SHAFAQNA – Ramadan is a month of worship, charity, fasting and blessings. It brings with itself a host of customs, of which iftar (breaking of the fast) plays an important part. Eating right and having a balanced iftar contributes to maintaining good health during this holy month. Take a look at 6 tips for a healthy, balanced iftar:
Break your fast with dates
Fasting for long hours can cause issues like lethargy, headaches and low blood sugar. So break your fast with dates. They contain sugar, fibre, potassium and magnesium which help in dealing with the above-mentioned problems. Thus, eating dates after a strenuous day of fasting can help body’s blood glucose level get to normal.
Before you get to the big food item, make sure that you have had sufficient water, healthy juices or curd fist. This will provide your body with essential fluids and prevent dehydration. You may also opt for soup as it replenishes the body fluids lost in the day and prepare your stomach to receive rest of the meal.
Don’t mix fruits
Either eat fruits during iftar or consume them after you are done with dinner. Why? When fruits are combined with foods that contain minerals, proteins and fats, they tend to hinder digestion. It’s best to leave a gap of at least 30 minutes between a fruit snack and a meal.
Don’t mix citrus foods with dairy products
Acid present in citrus fruits can curdle the milk-based food, eventually leading to an upset stomach. In fact, mixing protein with starch is also not a good idea. If the dinner consists of meat and you plan to gorge on it – then don’t. Try balancing it out with some fresh salad.
Moderation is the key
Don’t drink too much water during iftar, as it can contribute to stomach pain and fatigue. Also, avoid going for heavy foods as it puts an extra load on the digestive system. Do not overfill your plate. Avoid sleeping immediately after iftar.
Hold your horses
Don’t rush to finish your food. When your body receives surplus of food suddenly, after being deprived of it for an entire day, it may cause indigestion and other gastric problems. Break your fast with dates, water fruits or smoothies. This will give your stomach some time to process and lead to proper functioning.