is the key to happiness, and what we consume directly affects our health. Islam encourages Muslims to ensure that they are mindful of their health. The blessed Prophet said: “Take advantage of the good health before illnesses afflict you”. He also encouraged Muslims to try their best to take up a healthy living lifestyle that includes a balanced diet, regular mental and physical exercise and a balance between material and spiritual needs. Another thing that there is no basic difference regarding healthy diet plan between Ramadan and other months. They are almost same. Only difference is our time schedule which is changed a little in this blessed month. Some statistics: The Health Survey for England 2004 (Department of Health, 2005) has shown poor health and lifestyle choices of the Asian community in general and Muslim community in particular. Compared with the 24% of men in the general population who smoked cigarettes, higher levels of cigarette smoking were reported by Bangladeshi men (40%). South Asian men and women had the highest rates of diabetes. Pakistanis and Bangladeshis were up to five times more likely than the general population to have diabetes, and Indian men and women were up to three times as likely. Some 33% of Pakistani men and women eat the recommended five or more portions of fruit and vegetables a day, compared with 28% of Bangladeshi men and women. What happens in body during Ramadan The changes that occur in the body in response to fasting depend on the length of the continuous fast. Technically the body enters into a fasting state eight hours or so after the last meal, when the gut finishes absorption of nutrients from the food. In the normal state, body glucose, which is stored in the liver and muscles, is the body’s main source of energy. During a fast, this store of glucose is used up first to provide energy. Later in the fast, once the stores of glucose run out, fat becomes the next store source of energy for the body. Small quantities of glucose are also ‘manufactured’ through other mechanisms in the liver[1]. while you are fasting, you become more dehydrated at rest – but actually less than if you had exercised aerobically for over an hour (so exercise causes greater dehydration for that time period versus fasting) [ 2]. Difference between fasting and starvation: Only with a prolonged fast of many days to weeks does the body eventually turn to protein for energy. This is the technical description of what is commonly known as ‘starvation’, and it is clearly unhealthy [1]. As the Ramadan fast only extends from dawn till dusk, there is ample opportunity to replenish energy stores at pre-dawn and dusk meals. This provides a progressive, gentle transition from using glucose to fat as the main source of energy, and
  3. 3. prevents the breakdown of muscle for protein. The use of fat for energy aids weight loss, preserving the muscles, and in the long run reduces your cholesterol levels. In addition, weight loss results in better control of diabetes and reduces blood pressure. A detoxification process also seems to occur, as any toxins stored in the body’s fat are dissolved and removed from the body. After a few days of the fast, higher levels of certain hormones appear in the blood (endorphins), resulting in a better level of alertness and an overall feeling of general mental well-being. The kidney is very efficient at maintaining the body’s water and salts, such as sodium and potassium. However, these can be lost through sweating. To prevent muscle breakdown, meals must contain adequate levels of ‘energy food’, such as carbohydrates and some fat[1]. Major food groups Fruit and vegetables Bread, other cereals and potatoes Foods containing fat Foods containing sugar Meat, fish and alternatives Milk and and dairy foods
  4. 4. In their natural form (as in whole grain), cereals are a rich source of vitamins, minerals, carbohydrates, fats, oils, and protein[3] Complex carbohydrates are foods that will help release energy slowly during the long hours of fasting. Complex carbohydrates are found in grains and seeds, like barley(যব), wheat (গম), oats(জই), millets (ভু ট্টা), semolina (঴ুজজ), beans (঴ীম), lentils (ম঴ুর), wholemeal flour (আটা), basmati rice, etc. Fibre-rich foods are also digested slowly and include bran (ভু জ঳), cereals (খাদ্য ল঴য), whole wheat, grains and seeds, potatoes with the skin, vegetables such as green beans and almost all fruit, including apricots, prunes (আ঱ু ববাখারা), figs (ডু মুর), etc. Carbohydrates were once grouped into two main categories — simple and complex. Simple carbohydrates included sugars such as fruit sugar (fructose), corn or grape sugar (dextrose or glucose) and table sugar (sucrose). Complex carbohydrates included everything made of three or more linked sugars. Complex carbohydrates were thought to be the healthiest to eat. Now there are questions about that assumption [9]. Complex Carbs Are Good Complex carbs are the ones that give your body the best fuel. They are usually found in foods high in fiber, which break down more slowly, giving you a steady blood sugar level through the day and making you feel less hungry and irritable when mid-afternoon rolls around [10]. It's a great idea to get more of these carbs into your daily diet:  Fresh fruit, ideally those with a low glycemic Index like apricots, raspberries, strawberries and blackberries  Non-starchy vegetables  Whole grains and foods made from whole grains, such as certain types of bread and cereal  Nuts  Legumes  Dairy products that are not sweetened with sugar, such as yogurt, sour cream, cheese and milk Simple Carbs Should Be Avoided Your body quickly breaks down simple carbs, giving your blood sugar a spike and sending you running back to the kitchen or snack machine within hours of your last fix. Unless you're an athlete or need a sudden rush of energy for some reason, it's usually best to avoid these carbs in your daily diet:  Refined grains like white bread, white rice and enriched pasta
  5. 5.  Processed foods such as cake, candy cookies and chips  White potatoes  Sweetened soft drinks  Sugar Foods to avoid / alternative foods Deep-fried foods, eg pakoras, samosas, fried dumplings or with potato in yogurt with different Indian spices), samosas baked instead of fried, and boiled dumplings High-sugar/high-fat foods, eg Indian sweets such as Ghulab Jamun, Rasgulla, Balushahi, Baklawa Milk-based sweets and puddings, eg Rasmalai, Barfee High-fat cooked foods, eg parathas, oily curries, greasy pastries Alternate with chapattis made without oil, and baked or grilled meat and chicken. Try to make pastry at home and use a single layer Cooking methods to avoid Alternative cooking methods Deep frying Shallow frying – usually there is very little difference in taste Frying Grilling or baking is healthier and helps retain the taste and original flavour of the food, especially chicken and fish Curries with excessive oil Start with measuring the oil used in curry and try to bring the oil content down gradually, eg reducing five tablespoons to four. This is a good way of reducing oil without noticing much difference in the taste. A useful tip is to use more onions and tomatoes in the bulk of the curry Foods for Suhoor (Pre-dawn meal) Suhoor, the pre-dawn meal, should be a wholesome, moderate meal that is filling and provides enough energy for many hours. It is therefore particularly important to include slowly-digesting foods (it includes bran (ভু জ঳), wholewheat grains and seeds, vegetables such as green beans, peas (ডা঱) and spinach (঱তা-পাতা লাক), and dried fruit, especially dried apricots and almonds-কাজুবাদ্াম[6]) in the suhoor[1]. For suhoor, it is imperative to drink plenty of water, eat a good blend of protein, carbohydrates, and essential fat. That’s right, “good fats” have many fat-burning and muscle-building properties, and their importance is even greater during Ramadan [2]. Fats are an important part of a healthy diet: They provide essential fatty acids, keep our skin soft, deliver fat-soluble vitamins, and are a great source of energizing fuel [4]. There are four major types of fats:[5]
  6. 6.  monounsaturated fats  polyunsaturated fats  saturated fats  trans fats Monounsaturated fats and polyunsaturated fats are known as the “good fats” because they are good for your heart, your cholesterol, and your overall health. GOOD FATS Monounsaturated fat Polyunsaturated fat  Olive oil  Canola oil  Sunflower oil  Peanut oil  Sesame oil(জত঱)  Avocados  Olives  Nuts (almonds, peanuts, macadamia nuts, hazelnuts, pecans, cashews)  Peanut butter  Soybean oil  Corn oil  Safflower oil  Walnuts (আখররাট)  Sunflower, sesame, and pumpkin seeds Flaxseed  Fatty fish (salmon, tuna, mackerel, herring, trout, sardines)  Soymilk  Tofu Saturated fats and trans fats are known as the “bad fats” because they increase your risk of disease and elevate cholesterol. Appearance-wise, saturated fats and trans fats tend to be solid at room temperature (think of butter or traditional stick margarine), while monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats tend to be liquid (think of olive or corn oil). BAD FATS Saturated fat Trans fat  High-fat cuts of meat (beef, lamb, pork)  Chicken with the skin  Whole-fat dairy products (milk and cream)  Butter  Cheese  Ice cream  Palm and coconut oil  Lard  Commercially-baked pastries, cookies, doughnuts, muffins, cakes, pizza dough  Packaged snack foods (crackers, microwave popcorn, chips)  Stick margarine  Vegetable shortening  Fried foods (French fries, fried chicken, chicken nuggets, breaded fish)  Candy bars
  7. 7. Eat slow digesting foods which include: Meat, poultry, seafood, eggs, dairy products, legumes, nuts and whole grains are all good sources of protein. Legumes and whole grains contain fiber, which helps to slow down their trek through the digestive system. Meat, dairy and nuts contain fat, which has the biggest impact on the time it takes to digest the food. Dairy Skim milk, cottage or low fat pot cheese or ricotta - approx. 90 min. digestion time whole milk cottage cheese - 120 min. digestion whole milk hard cheese - 4 to 5 hours digestion time Animal proteins Egg yolk - 30 min. digestion time Whole egg - 45 min. Fish - cod, scrod, flounder, sole seafood - 30 min. digestion time Fish - salmon, salmon trout, herring, (more fatty fish) - 45 min. to 60 digestion time Chicken - 1 1/2 to 2 hours digestion time (without skin) Turkey - 2 to 2 1/4 hours digestion time (without skin) Beef, lamb - 3 to 4 hours digestion time Pork - 41/2 to 5 hours digestion time[8] Some good suhoor foods include:  Egg whites (1 yolk)  Chicken breast  Oatmeal (জই চূর্ণ)  Cream of wheat  Protein shake  Cinnamon(দ্ারুজচজি)  Bananas  Raw, dark Honey  Raisins or dates  Fibrous vegetables –This will help increase the feeling of fullness as well.(আল ওয়া঱া)  All natural peanut butter  Flax seed oil – A great and tasty brand is Omega Swirl from Barleans –There’s a version for Women as well. (www.barleans.com)  Olive oil – preferably extra virgin (which means it’s cold processed and the essential fatty acids are preserved)  Plenty of water
  8. 8. It is very important to watch your sodium intake at this time as high sodium can cause greater dehydration plus increase thirst during the day – not good for fasters. Avoid high sodium foods like soups, sauces, condiments (আচার/মসলা), gravies (মাাংসসর রসা ঝ াল), high sodium bread products, and canned meats. Of course eating fried foods and heavy oil items can cause heartburn and problems for you all day so it is best to avoid those if possible! Foods for Iftar This is a key time for rehydration. The wisdom in Islam is never ending. We break our fast with dates and water but if you investigate this nutritionally, you will see that dates are very unique in their nutrient content. They contain very high levels of potassium (much more than a banana), a key re-hydration mineral and a special carbohydrate blend that enhances hydration above and beyond water alone. They contain a special blend of glucose and fructose for short and long term energy. They also have a special nutrient called beta D-glucan that is a soluble fiber that can enhance satiety and digestive health. So basically when you eat a date and water for iftar your body gets hydrated again much faster than with water alone.I n fact, clinical research published in the International Journal of Food Science and Nutrition entitled “The fruit of the date palm: its possible use as the best food for the future?” concluded that “dates may be considered as an almost ideal food, providing a wide range of essential nutrients and potential health benefits.”[2] Sample Ramadan Meal Plan for Fat Loss and Muscle Gain *This plan is for a 170 lb MALE, please adjust amounts for bodyweight Suhoor:  Eat 6-8 egg whites (with one yolk)  One bowl of plain oatmeal w/cinnamon(দ্ারুজচজি), raisins(জকলজমল) and a banana  1 teaspoon all-natural peanut butter or olive oil or flax seed oil (1 tablespoon Barlean’s Omega Swirl)  Plenty of water (16-24 oz.)  Opti-pack by Super Nutrition (one pack) multi-vitamin/mineral
  9. 9. Iftar:  Three Dates and a Nutrition Shake (Protein Rush from VPX Sports, Lean Body by Labrada, or Eat-Smart MRP from iSatori)  Plenty of water Sample Ramadan Meal Plan for Fat Loss and Muscle Gain *This plan is for a 130 lb FEMALE, please adjust amounts for bodyweight) Suhoor:  Eat 3-4 egg whites (with one yolk)  ½ cup of plain oatmeal w/ cinammon, raisins and a small banana  1 teaspoon all-natural peanut butter, almond butter or olive oil or flax seed oil (1 tablespoon Barlean’s Omega Swirl)  Plenty of water (16-24 oz.)  Women’s blend: 2 pills of multi-vitamin/multi-mineral Iftar:  Three Dates and a Nutrition Shake-1 scoop w/12 oz water (Pro-Blend 55, Eat-Smart MRP from iSatori, and Low Carb protein from MRM)  Plenty of water Training Times Ok, enough of the background, let’s get to the meat of it! I am going to set the record straight here. The best time to do a weight-training workout is NOT while fasting. This can create way too much muscle breakdown and cause a significant rise in the catabolic hormone cortisol. Training while in a state of dehydration can decrease strength significantly. In fact, research indicates that dehydrating a muscle by as little as 3% can cause a 12% loss in strength. Training while you are fasting can actually be more detrimental than beneficial! The best time to weight train during Ramadan is after taraweeh prayers at night. This will ensure that you will have several meals and plenty of water in your system before going to the gym. This will also allow you to consume your all-important post workout meal or shake which is essential muscle growth which leads to fat loss. If this is too late then the next best time to weight train is about 1 hour after iftar before tarawih prayer. You could do a short but intense 30 minute workout. The best time to do cardio work for maximum fat loss is before suhur – yep, that’s the truth. Of
  10. 10. course, most people I know will not want to get up at around 3:30am and do cardio! If you CAN pull this off then the best thing to do is get up and drink plenty of water with a cup of coffee, green tea, or oolong tea, wait 30 minutes and perform 30-45 minutes of moderate intensity cardio work like a brisk walk on a treadmill. If this is out of the question for you, then the next best time to do cardio is approximately 30-45 minutes after a “light” iftar (I will define this shortly). Short, high intensity cardio like sprinting is actually great to do during Ramadan. It takes less than 10 minutes and provides maximum benefit in terms of fat burning and lean muscle preservation! This isn’t “driving Miss Daisy” cardio – it’s very intensive: an example would be sprinting for 20-30 seconds at full speed (like a crazy dog is chasing you!) and then walking for one minute. Do 4-5 cycles like that and you’re good! Start slow, of course, and work your way up. So now you know when to train, it’s time to learn what to eat and drink (think water, water, and more water! For cardio workouts: Do cardio 45 minutes after this meal for 30-45 minutes at a moderate pace or do a sprint workout if you have less time and then have the next meal before taraweeh. Have a cup of green tea, Oolong tea, or coffee with iftar on cardio days. For weight training days: Eat another food meal before taraweeh like chicken breast (or baked salmon), brown rice and some veggies OR baked fish (salmon, tuna, orange roughy, or mahi mahi), sweet potato, and a garden salad or some steamed vegetables. Drink plenty of water during taraweeh. Go to the gym after taraweeh. (If you pray 20 rak`at, have a protein bar in the middle of prayer). Drink plenty of water during the workout. For men, you can even have Accelerade or Powerade™ or another sports drink during the workout. After the workout, have another Nutrition Shake and lots of water of course. Then sleep 45 minutes later or stay up all night eating and working like I do! Following these simple workout and nutrition tips can really help you make great gains during this blessed month. May Allah help give us patience and strength in this month and throughout the year and make us strong mentally, internally, spiritually, and physically! Top 5 Healthy Foods to eat During Ramadan 1. Dates – They contain a unique blend of glucose and fructose and have a very high potassium content (about 64% more than bananas). They have a nutrient called beta-D-glucan which is a soluble fiber that has health benefits and can increase the feeling of fullness. 2. Raw, Unfiltered Honey – This contains many phytochemicals and flavonoids that can enhance health. Honey is very good for increasing energy. It is an excellent source of antioxidants. In fact, ORAC tests show it has the highest level of antioxidants of virtually any natural food on earth! It even has anti-bacterial effects. Take 1-2 tablespoons daily.
  11. 11. 3. Fish – Eating fish regularly can have positive effects on health. The fish oils EPA and DHA have been shown to improve brain function, enhance cardiovascular health, and reduce inflammation among other things. Some of the best fish are cold water wild salmon, orange roughy, deep sea cod, sea bass, ahi tuna, mahi mahi, and tilapia. 4. Figs – They contain key mineral such as calcium, iron, magnesium, and potassium. They are also a great source of fiber and can support healthy blood sugar levels. Figs are an alkaline food which means they help balance the Ph of the body making it less acidic. 5. Olive Oil - Contains omega 9 or oleic fatty acids. It has been shown to increase the good cholesterol (HDL) while lowering bad cholesterol (LDL). It also seems to have some antioxidant effects. Look for extra virgin olive oil (cold-pressed). Cooking with it can lower some of its benefits. Add it to food after it is cooked!
  12. 12. References: [1]pdf: Ramadan Health Guide [2] http://www.suhaibwebb.com/personaldvlpt/worship/fasting-ramadan/the-ramadan-nutrition-and- workout-plan-for-success-by-rehan-jalali-the-protein-shaikh/ [3] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cereal [4] http://www.webmd.com/diet/features/skinny-fat-good-fats-bad-fats [5] http://www.helpguide.org/life/healthy_diet_fats.htm [6] http://www.thenational.ae/news/uae-news/health/avoid-hot-or-salty-foods-during-ramadan-uae- health-experts-urge [7] http://www.livestrong.com/article/304105-slow-digesting-high-protein-foods/#ixzz2YFgIWFDY [8] http://forum.bodybuilding.com/showthread.php?t=106572611&page=1 [9] http://www.livescience.com/36855-good-carbs-bad-carbs-what-you-need-to-know.html [10] http://diet.lovetoknow.com/wiki/List_of_Good_Carbs_and_Bad_Carbs

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