Benefits of Fasting


With the advent of Ramadan every year, the Muslims of the world enter into the process of fasting, which lasts all the days of this month, and many questions arise about the meanings of fasting and its effects on physical and psychological health, especially from non-Muslims who do not know anything about Ramadan, even these questions may come from New Muslims who are going through their first fasting experience.

What are the physical and psychological effects of fasting on the body? if a healthy diet is followed, fasting will have positive effects on the health of the fasting person?

All this we will learn about in this article according to several scientific studies and recommendations of experts and doctors.

The health benefits of fasting include blood and lipid levels, weight, body mass index, waist circumference, systolic and diastolic blood pressure, blood sugar, stress, inflammatory factors, and cancer.

To begin with, we emphasize that the tips here are for guidance and are not a substitute for the doctor's recommendations. People with acute or chronic diseases should consult a doctor before fasting, especially those whose illness is severe or uncontrolled, as fasting may have negative effects on them.

The benefits of fasting for the body

1-the benefits of fasting for blood

  • Increased erythrocyte count.
  • Increased white blood cell count.
  • Increased platelet count.

2-the benefits of fasting on blood fats

  • Lowering the level of cholesterol in the blood.
  • Increase the level of good cholesterol.
  • Reducing the level of harmful cholesterol.
  • Lowering the level of triglycerides. 

3. the benefits of fasting to reduce weight

  • Weight reduction, noting that studies have shown that this weight is restored in subsequent months. Therefore, it is important to pay attention to adherence to a healthy and balanced diet and exercise so that a person maintains the kilograms lost.
  • Reduction of the body mass coefficient.
  • Reduce waist circumference.

4. reducing systolic and diastolic blood pressure

5. reducing blood sugar

6. reduce stress levels

7. reduction of inflammatory factors and cancer triggers

However, obtaining these benefits is conditional on the fasting person following a healthy diet that includes:

  • Moderation in food.
  • Increase the intake of vegetables and fruits.
  • Reduce the intake of fats and sugars.
  • Practice moderate physical activity.
  • Refrain from smoking.

For maintaining lost weight in Ramadan

  • Making permanent, healthy changes in the quality of the food he eats.
  • Keep practicing physical activities.
  • Make permanent behavioral adjustments to the way he eats and quantities of food.

The benefits of fasting for slimming

According to a nutritionist at Hamad Medical Corporation in Qatar, Zuhair Al-Arabi, fasting helps burn fat as a source of energy, which leads to weight loss. It also helps in getting rid of toxins stored in body fat.

Dr. Al-Arabi adds that during fasting, the body first gets rid of old or damaged cells, and then it becomes to renew the cells and replaces them with new ones after eating breakfast to provide the body with strength, vitality, and activity.

Healthy eating habits that help to lose weight in Ramadan

It is better to continue these habits after it is over, including:

  • Limit the use of oils in food preparation, for example: do not add margarine to foods such as puree, and replace cream soup with cereal or vegetable soup.
  • Using grilling or boiling in preparing meals instead of frying, for example grilling samosas instead of frying them.
  • Eat lean meat and chicken or grilled without skin, and plenty of grilled fish.
  • Replacing sweets with fresh fruits while not overdoing it, it is enough to eat two servings of fruits a day as 3 dates are considered at the rate of one dietary serving, that is, approximately 60-70 kcal.
  • The use of low-fat or fat-free milk products in the preparation of Ramadan foods and sweets such as pudding, custard, or other sweets, and eating rub or fat-free yogurt.
  • Eat unroasted and unsalted nuts in moderation.
  • Replace sweetened juices and concentrated drinks with freshly squeezed juices, while limiting yourself to one glass a day.
  • Drinking plenty of fluids, especially water, between Iftar and Suhoor.
  • Eat fresh vegetables, and serve salads without adding high-fat marinade and mayonnaise, a little olive oil and vinegar can be added as an alternative do not add salt.
  • Reduce the number of starches by mixing steamed rice with vegetables or legumes to give a good flavor and increase the amount of fiber in the diet, which leads to a feeling of satiety, one glass of stewed rice or cooked pasta is considered a sufficient amount for a meal.
  • Do not stop doing sports such as brisk walking for 30 minutes daily, swimming, or exercising at sports centers.

Psychological benefits of fasting

According to Hamad Medical Corporation, "The fasting mandate prescribed by Allah has countless psychological benefits on the individual, the most important of which is that it reduces some mental illnesses such as depression, anxiety, and insomnia, it stimulates and generates the ability to withstand the stresses of life and face them, leading to psychological stability.

Fasting and the practice of worship in this holy month results in rapprochement and social communication, especially during Iftar and Suhoor, as well as performing tarawih prayers among others takes the patient away from his isolation and starts a kind of optimism and Hope, which makes him think positively about himself and others," he said.

According to the foundation, "6% of the world's population suffers from depression, which is equivalent to 350 million people of all age groups. Some scientific studies have confirmed that fasting alleviates the symptoms of anger, anxiety, and insomnia that may appear in some people, and also adjusts the religious status of individuals, as performing worship and doing the night during the blessed month makes the fasting feel at peace of mind because fasting strengthens immunity against psychological stress as a result of life's hardships and difficulties".

"A global study has shown the positive impact of fasting in the treatment of addiction, because fasting refines and improves the psyche, which affects the way of thinking and thinking about things and reflects positively on our psychological life, and fasting gives the individual willpower to change for the better," she adds.

According to Dr. Suhaila gholoum, consultant psychiatrist at Hamad Foundation, fasting reduces some mental illnesses such as depression, anxiety, and insomnia, as it is an incentive that generates the ability to withstand the pressures of life and face them, leading to psychological stability.

Dr. Suhaila explained that performing worship and doing the night during the holy month makes the fasting person feel at ease because fasting strengthens immunity against psychological stress as a result of life's hardships and difficulties.

She pointed out that psychological and medical studies have confirmed the effect of fasting in the treatment of patients undergoing addiction treatment, stressing that fasting refines and improves the psyche, which positively affects the way of thinking and thinking about things, and is also reflected positively on the psychological side. Fasting also gives a person the willpower to change for the better.


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