Fatigue. Brain Fog. Headaches. We all experience these physical effects on some level as we undergo our 30 days of fasting during the month of Ramadan. Many are quick to attribute these effects to the lack of food from fasting. However, the real culprit is the loss of an essential fluid in our body while fasting, water.
Now that Ramadan falls during the summer season, fasting days are longer and hotter than ever before, leaving our bodies feeling dehydrated. The lack of water in our system results in our body losing out on the electrolytes that we need to maintain our energy throughout the day.
Fortunately, learning to properly hydrate your body after breaking your fast can reduce these symptoms and have you feeling energized all throughout Ramadan — leaving you with more time and energy to focus on your worship, rather than wasting the days away on your bed.
As I noted above, dehydration results from the loss of water and important electrolytes from our body such as potassium, sodium, chloride, and many other minerals that are often overlooked.
Staying hydrated is about more than just drinking water. Water alone doesn’t contain the electrolytes we need. If you experience mineral imbalances, replenishing those minerals and the lost fluids will be essential to staying hydrated and reducing unwanted symptoms during your fast.
So, here are 5 tips to help you stay hydrated during Ramadan:
1. BREAK YOUR FAST WITH A CUP OF WATER AND 3 DATES
Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) always broke his fast with 3 dates and a cup of water. This gives your body the perfect balance of fluid from water, along with potassium and other minerals from dates to restore lost minerals. Dates also provide the natural sugars needed to boost up your energy and revitalize you after a long day of fasting. To make sure you drink enough water from iftar to suhoor fill a very large bottle of water and keep it next to you all the time, even as you pray your taraweeh and keep sipping on it throughout. Before you know it you will have gone through the whole bottle and refilled it. This is one habit that I never give up during Ramadan and it works as well for suhoor time too.
2. REPLACE SUGARY DRINKS WITH COCONUT WATER
What’s so good about coconut water? It just so happens to be the perfect natural drink to get those necessary electrolytes. It’s high in potassium and other minerals which replenish your electrolytes naturally and help hydrate your cells on a deeper level. Like dates, it also contains natural sugars that can give you a sustained boost of energy after breaking your fast. The best part is it’s a great way to satisfy your sugar cravings at iftar and substitute the sugar-filled drinks that have become a staple of Ramadan culture in many households. Sugary drinks during Ramadan will cause a bust and boost effect leaving you feeling drained and sleepy just an hour after iftar, which can further leave you drained when it’s time to start nightly prayers.
3. DRINK GREEN JUICE BEFORE YOU DIG IN
Hydrating green juice is a Ramadan tradition at my home for very good reasons. After long hours of fasting, your body isn’t ready to digest heavy meals. What it needs the most is highly nutritious, easy-to-digest foods that will replenish lost fluids, minerals and vitamins. There’s nothing better for that than some refreshing green juice.
This juice is made from 80% vegetables and a little bit of fruit to taste, just enough to give your body a healthy boost of natural sugars. The best part is it’s extremely easy to make! All you have to do is freshly juice some celery, cucumber, beets, carrots and half an apple for taste. Drink that right after breaking your fast to give your body a boost of hydration and nutrients and then allow yourself 20-30 minutes before digging into the main meal. I’ve been doing this on a daily basis every Ramadan, and I can’t overstate how much better your body feels after. If green juice doesn’t sound like your kind of drink, you can check out other hydrating, sugar-free drinks for Ramadan in my Ramadan guide here.
4. GET SOME SOUP IN YOUR SYSTEM
Soups are another family-favorite during Ramadan. As mentioned earlier, water is the best source of hydration, but as it’s hard to drink enough water during the short period between iftar and suhoor, it’s important to include foods that are high in water content. Soup does just the trick. It serves as an easy to digest highly nutritious food, making it an ideal food for your stomach after a long day of fasting.
You can enhance the nutritional value of soups by adding different types of vegetables. If you want to really up the flavor, add some Himalayan salt and kelp powder, this not only makes your soup a pleasure to eat, but adds even more beneficial minerals to rehydrate your body. If you’re really looking to go the extra mile, use bone broth as the base of your soup, making your already healthy and replenishing soup into a powerhouse of nutrition. If you’re looking for some more ideas for your soups this Ramadan, you can check out my Ramadan recipes in my Ramadan guide here.
5. EAT FRUITS AND VEGETABLES HIGH IN WATER CONTENT
Specifically, high-water content fruits like watermelon, peaches, grapes, and cantaloupes. These fruits are not only high in water content making them a great source of rehydration after fasting but are also a great way to overcome those pesky sugar cravings. For vegetables I like including celery, spinach, cucumbers, and lettuce to any salads I make due to their extremely high-water content (over 90%!). Including a big bowl of salad in your iftar, and eating a few slices of fruit a few hours after, and at suhoor, can make a huge difference in your day to day fasting experience.
Fasting when done correctly can be a tool to enhance your immune system, give you more mental clarity, help you boost your metabolism, and detox your body from stored toxins. By learning about which foods and drinks are best on your fasting journey, you will not only enhance the health benefits of Ramadan but keep yourself energized enough to focus on what Ramadan is all about — worship, prayer, and racking up those good deeds.
If you would like more healthy recipes for Ramadan and a full guide on how to stay healthy and improve your energy during this month sign up here or join my Facebook group to get access to my full Ramadan Guide. If you’re looking to really make the most of this Ramadan, follow along, and join many others participating in my #FeatsNotFeasts Ramadan Challenge here. Remember, this Ramadan, stay hydrated and most of all be nourished!
Sourced from Layali blog