Ramadan can be a challenging but rewarding time both physically and emotionally. Let’s be honest-- fasting is not easy! But what is easy, is forgetting the importance of caring for our bodies, both physical and psychological while fasting. So, as we approach the halfway point of Ramadan, here are 7 things to make sure you are doing so that you are continuing to take good care of yourself!
1) Visit the doctor before beginning to fast
Although we are about halfway through Ramadan by now, something to think about next year is visiting your doctor before you begin fasting. Personally, every year, my family and I schedule our annual checkups the week before Ramadan, so that we (more so me than my husband) can have peace of mind knowing that our bodies are healthy.
2) Drink as much water as you can in the morning and night
Hydrating is always a good idea. During Ramadan, especially in these hot summer months, dehydration is a pretty common condition. Although mild dehydration is not usually a serious condition, it can cause you to be more tired and agitated than normal, which is never fun! During Ramadan, I like to keep a large bottle of water next to my bed so that at night I can easily have a drink if I wake up. Remember! Sugary drinks and caffeinated drinks can actually contribute to dehydration and fatigue! So stay away from them!
3) Eat carb rich food but remember the vegetables!
Sustainable carb rich foods such as breads, pastas and potatoes are great foods to start and end your day with for a maximum amount of energy. But eating only or mostly carbs can sometimes have a negative effect on the body and make you feel bloated and emotionally down. So make sure to balance your diet! Eating a balanced diet can help to improve your mood, attitude, and motivation during the day.
4) Control portion sizes- don’t overeat
When it’s time to break the fast, it can be very easy to binge eat. Binge eating is not only unhealthy for the body, but can have a very negative effect on your mood. When I overeat, I often feel uncomfortably full and guilty for eating so much. So watch your portions! Chew your food and take care to eat at a normal pace during iftar, you will feel happy and full afterword.
5) Keep busy and spend time with other people who are fasting
Emotional support during Ramadan is important. Especially if you live in a non-Muslim majority country, fasting can feel very emotionally draining because most of the people around you are not participating. That’s why it’s important during Ramadan to connect with other people who are fasting and stay busy together. Having someone to complain with, pray with, or go shopping with can make a huge difference in the quality of your day!
6) Pamper yourself sometimes
Planning iftars, waking up early, fasting, and remembering to make salaat 5 times a day can be exhausting. Wonderful and meaningful, but exhausting. So take some time to relax and rejuvenate. Treat yourself to an hour at the spa, a bath with lavender, or your favorite relaxation activity. You deserve it!
7) GO TO BED
Lastly, make sure you sleep early!!! Personally, I am a night owl so this is always difficult for me. However, lots of sleep is so important. Sleeping late and waking early can lead to a cranky mood and lack of patience during the day. Sleeping early and waking early can lead to a happy and productive day. So go to bed!
Ramadan Mubarak from all of us at SHUKR! Stay healthy!