Ramadan is also called as Ramzan, it is the most sacred month of the year in Islamic culture. Muslims observe the month of Ramadan, to mark that Allah, or God, gave the first chapters of the Quran to the Prophet Muhammad in 610. During Ramzan, Muslims fast, abstain from pleasures and pray to become closer to God. It is also a good time for families to gather and celebrate.
Ramadan is the ninth month in the Islamic calendar, which is a lunar calendar based on the cycles of the moon. Rituals begin the morning after the crescent moon is visibly sighted, marking the beginning of the new month. Traditionally, people searched for the slight crescent using the naked eye, which has led to the declaration of different starting times for Ramadan, due to weather or geography.
To have a consistent start time for Muslims throughout the world, astronomical calculations are now sometimes used. Using science to trace the beginning of the month is controversial, however, and in numerous parts of the world, Ramadan still does not begin until religious leaders announce that they have personally seen the crescent moon. Ramadan can utmost be between 29 and 30 days.
Why Do Muslims Fast?
The fast is supposed to bring the faithful closer to God and to remind them of the suffering of those less fortunate. Ramzan is a time to unhook from worldly pleasures and focus on one’s inner self.
It is considered as a way to physically and spiritually cleanse from habits like smoking & caffeine. Muslims usually donate to charities during the month and feed the hungry. Many of them spend more time at mosques during Ramzan and use their downtime to recite the Quran.
Fasting during Ramzan is one of the five pillars of Islam, they fast for 19 hrs, along with the Muslim declaration of faith, daily prayer, charity, and performing the Hajj pilgrimage will be done.
How Do Muslims Fast?
Observant Muslims restrain from eating and drinking from dawn to dusk for the entire month of Ramzan. A sip of water or a puff of a cigarette is enough to disprove the fast.
As you all know that it’s not sufficient to avoid few foods and drinks during the day. Ramzan is also an exercise in self-restraint. Muslims are encouraged to avoid gossip and arguments. Sexual intercourse between spouses is also prohibited during the daytime fast.
Just before your fast time, Muslims have a pre-dawn meal of power foods to get them through the day, the suhoor. People eat dates and dough wrapped foods which are filled with potato and leeks, first steamed, then fried.
How Do Muslims Break Their Fast?
Muslims traditionally interrupt their fast by drinking a sip of water and having few dates during sunset. That first drop of water is by far the most anticipated moment of the day.
After a sunset prayer, a huge religious celebration which is known as “iftar” is distributed among family and friends. Iftar is a social occasion as much as it is a gastronomical adventure. Across the world, juices made from apricots are a staple at Ramadan iftars. In South Asia and Turkey, yogurt-based drinks are famous.
Across the whole universe of Muslims, mosques and few help federations put up tents and tables for the public to eat free iftar meals every night in the time of Ramadan.
Can One Be Exempt From Fasting?
Yes. There is a deviation for children, the elderly, those who are ill, women who are pregnant, nursing or women who are menstruating, and people traveling, which can include athletes during tournaments.
Many Muslims will accept and welcome others around them who aren’t celebrating Ramadan.
What Is Known As An Iftar And Suhoor?
Suhoor is also known Sehri, Sahari and Sahur in other few languages is an Islamic period referring to the meal had early in the morning by Muslims before fasting, sawm, in daylight hours throughout the Islamic month of Ramadan. The meal is consumed before the sun rises, and before the Fajr prayer. Suhoor as the morning meal is matched by iftar as the evening meal, during Ramadan.
Iftar means the evening meal for breaking the daily fast throughout the Islamic month of Ramadan. Iftar during Ramzan is often done as a community, with Muslims gathering to break their fast together. Iftar is done right after Maghrib (sunset) time. Traditionally, a date is the primary thing to be consumed during Iftar when the fast is broken. During the time of iftar, people donate dahi vada, fruits and juices.
Here Are Few Suggestions Of Foods To Eat And Avoid During Iftar And Suhoor
What To Eat During Suhoor?
Eggs and meat are generally high in protein and also other essential nutrients. They not only help you stay full for longer but can be made in several ways to suit your tastes.
Talking about meat, Haleem is one of the famous foods that is consumed by not only muslims but also everyone during this period. It aids in replenishing depleted energy levels, by helping you stay sharp and focused.
Oatmeals are rich in fibre, that your body needs during suhoor. This soluble fibre turns to gel in the stomach and slows down the digestion, which helps to lower cholesterol and blood glucose levels and keeps you energized throughout your fast.
Calcium And Vitamin-Rich Food
Generally, dairy products are rich in calcium and protein, and the best source of nutrition. Opt for a yogurt smoothie or choose vanilla and honey milkshake to stay full and also hydrated throughout the day.
What To Avoid During Suhoor?
Avoid Simple Or Refined Carbohydrates
Few foods such as sugars, white flour, pastries, donuts and also croissants, gives you the fullness for only three to four hours and are low in essential nutrients.
An imbalance of sodium levels in the human body makes you very thirsty while fasting, so try to avoid salted nuts, pickles, chips and food which contains soya sauce.
Coffee contains caffeine which leads to insomnia and restlessness. In addition, it doesn’t hydrate your body and keeps you longing for water the whole day.
What To Eat During Iftar Time?
Potassium is mainly for the proper functioning of the body. Some of its important roles include minimizing cramps and maintaining fluid and electrolyte balance in the human body. Foods which are high in potassium include beans, dark leafy greens, potatoes, squash, yogurt, avocados, mushrooms, and also bananas. Dates that are called as nutrient powerhouses which are a good source of potassium and an excellent food to break your regular fast. A date not only helps you hydrate quickly but also gives you instant energy to make you feel rejuvenated after the long hours of fasting.
Drink as much as water possible or few fruit juices between iftar and bedtime to avoid dehydration.
Generally, almonds contain good fats which are essential, particularly when your body has been craving fats after the long hours of fasting. Raw nuts are an amazing source for iftar as they help you feel full and in control, without the need to binge.
Cucumbers, lettuce and other hydrating vegetables that are high in fibre and water. They not only cool your body but are also a great choice for keeping your body & skin healthy. It helps in avoiding constipation during Ramadan.
What To Avoid During The Time Of Iftar?
Avoid drinking processed beverages and carbonated drinks, that are usually high in sugar, enhancing your probability of overweight and obesity, and can cause bloating and gas, leading to indigestion. Consume regular water and coconut water to quench your thirst.
High-sugar foods like sweets and chocolates should be avoided as they consist minimum nutritional value and are more in calories. They bestow to weight gain and can lead to health issues if consumed regularly.
Few greasy foods and fried foods, like fried dumplings, samosas, pastries and oily curries, must be avoided as they are filled with fat and stored in the body as fatty tissue. Eating fatty foods after long hours of fasting generates acidity and indigestion.
How Is The End Of Ramadan Has Been Celebrated?
The end of Ramadan is marked by intense worship as Muslims seek to have their prayers.
Muslims take part in early morning Eid prayers the day after Ramadan. Families usually spend the day at parks and eating — now during the day.
The last 10 nights of Ramadan are a period of intense worship, along with a holiday for three days. Eid al-Fitr, the celebration marking the conclusion of Ramadan, is a time of gifts, food, and festivities. Families often head to parks for daytime picnics.
Following Are The Most Common Mistakes Many Of Them Commit During The Month Of Ramadan
- Overeating at Iftar, that too foods which lack in fiber content, as you know foods which are rich in fiber helps in proper digestion of food.
- Drinking fizzy drinks on breaking fast while the stomach is still empty.
- Samosas and Pakoras, who can avoid those delicious crunchy snacks? But eating such oily foods ‘in excess amount’ is one of the most common reasons leading to acidity and constipation.
- Smoking in surplus after Iftar. We see many people suddenly disappear after one glass of water and dates. Step out and you can spot them in a corner, smoking like a chimney. Smoking in excess results in heartburn.
- Sleeping after Iftar. Many of them tend to lie down / take a small nap as soon as breaking the fast.
- Diabetic and BP patients must avoid foods which are rich in sugar and salt.
- One of the big mistakes often committed by people is to have supper right after Iftar. The best time to have Dinner is after Taraweeh.
The best thing about these mistakes is that they can all be changed. Have an objective to get better and avoid these pitfalls and errors.
In this particular year, as Ramadan is celebrated in the summer, a lot of people deal with dehydration issues. So, here are a few hacks to deal with them:
Once we break our fast, we kind of get a little food frenzy, right? We eat till we are heavy, and digest with a nice ice cold cup of soda. But, did you know that soda drinks can cause an enormous amount of thirst? Since they give us that instant fulfilling, thus preventing our bodies from using liquids. There are a multiple numbers of things you can eat and drink so as to make fasting easier for you the next day.
1. Eat watermelons to avoid thirst in Ramadan
Watermelons are one of the best fruits that are available in the summer season, correct? Juicy and very refreshing to eat. Well, eat away, because watermelon consists of 91% water and only 6% sugar. If you are tired of munching on watermelon and spitting out the seeds, make yourself a watermelon smoothie.
2. Eat tomatoes to avoid thirst in Ramadan
Tomatoes are very juicy and they keep you hydrated. Did you know that one cup of cherry tomatoes offer over half a cup of water? Be sure to include tomatoes in your meal somehow so as to stock up on plenty of fluid.
3. Eat Cucumbers to avoid thirst in Ramadan
Cucumbers are one of the foods which are composed of 90% water and are very high in fibre, which ultimately gives you a good digestion. Be sure to have cucumbers on the time of Suhoor. It will keep you refreshed and cool the next day.
4. Eat Curd And Cardamom to avoid thirst in Ramadan
As you all know that curd contains digestive enzymes, probiotics and cardamom help in keeping your body cool, dehydration can be controlled. Hence consuming 2 spoons of curd and cardamom helps in preventing thirst.
By above information you can get to know everything regarding Ramadan, which helps you stayu hydrated, fit and you can get rid of few health problems by following all the thing mentioned.