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Eating healthy during Ramadan

April 20, 2022
Ramadan is the ninth month of the Muslim calendar. During this time fasting takes place throughout the daily hours of Ramadan. As Muslims, we often find that during Ramadan we knowingly or unknowingly consume more sugars, fats, and carbs than usual which can lead to weight gain later in the month. This trend also correlates to increased incidents of being inactive and less energy during Ramadan.

Muslims observe the holy month of Ramadan, which is month-long fasting. It becomes difficult to eat healthy during Ramadan. In this section, I am going to provide some information about how to specifically eat healthy during a continuous fasting period during the holy month of Ramadan which is systematic with the Islamic diet.

This Ramadan, it's not just about fasting. Eating healthy is a must too. Read below to know the basics of how to eat right during this holy month.

Halal Ramadan food can be as healthy and as tasty as any other food, we only need to be mindful of what we are eating and consume staple nutrients very well without overeating or consuming foods that make us lazier or serve as energy suckers.

Dates and snacks for Iftar

To feel energized throughout the day during Ramadan, the diet should be rich in complex carbs for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. This will keep an individual full for a long time with fewer cravings in between meals.

Another important thing is to consume smaller portions but more frequently. We do not have time for 3 hours meal gap so small frequent meals throughout the day will help regulate blood sugar, which is important for a healthy and energized individual.

A list of foods that are healthy to consume is as follows:

Fruits: watermelons, apricots, apples, oranges, grapefruit

Oils: Olive oil and vegetable oil

Dairy: any type of milk like cow's milk or goat's milk or sheep's milk or almond milk and so on.

Eggs: any type of eggs, including hard-boiled, raw, or cooked in the sun.

Grains: rice and millet white bread can be eaten but mustn't be cooked with ghee (clarified butter)

Dips: hummus made from chickpeas (garbanzo beans) or tahini (sesame seed paste).

Fruits on table ready to serve

As a self-described foodie, cooking and feeding my family for Eid Iftar and Suhoor poses challenges. Spending too much time in the kitchen seems wasteful during Ramadan. Choosing one healthy dish from each category is a great way to minimize preparing food. For example, vegetable salad with shaved parmesan cheese for Iftar, lettuce cups with hummus for Suhoor, quinoa balls with caprice and tapenade as an appetizer, vegetable Thai green curry with brown rice for the main course are some of the meals I try to keep on the go during Ramadan! =) 

I would also eat vegetables and salad during daily Iftars:

-French Lentil Salad with Avocado and Walnut Dressing

-Cucumber, Feta, and Mint Yogurt Dip

-Greek Pasta Salad with Roasted Veggies