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Health 15 May 2018
By: Natasha Tanga

8 tips to prepare your body for fasting

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As we are approaching the Holy Month of Ramadan, it is important to set some time aside and plan out some healthy habits to prepare ourselves throughout our fast. On this week's journal, we will be discussing a few simple tips you can do to ensure a smooth transition into your fasting habits. Read on!

1. Adjust your sleep schedule

Get your sleep cycle in line with Ramadan as you will be waking up early for Suhoor. Remember, don't sleep too late the night before. You'll never want to miss Suhoor and wake up with close to zero energy while having to face your daily activities the next day.

2. Start doing your meal-planning

Prepare your menu for Iftar and Suhoor for the first seven days and list the ingredients needed. Advanced planning will take away your confusion in deciding what food to eat, as well as making sure that what you eat are nutritious for the body. 

3. Get used to eating early breakfast

Start having an early breakfast from now to help your body get used to the earlier hours of waking up and having Suhoor, especially if you are not much of a breakfast eater. You may want to begin with fruits, as fiber can help aid your digestion before continuing for the main course.

4. Watch what you are eating

Just like any other day, your body needs nutrition to function well. Even moreso on this holy month, as your body will need to store extra energy for doing activities during the day. Make sure that you consume enough protein and calcium-rich foods such as meats, dairy products like milk and yogurt, as well as eggs. Also, bear in mind that dramatic change in your eating habits during Ramadan can affect your bowel movement. This could be prevented by enriching your diet with fiber rich foods including whole grains, fruits and vegetables.

Having snacks or desserts after iftar is okay as long as it is not thick, fried, and oily, as they may not be the best choice for your stomach after a long day of fasting. Instead, opt for healthy ones such as nuts, dried fruits and dates to boost your energy and provide nutrients for the body. Eating hot, salty and spicy food during suhoor is not recommended as they can cause dehydration during the day.

5. Avoid overeating

Contrary to popular belief, over-eating before and during Ramadan will only increase your appetite and make it more difficult to fast. Stick to 3 regular meals a day and avoid snacks in between to make an easier transition to having less meals during the holy month. 

Also, even though you are hungry, keep in mind to eat slowly as will help your stomach to digest foods easily, as digestion starts in the mouth. Remember that the brain takes about 15 to 20 minutes to start signaling feelings of fullness.

6. Hydrate regularly to prevent dehydration

Continuing pointer 4, realize that you will be holding your hunger and thirst for up to 14 hours everyday for one month. It's crucially important to stay hydrated throughout the day. Studies suggest that people should drink at least two liters of water (8-10 glasses) every other day during the month of Ramadan. 

To avoid getting dehydrated during the first few days of Ramadan, start by reducing your daily intake of caffeine throughout the day to train your body to function caffeine-free during daylight hours. You might want to switch to herbal teas instead, with all the added benefits.

7. Modify your exercise routine

Regular, non-rigorous exercise is recommended during Ramadan to help keep your energy levels up. Fasting slows the metabolism, making it harder to keep fit and burn calories at your usual level. Start planning your exercise routine during the holy month. Great options include moderate walking shortly before breaking the fast (iftar), swimming, yoga and stretching regularly, particularly in the morning to keep the body active.

8. Don't forget to take supplements

In order to keep your body healthy throughout Ramadan, you may want to consider including some specific foods and supplements in your diet. This way, your body can continue to get important aid it needs. To help you strengthen your immunity and combat diseases this holy month, opt for our Relief Sari Jinten Hitam. With natural herb extracts, it acts as a shield to keep your body healthy and energized without any side effects. 

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