Beware of weight gain after Ramadan. The holy month of Ramadan is about to start within a fortnight and it is the right time to start preparing your body for the month-long fast.
Before starting your fast, it is advisable to make a medical assessment of your fitness, according to Ishi Khosla, Nutritionist, Weightmonitor UAE. You could opt for a comprehensive health check-up.
"It would help to know if you are heading for some disorders such as diabetes, high uric acid or kidney related diseases, any deficiencies or abnormal blood pressure etc. and if you are, then understand the medical risk factors and precautions that can be taken before you embark on your fast," Khosla adds.
Before starting the fast, it is best to research the nutritious value of the food you eat as feasting while breaking the fast is not the best way to observe a fast.
As it is summer in the UAE during Ramadan, drink plenty of fluids; consume watery fruits like melons, watermelons, cucumbers, salads. Dig into vegetable and fruit juices, soups, stews etc.
With a wide spread of delicacies to choose from during the Ramadan iftars, it is common place to feast while breaking the fast and thereby adding on more pounds.
A healthy way of doing it would be to include plenty of vegetables, fruits and fluids, and modest amounts of dairy, nuts, seeds and sprouts, for the body to function effectively.
Dos of breaking the Ramadan fast
* Consume fruit or dry fruits along with fluid -- Laban or buttermilk/vegetable or fruit juice / iced tea/ cold coffee coconut water/soup
* Do not eat too much immediately, there are no specific guidelines as to the time gap to be maintained to have a proper meal but it is definitely essential to keep a watch on the quality of meal.
* Consume foods that are rich in complex carbohydrates and protein. For example: an egg on whole-grain toast, a few crackers with peanut butter, some orange slices, and two glasses of water.
* Do not forget to include mineral rich foods such as banana, raisins, cheese, yoghurt, beans, spinach etc. in your diet.
* Do not burden the stomach- keep it light. Avoid overeating, and be sure to drink a few more glasses of fluids. Water flushes out toxins from our body and prevents dehydration. Aim for 8 glasses by bedtime.
Don'ts during the Ramadan month
* Avoid eating heavy curries, fried or oily food as it will take a toll on your stomach.
* Large portions of rich creamy desserts can be avoided
* Do not eat too late into the light as it can induce digestive disturbances like reflux, heartburn etc.
Anita Iyer is a Dubai based writer
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