8 Amazing Health Benefits Of Ramadan Fasting

Amazing health benefits of Ramadan
Fasting in the blessed month of Ramadan has many amazing health benefits that contradict score of myths claiming 'Ramadan is unhealthy'.

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Before discussing what are the health benefits of fasting in Ramadan or is Ramadan fasting healthy or not in detail, let's know what actually this month is about.

Ramadan - A Month Of Mercy & Blessings.

During the blessed month of Ramadan, Ashawm in the Arabic language, which can be defined as fasting, it is to abstain from food, drink & sexual intercourse from dawn till sunset.

During Ramadan, it is mandatory and obligatory upon every Muslim male and female who has attained puberty to fast the entire month unless a valid excuse such as sickness, travel, or menstruation presents itself.

See, I have explicitly used 'Ramadan" fasting instead of just "fasting" because fasting in general without any fixed time for having foods or fasting for a very long period of time (in days or week) generally don't benefits our physical body.

It is the practice of time-restricted fasting for 8-12 hours, then having food, the cycle of which is repeated for few days that actually benefits our health.

This is what we, Muslims observe during the month of Ramadan as a religious obligation.
Scientifically, the same is termed as "intermittent fasting".


Benefits Of Fasting In Ramadan.

There are a number of benefits that can be highlighted with regard to fasting. The benefits can be divided into two main categories.

  • Benefits for our spiritual souls.
  • Health benefits for our physical body.

  • But bear in mind that Muslims do not solely fast because of the health benefits which are of a much secondary nature in comparison to the spiritual benefits that an individual reaps through fasting.

    Let's discuss the 8 amazing health benefits of fasting during the month of Ramadan (intermittent fasting).

    1. Fasting changes the functions of cells, genes and hormones.

    When we don't eat for a while, several things start to happen in our body. For example, our body starts to initiate important cellular repair process and changes the hormone level to make stored body fat more accessible.

    Experts in biological science state that many changes occur in our body during fasting. Such as:

    A. Insulin levels

    Blood levels of insulin drop significantly which facilitates fat burning.

    B. Human growth hormone:

    The blood levels of growth hormone may increase as much as five folds. Higher levels of this hormone facilitate fat burning and muscles gain and have a no. of other benefits as well.

    C. Cellular repair:

    The boy induces important repair process, such as removing waste material from cells.

    D. Gene expression:

    There are beneficial changes in several genes and molecules related to longevity and protection against no of diseases.

    Scientists confirms Ramadan health benefits

    2. Intermittent fasting can help you lose weight and belly fat.

    Fasting during the month of Ramadan can help you lose and shed weight.

    You may think that how this is going to benefit our body which in fact may lead to the breakdown of muscles, considering it a disadvantage of Ramadan.

    But, when we fast, our body first uses up energy from our body then glucose stored in our liver and muscles are used up. When the glucose runs out, our body starts using up fat for energy. Small amounts of glucose are also manufactured at this time.

    Only if we are in prolonged fasting for many days or a week, then our body will turn to use up protein released from the breakdown of muscles - which is called starvation.

    This doesn't happen when fasting in Ramadan as we are eating properly after the interval when we break our fast.

    Extending only from dawn to dusk, Ramadan fast gives ample time to replenish our energy stores during iftar and Suhoor meals.

    This provides our body with a progressive and gentle transition from using up glucose to using fat as a source of energy.

    It prevents the breakdown of our muscles for proteins.

    3. Fasting during the month of Ramadan improves insulin sensitivity.

    Ramadan lowers diabetes
    The third benefits of fasting on our health care that it can reduce insulin resistance and this lowers your risk to type 2 diabetes.

    It has shown to have a positive effect on insulin sensitivity allowing our body to tolerate carbohydrates better than if you didn't fast.

    4. Ramadan fasting can reduce oxidative stress and inflammation in the body.

    Inflammation is the important responsibility of the immune system to anything wrong happening in our body.

    Inflammation is the key driver of many diseases such as tuberculosis, asthma, bronchitis, appendicitis, rheumatoid arthritis, etc.

    Biomarkers of inflammation such as C-reactive protein (CRP), Tumor Necrosis Factor-alpha (TNF-α) and Interleukins-6 (IL-6) have been found to be in significantly reduced concentrations in people observing Ramadan fasts, some studies reported (Source).

    5. Ramadan fasting seeds up the metabolism in our body.

    It can regulate your digestion and promote healthy bowel functions that also improves your metabolism.

    6. Fasting improves cognitive functions & prevent neurodegenerative diseases. 

    Ramadan benefits brain health
    The next benefit of Ramadan fasting on our health is that it has shown to improve brain functions because it boosts the production of a protein called Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) which is important for survival and growth of the neurons.

    BDNF contributes to neuronal plasticity that helps in learning and memory. These eventually benefits in preventing neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer's & Parkinson's disease.

    7. Ramadan fasting reduces the risks of heart disease.

    Studies have shown that fasting lowers the blood pressure and cholesterol levels which including diabetes and weight are the major risk factors for heart diseases.

    8. Fasting during Ramadan lowers the risk of cancer.

    Recent experiments on animals & few human trials have proved that fasting reduces the risk of cancer or lowers the growth rate of cancer & it is scientifically proven that cancerous cells respond better to chemotherapy while fasting.

    Conclusion:

    So my dear brothers and sisters in Islam, above are the 8 scientifically proven health benefits of Ramadan fasting and the list keeps going on and on but it is of extreme importance that we understand as Muslims that fasting during the month of Ramadan can most definitely be very very beneficial for our health if it is done correctly.

    Many of us tend to breakdown fasting daily with feasts across huge tables, resulting in us actually gaining much more weight during the month of Ramadan than normal days.

    My brothers and sisters in Islam, the underlying principle that needs to be adhered to behind the month of Ramadan is self-discipline and self-control. This should never ever fall apart at the end of the day.

    A balanced and wholesome diet that contains foods from all the major food groups is vital to maintaining good health and reaping the benefits of fasting. So, make sure that we strike a balance as Prophet Muhammad ﷺ did. We can see a perfect balance in what He ( ﷺ ) taught us.


    So, if we wish to live healthy and productive lives to do a lot of good work in this world to reap the very best in the next world, we have to strive to emulate the beautiful teachings of our beloved Prophet (ﷺ).

    With that more or less, I conclude this post and please don't forget to share this post as much as possible to inspire others & to also share in on the rewards.
    Jazakallah!

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